Sunday, April 27, 2014

Cosi in HD

Conductor:  James Levine
Production:  Lesley Koenig

Ferrando:  Matthew Polenzani (tenor)
Guglielmo:  Rodion Pogossov (bass)
Don Alfonso:  Maurizio Muraro (bass)
Fiordiligi:  Susanna Phillips (soprano)
Dorabella:  Isabel Leonard (mezzo-soprano)
Despina:  Danielle de Niese (soprano)

Because I was tired from my trip to San Francisco, I didn't make it to the end of Cosi fan tutte in HD on Saturday.  Perhaps I will try again on Wednesday.  For some reason not known to me the Metropolitan Opera is transmitting two repeats of Cecilia Bartoli productions in a row.  She is something of a significant figure in my life, so I could not help feeling her ghost lurking in the wings.  Also this is my third Cosi in the last year.  I left shortly after a lovely "Soave al vento."

As an advertisement for La Cenerentola, a film of Joyce DiDonato played with her singing "Una voce poco fa."  I had to go out during the original broadcast of this aria, so I was pleased to see it.

None of these performers actually reminded me of Cecilia.  Danielle de Niese created her own personal version of Despina which did not summon images of her predecessor in the role. Actually no one ever reminds me of Cecilia, so I should just relax and enjoy it.  Danielle is the correct Fach for Despina. 

In Cecilia's performance she carried the entire show.  Everyone else on the stage was virtually inert.  That was certainly not the case this time.  This is a terrific, well-balanced and lively cast of wonderful singing actors.  I have to come back to see how it ends.  There are never spoilers for Cosi.  Each production invents a new ending.

I went again and made it to the intermission.  I wanted to see the poison scene.  For her magnet Despina uses pruning shears.  It made me want to see the original again.

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