Thursday, February 18, 2021

Aida from Paris


Director -- Lotte de Beer 
Conductor -- Michele Mariotti 

Amneris - Ksenia Dudnikova
Aida - Sondra Radvanovsky
Radames - Jonas Kaufmann
Amonasro, Aida's father - Ludovic Tézier

We've all been warned.  This production of Aida from Paris is a puppet show, at least in part.  Sondra is dressed in black like the puppeteers.  The above picture shows her and her Aida puppet.  She sings, it acts.  The Ethopians have puppet representations and the Egyptians don't.  That means Amonasro also has a puppet.  I wrote about a different opera, The Abduction from the Seraglio, where two people played each character.  One sang, the other acted and spoke lines.  When I see this, I think they don't think singers can act. Of course now that blackface is forbidden, this might be a way to represent a different race.

Sondra was wonderful.  I believe that she is the best spinto soprano in Italian repertoire singing today.  I gave her a brava in "O patria mia."  Jonas's hair wasn't as straight as we'd feared. It took him a while to warm up.

The chorus members wear masks while singing.  That's a first for me.  I greatly enjoyed the singing but was unenthusiastic about the concept. Here's a sample.

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