Eerste bedrijf[ bewerken brontekst bewerken ] De opera begint in een saloon , gevuld met goudzoekers. Alle typische karaktertrekken van de goudzoekers komen aan bod: het drinken, het gokken, het heimwee, kortom het geromantiseerde beeld van het leven in het Wilde Westen. De kijker komt te weten dat de ruige goudzoekers wel een goed hart hebben, dat Ramerrez een gezocht crimineel is en dat de saloon uitgebaat wordt door de jonge Minnie, die als enige vrouw zowat wordt gezien als de "moeder" van alle goudzoekers. Sommige goudzoekers zijn uiteraard verliefd op de bekoorlijke Minnie, onder andere Rance, de sheriff.
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One of the major reasons for this is that it is one of his bigger operas, the main cast extending beyond a central trio or quartet of leads, the secondary characters playing prominent roles throughout the major drama. The Metropolitan Opera, the company that gave literal birth to this very work, has been just as guilty of leaving the opera on the repertory sidelines, its most recent production coming back in Fortunately, the company has revived the work and with a cast that reminds us that it is truly one of the greatest masterpieces ever written.
A Rough Start The opening night performance on Oct. The Italian maestro is old reliable in the sense that everything he does is always of top quality. The prelude rocked with bombastic energy, the volume imposing and eruptive; it was enough to get you excited, but yet there seemed some unease in the overall cohesion of the ensemble. He was extremely sensitive to the singers and from a few glances I made his way it clear that his attention was squarely on them.
The orchestra riveted the entire time, whether it be the ecstatic climaxes, or in quieter moments of potent subtlety or maximum tension. The card scene is one of the finest in the score, Puccini deftly stripping the orchestral down further and further as the match progresses until all we are left with ostinato pizzicato in the lower strings, the sound quiet, but audible enough to generate massive intensity in the action.
This was perfectly executed by the Met Orchestra under Armiliato. In other sections, you could feel the entire musical conception of the work come together with drive and yet ample breadth to give singers a chance to do what they do best. And that they certainly did. Whether it be the homesick Jake sung with delicacy by Oren Gradus to gentlemanly Sonora or the loyal Nick, the cast of miners are all unique in their own ways.
A Golden Girl The title character is a truly demanding role for any soprano, requiring a quasi-Wagnerian voice that still has the agility of a more lyric soprano. She commanded the stage at every juncture from the moment she arrived, admonishing the boys for their bad behavior. As she revealed her sense of nothingness, her voice took on a finer complexity, the vibrato lessened significantly. She stood still for most of this exchange, her look toward the ground, giving the sense of a vulnerable character scared to reveal her truth and also fighting with the sense of self-worth.
Here, Westbroek drew the listener in as she seemed to grow quieter with every phrase. The innocent romantic we had seen in the love duet was suddenly gone and in her stead was pure anger. Just watching her body language as she wandered about the stage, trying to control herself and not give her lover away, was pure tension. While the other men were talking and relating their discovery, it was her that your attention was drawn to. Even when she finally opens the door we feel that the transition to this moment has been earned and it feels all the more riveting.
And then there was the card scene, where Westbroek battled for her life, throwing off the predatory advances of Rance with aggressive vocal fire, staring him down during their climactic card game; she was his equal every step of the way and you sensed Minnie growing stronger by the minute.
Minnie saves Ramirez from Rance in Act two and then she takes it to the next level by saving him from certain death yet again in the final Act, this time confronting the entire miner community. The final ensemble of this work features the entire cast and the soprano is tasked with rocketing her voice through the thickness of it all.
And Westbroek did just that, consolidating herself as the true heroine on the night in all facets. And she still has quite a few performances to go. It was his first crack at the role and it looked like the tenor took some time to get comfortable. The result was that the sweeping phrase never took off and soared as it often does. The tenor hit all the right notes quite potently and assuredly you could never fault Eyvazov of having anything but a solid and sturdy technique , though you wondered how he might handle the more challenging second and third Act.
He did so magnificently. From his entrance in the second Act, it was clear that the tenor was at home vocally with the music. He was fully engaged dramatically with Westbroek they had strong rapport throughout the night and his singing blossomed.
His reading of the famed aria was expansive, allowing the tenor to create a more prayer-like mood with the aria, the opening phrases sung piannissimo. This was further supported by luxurious legato phrasing, each note beautifully joined with the previous, the phrasing organic.
From here he built to the climax, each phrase crescendoing and growing until the climactic high B flat fermata, which the tenor sustained with everything he had; the ensuing A flat had a powerful accent that he carried through the end of the line, expressing intense desperation.
After the initial hesitance in Act one, Eyvazov put on an immaculate vocal display that proved one of the strong points of the performance as a whole. One might imagine that over the course of his three remaining performances his Act one will be on the level of his work in the final two. And during his opening lines it did seem that the audience would be in for a long night with the baritone, his sound barely audible through the thick orchestra; when compared to the potent projection of other artists, Lucic seemed to pale in comparison.
And it would only get better, the baritone clearly engaged not only vocally, but dramatically. In many ways, Rance is a more complex Scarpia. Both are men of the law, but while the more famed villain is a despot bent on using his power in any way it serves him, Rance is more complex and nuanced.
He has no gripes about using his power as it suits him, but he also has a heart and is capable of love. And yet in the second Act, struck by intense jealousy, he grabbed Minnie in a way that could only be described as sexual assault.
And then came the card scene. Lucic was all business in the game, aggressive in how he handled each card, how he threw the deck on the table, and how he glared at Minnie, a predatory look if there ever was one. The way he barked his dialogue only added to his intimidating nature in this scene, fueling the tension evermore.
The two were electric in this moment, everything else falling away, our eyes and ears squarely on two people sitting and talking at a table. You could see the anger and fury grow throughout this act, climaxing in his outrage when the other miners turned on him. He stood over them all, yet with their guns pointed at him, he looked frustrated at his newfound powerlessness.
But then he stops and stares at it, indecisive as to what he might do next. Perhaps, unlike the lovers who can hope for a new future, Rance, an old-time Sheriff, is nothing but a relic of the past with no future. And in the context of the MeToo movement, Rance, a man whose own power could not help him get the woman he wanted, also has no place in the future.
By setting it in the world that Puccini and Belasco originally intended, revival director Gregory Keller Giancarlo del Monaco was the original visionary behind the production and his team can find new details that will allow themes to breathe and come to life. This ending is but one example, but the entire production is rife with directorial brilliance. You have a table on stage left and the bar on stage right. A massive staircase leads to a second floor and a door upstage looms.
The table on stage left is established as an area of importance right from the opening image of the opera, Rance seated there bitterly. Most key interactions take place here throughout the act, the constant return to the table a subtle but strong directorial choice; it becomes instinctual for the audience to constantly look in that direction amongst the clutter of other characters, creating a sense of clarity in the viewing experience.
Again, the directors of the production showcase a sense of efficiency with the staging and you could sense that the actors are also fully invested in the choices. The lovers are generally placed at the center of the cabin in their main exchanges and the card scene, off to a corner of the cabin, is extremely cinematic in its focus. Nothing else is there to distract from the action and the audience has nowhere to look but right at the actors sitting and playing cards.
Restraint can be just as effective, if not more. The paler color palette creates a sense of a dying era, which plays up the nostalgic emotion prevalent throughout the opera. This is great directing. He also had the opportunity of interviewing numerous Oscar nominees, Golden Globe winners and film industry giants such as Guillermo del Toro, Oscar Isaac and John Leguizamo among others.
During his time at Fordham, he studied abroad at the Jagiellonian University in Poland. Stories you may also like….
LA FANCIULLA DEL WEST
One of the major reasons for this is that it is one of his bigger operas, the main cast extending beyond a central trio or quartet of leads, the secondary characters playing prominent roles throughout the major drama. The Metropolitan Opera, the company that gave literal birth to this very work, has been just as guilty of leaving the opera on the repertory sidelines, its most recent production coming back in Fortunately, the company has revived the work and with a cast that reminds us that it is truly one of the greatest masterpieces ever written. A Rough Start The opening night performance on Oct. The Italian maestro is old reliable in the sense that everything he does is always of top quality.
La fanciulla del West (The girl of the golden West)
A group of miners playing cards discover that Sid is cheating and want to attack him. A Wells Fargo agent, Ashby, enters and announces that he is chasing the bandit Ramerrez and his gang of Mexicans. Rance toasts Minnie, the woman who owns the saloon, as his future wife, which makes Sonora jealous. The two men begin to fight. Rance draws his revolver but at that moment, a shot rings out and Minnie stands next to the bar with a rifle in her hands "Hello, Minnie! She gives the miners a reading lesson from the Bible "Dove eravamo?
La fanciulla del West
Julkis Fanciull, affaccendato, va e viene con bottiglie e bic- chieri dalla saletta superiore alla sala da ballo. Mi stringo a te, confuso cuore a cuor, sol con te! Un gruppo di minatori esce precipitosamente dalla sala da ballo. Whoever cares out here To fanciuloa the name of strangers? Viva la nostra Minnie!
Metropolitan Opera 2018-19 Review: La Fanciulla Del West