Articles tagged with: Verdi
Review: When people talk about high-energy spectacle and romantic intensity in Italian opera, “Il Trovatore” is the classic Exhibit A. An instant hit when it opened in Rome, it’s still a winner. Lyric’s three-way production with the San Francisco Opera and the Met is a concept that remains dynamic and fresh, from the flash and wham of gypsy smithies hammering away at their swords in the extravagant Anvil Chorus, to the tragic love triangle that complicates a civil war unfolding. ★★★★
Review: The best way to experience a performance of Verdi’s “Nabucco” is to think like an actor thinks. Stay in the moment completely. Don’t overthink the logic, the plot complications, the evidence of history. Avoid those traps and the musical impact of “Nabucco” — which is currently on the boards at the Lyric Opera of Chicago, where several mighty singing actors are doing terrific work – will thrill you to your bones.★★★★
UPDATE: Get your finest audio headphones ready: A video on demand is now available here of the CSO’s first-ever simulcast — Giuseppe Verdi’s Requiem with Riccardo Muti conducting the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, soprano Tatiana Serjan, mezzo-soprano Daniela Barcellona, tenor Mario Zeffiri and bass Ildar Abdrazakov.
Review: Villainous Iago’s creed, which holds that man is the sport of unjust fate, must be on the minds of impresarios everywhere when opening night emergencies befall. So it was at the Lyric Opera’s gala opener Oct. 6, when the Iago of Verdi’s “Otello,” Falk Struckmann, made it only through Act 1. Valiant standby Todd Thomas made the save. The Lyric announced that Struckmann will sing Oct. 9. ★★★
Review: Tatiana Serjan is a flat-out thrilling soprano who exudes the temperament of a lioness. She is a Lady Macbeth in her early prime. There isn’t a better place to be this week than Chicago’s Orchestra Hall, where the Russian-born Serjan sings in Verdi’s “Macbeth” under ideal conditions — in concert with other emerging opera stars and the superb forces of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Chorus under Riccardo Muti. ★★★★★
Review: Does the middling label “lesser,” in the habitually repeated rankings of Verdi operas, give presenters a green light to “fix” things that may not be broken? Stage director David Schweizer fell into that trap with the Chicago Opera Theater production of “Giovanna d’Arco.” From a musical standpoint, Verdi’s Joan of Arc opera was a stunning achievement by the 31-year-old composer. COT conductor Francesco Milioto got that. Schweizer, not so much. ★★
Preview: Chicago Opera Theater jumps into the Verdi bicentennial observance this weekend with its season opener, a relatively rare staging of the composer’s early “Giovanna d’Arco.” The stage has not generously embraced this odd riff on Joan of Arc’s life – and death. “It’s one of history’s most extraordinary, mind-bending true stories,” says stage director David Schweizer, “and the audience knows that. But the work is filled with rapturous music.”
Review: Riccardo Muti, winding up his third season as music director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra this weekend, led the orchestra and Chicago Symphony Chorus on a spiritual voyage Thursday night, from luminous Mozart and rapturous Vivaldi to a transcendental peak in Verdi’s glorious “Four Sacred Pieces.” Performances continue through Sunday. ★★★★★
Ravinia Festival Best Bets: If you want to branch out a bit musically, the summertime Ravinia Festival in Highland Park is a good place for it. There, classical music lovers sample niche-expanding novelties of the sort that gave Brooklyn Academy of Music its must-see reputation. College students picnic on the lawn for free when the Chicago Symphony Orchestra performs. And family friendly movie prices rule for recitals featuring the latest contest winners and stars on the rise.
Report: We offer our hot picks.
“Aida” with four new singers. 4 stars!
The Princess’ rival is her slave. 3 stars
Eight operas for 2011-12 include new productions of “Showboat,”Donizetti’s “Lucia di Lammermoor” and Handel’s “Rinaldo.” The new season opens Saturday night with Offenbach’s “The Tales of Hoffmann.”