Sunday Morning Opera: The Victory Lap


Screen Shot 2015-09-11 at 9.53.10 PMThe opera world has been in something of a crises this summer after the shocking announcement by our favorite baritone.  This week he returned to the Metropolitan Opera, on a limited schedule, to do three performances of Trovatore.  His return is made very poignant for me after the sudden and tragic loss of a young family member to a very rare form of cancer. I found the clip, below, which you can apparently only view via the Met’s FB page, at the same time I was talking to a cousin, about the diagnosis, which was just a few hours before he was gone. I sent it to Linda, telling her miracles do happen.

My view of Il Trovatore has been forever tainted by Marxism, as in A Night at the Opera.  For many years, I could not even watch a performance of it.  I would reach a certain part and just start laughing. I still can’t listen to the overture without automatically starting to sing Take Me Out to the Ballgame!

The quality is terrible, so go watch the movie.

 Now that I’ve managed to get that out of my system, this is where I admit there have been Metropolitan Opera productions where I would have welcomed the interruption.  There was an absolutely revolting production of MacBeth when the Met was on tour in Atlanta.  I sat there, thinking about the scene above, during the topless ballet.  There is another scene where Harpo and Chico hijack the tenor and replace him with the young, heroic tenor.  I kept watching the performance and thinking about how badly I wish the baritone (who was filling in for Sherrill Milnes) should be subjected to the same treatment.  The specific baritone shall remain nameless.  During those dark days, unlike today, the Met really didn’t have much of a choice.  There wasn’t the wealth of leading baritones we have today.  There are so many incredible baritones, there is no logical nor reasonable explanation for why Peter Gelb insists on fielding a couple (who shall remain nameless) who are truly inferior.  One of them is doing opening night.

Verdi’s Il Trovatore In RehearsalA sneak peek of Verdi’s IL TROVATORE, opening September 25! Check out Anna Netrebko (Leonora), Dmitri Hvorostovsky (Count di Luna), and Yonghoon Lee (Manrico) in yesterday’s rehearsal.

Posted by The Metropolitan Opera on Friday, September 11, 2015

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Let’s be hones there, why even bother with tenors?