Sunday, March 2, 2008

March 1st: A Play-by-Play PART II

LET BE KNOWN FROM THIS MOMENT FORTH THAT OLGA BORODINA IS OFFICIALLY ADDED TO MY LIST OF "THE COOLEST MEZZO'S EVER." That list also includes Frederica von Stade, Stephanie Blythe, Marilyn Horne, Joyce DiDonato, and a few others.

Olga was also my first mezzo ever. She was Laura in "La Gioconda" last season, which happened to be my first opera. (I didn't have the blog then, sorry.) I thought she was cool then, but I wasn't exactly rooting for her so I didn't notice her all that much.

Her Carmen made me laugh a lot. I didn't remember Carmen being this funny. Her singing was so amazing. The "Habanera" was, well, the Habanera! The Seguidilla and her little dance for Don Jose were fantastic. This is one of the first times I've had a strong urge to sing along. Don't worry, I controlled myself! There are so many sing-able tunes in Carmen. What a masterpiece. She was very believable and her emotions were so real. Just before Act III a man came in front of the curtain to many groans and grumbles. "I'm not making a casting change," he assured us, "But Ms. Borodina is suffering from some allergies and she hopes you understand." Okay. So, she didn't sound any different than the other two acts. She still sounded amazing, so I wasn't sure what the point of it was. Anyway, Olga Borodina rules.

Marcelo Alvarez was great vocally, but his sudden falling in love with Carmen looked completely out of the blue. His rage and hatred looked great, though. The "Flower Song" was lovely and he sounded very clear and crisp.

One of the biggest ovations of the night went rightfully to Krassimira Stoyanova. I usually dislike Micaela a lot, but I realized how beautiful her music was. What a marvelous soprano she is! It's a wonder I haven't heard more of her. Her big aria was so beautiful and she got a huge ovation after the aria and at curtain calls.

Lucio Gallo is not my first choice for Escamillo. His "Votre Toast" was mostly drowned out by the orchestra and the high notes sounded pushed and loud. It got better as the night went on, but he doesn't have that much to sing after that.

I forgot to mention this in "Otello", but the chorus sounded great yesterday. During both performances they were stunning. The orchestra, too! Sublime, as usual. Of course, what else do you expect from the Met?

So yes, me and my uncle were waiting for a while in the lobby before Carmen started. They kicked us out of Fiorello's (just kidding, they said we needed to be out by a certain time because they had reservations) at around 6:15, so we stood around the lobby for a while. I'm starting to get bored when a familiar looking man comes from the house into the lobby. It hits me "Oh my gosh, that's Peter Gelb!" I whisper to my uncle. I couldn't move I was so shocked, I just stood there and galked. My uncle nudged me "Go talk to him!" Too late, he walked out, watching me stare stupidly at him. He strolled across the plaza and out into the street. He didn't come back. I knew then that there were no casting changes. I felt really special seeing him. He runs the place! He's pretty important!

Happy Listening!!! =)

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