With the production’s delights of flamenco dancing, passionate arias, magnificent costuming, staging, lighting, soaring melodies, and powerful drama, we ultimately gasp in awe at the power of Bizet’s Fate theme, akin to the tragedy of the last act in Mozart’s Don Giovanni with its piercing melancholy. Carmen’s impact is profound, in part due to Bizet’s launching of the verismo school, where contemporary characters live true to life.
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Taking several newbies to The Metropolitan Opera at Lincoln Center in New York was fascinating and heartwarming as I witnessed their almost instantaneous psychic connection to the multimedia extravaganza with its story, music, drama, characters, setting, orchestra, and amazing choric artistes extraordinaire – the singers.
From the moment lights dimmed and the curtain raised, we saw Puccini’s vision of Madama Butterfly and entered his artistic world, thoroughly suspending our disbelief to participate in a story of sublime creative beauty, poignancy, and tragedy. Lyric soprano Eleonora Buratto’s breathtaking, sumptuous high Db filled the concert hall with rapturous, soaring grandeur.
This event is a gift from the legacy of renowned bass-baritone George London (1920-1985). The Competition introduces and welcomes luminaries of the operatic stage to the world. Past winners of this prestigious competition include Renée Fleming, Sondra Radvanovsky, and Dawn Upshaw. 2022c Competition winner Eric Ferring marvelously conveyed the beauty of each subtle impassioned intone of the music in the bel canto style with mastery of messe di voce, phrasing, agility, and sangfroid.