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Subject: Nabucco at the Met / FT review / Domingo does it!
From: janosG <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:janosG <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Wed, 14 Dec 2016 11:44:43 -0800

text/plain (66 lines)
Metropolitan Opera, New York

	Plácido Domingo, born in 1941, is an over-achiever. No lesser
description will do.

	Having made his Met debut in 1968, he has sung more than 650
performances spanning 49 roles at Lincoln Center.  On the side, he has spent
more than 150 evenings on the podium, leading ten different challenges.
Altogether he has made more than 4,000 appearances in opera houses

	He shows no sign of slowing down, and there he was, Monday night,
making his mark on the title role of Verdi’s +Nabucco+.  Although the
programme identifies him as a tenor, he now concentrates on lower vehicles.
Still, one nasty question lingers: is a tenor without top notes really a

	The ever- beloved baritenor got through Nabucco without mishap,
thanks to his intelligence and fervour. It would be less than realistic to
claim that he commands the ideal vocal richness, force and colour for this
sort of assignment. Nevertheless, his intelligence, steadiness and
dedication provide reasonable compensations.

	On this occasion, he had to contend with Elijah Moshinsky’s awkward
quasi-mod staging, introduced in 2001 and now overseen by J. Knighton Smit.
John Napier’s cumbersome round-table set confronts the inmates with silly
obstacle courses and mazes of treacherous stairs. Unperturbed, everyone
clambered bravely.

	Confronting the impossible passion, agility and fury of Abigaille,
Liudmyla Monastryska struck petulant poses while singing stridently one
moment, mellifluously the next. Jamie Barton as Fenena made one regret that
Nabucco’ s daughter has little to sing. Dmitry Belosselskiy exuded priestly
dignity as Zaccaria, even when his bass evaporated in descending phrases.

	Now serving officially as music-director +emeritus+, James Levine
conducted with his customary concern for suavity underlying propulsion. A

	Incidental intelligence: The biggest hit in +Nabucco+ must be the
choral prayer +Va, pensiero+.  At the Met it has traditionally enjoyed a
rare, built-in encore, and this performance was no exception. The clap-happy
audience no doubt would have been pleased with a third time ‘round. In any
case, the fine Met chorus savoured both moments of glory.


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