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Subject: Re: Eugene Onegin at the Met on April 12
From: ANGELO MAMMANO <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:ANGELO MAMMANO <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Sun, 16 Apr 2017 23:09:04 -0400

text/plain (132 lines)

I saw Mattei as Onegin with Poplavskaya and Kocan  at the Met.  Mattei was very

good and was a far better singer than his soprano partner.  She seems to have

disappeared from the operatic scene since that engagement.  Villazon was rather

small-voiced but still strong and Kuda, kuda was heartfelt and moving.  Kocan was

given such a slow tempo for the aria and he held his third from the last note for

such a long time that the audience applauded then and there.  Kocan broke

character,  turned to his colleagues and smiled.  After that interruption  he finished

the aria. 

I have loved the opera for many years and love it still. I agree that the present Met

production is poor.  The previous one which was used recently at Chicago Lyric is

much better.  Of course Dmitri as Onegin is unsurpassable.  I hope that he is able

to make it to Tanglewood in August for the operatic concert with Opolais.  BTW

there has been some scuttlebutt that she will be forced to withdraw from the Tosca

at the Met next season.  I wonder if that means that Nelsons will cancel like he did

at Bayreuth.  We, subscribers to the BSO are experiencing a surfeit of Opolais.

Her next appearance here is for the Mahler 4th.  Not too demanding, for sure.

Angelo from Boston

>     On April 16, 2017 at 5:09 PM Alain Letort <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>     Thank you very much, Idia. How could I have forgotten about Gremin and his beautiful,
>     haunting aria? I guess I was nearing the end of my review and hunger pangs were
>     starting to gnaw at me since it was getting on 2 p.m. and I hadn’t had lunch yet.
>     Stefan Kocan started his big aria, “Lyubvi fse vozrastï pokornï” (“All ages surrender to
>     love”) rather underwhelmingly, and I thought, “oh no, please don’t botch this!,” but very
>     quickly he recovered and the second and third verses were very, very good indeed, with
>     all those great low notes just where they should be. Not quite a home run but close.
>     Lensky’s aria “Kuda, kuda vï udalilis” was hauntingly exquisite and I am sure you will
>     enjoy it very, very much. All the Russian women were swooning. I am certain I heard
>     feminine sighs when he finished his aria.
>     I hope I didn’t come across as critical of Peter Mattei’s performance. He sang flawlessly,
>     as I said before with great elegance and refinement, but Russian baritones and basses do
>     have that certain special color in their voices that non-Russians usually don’t have.
>     Genetics, I suppose, like those legendary Slavic high cheekbones. That doesn't mean I
>     didn’t enjoy his performance, I did so, very much indeed, but perhaps I would have liked
>     Dmitri just that little bit more.
>     Thanks to other Listers for pointing out that Mattei was a wonderful Wolfram and
>     Amfortas. I’m sure that’s true, but not having seen him in either “Tannhäuser” or
>     “Parsifal” I was not in a position to speak to that and I didn’t. I’d like to hear Mattei in
>     “Tannhäuser,” but frankly, after three live “Parsifals” in my lifetime, I find myself enjoying
>     it less and less as time goes by, in fact the last time I saw it I didn’t enjoy it at all (with
>     the exception of the always awesome Karfreitagsmusik). In my lifetime I have warmed
>     up to a number of operas I didn’t enjoy upon first hearing, but “Parsifal” is the only opera
>     I can think of that I dislike more and more with each hearing. Sorry, that’s just how it is.
>     “Eugene Onegin,” on the other hand, is an opera I loved on first hearing 47 years ago and
>     my enjoyment of it is undiminished. I’d go back and see it again next week if I could.
>     Cheers and all the best,
>     Alain
>     Alain Letort
>     Washington, D.C.
>     Des Ungeheuers Höhle
>     ===================================================
>     On Sun, 16 Apr 2017 15:04:31 -0400, Idia Legray <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>         > > 
> >         Thank you Alain for a beautiful review of one of my favorite operas.
> >         I am not at all surprised that her Nebs was top notch. I suspect when I see
> >         the HD next week that I will like Mattei a bit better than the Russians in the
> >         audience did. I so look forward to Dolgov's "Kuda,kuda", one of my top 5
> >         favorite tenor arias.
> > 
> >         But what of Kocan who sings that haunting Gremin's aria? You didn't
> >         mention him and I am hoping he hit a home run.
> > 
> >     > 
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