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Subject: Re: Parsifal: Met Saturday Matinee
From: Jon Goldberg <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Jon Goldberg <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Sat, 17 Feb 2018 20:54:35 -0500
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And - since I have only seen stills from the production, instead of seeing it live - what the 
F*** is it with all the CHAIRS??? 

Mind you, I have no problem with chairs as practical places to sit upon, of course. But it 
seems to be this manic konzept at the Met (and elsewhere - like the recent Broadway 
revival of The Color Purple) for chairs to dominate the stage as something oh-so-
metaphorical. Sometimes a soprano even has to climb over them as she sleepwalks, for 
god's sake. I'm sick of it. Can we please have a new set gimmick already? ;-)


On Sat, 17 Feb 2018 20:17:00 -0500, donald kane <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

>Yes, the problem with all these controversial modern directors is
>that they think something needs to be happening all the time.  No
>one who loved and understood that music would do such a thing.
>
>dtmk
>
>On Sat, Feb 17, 2018 at 7:52 PM, <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>
>> My husband and I were at the MET today for Parsifal. I agree with Donald,
>> Paul and Bob. Vogt did play the innocent very well. We were not displeased
>> with him. My big complaint:  during the Good Friday music - why must there
>> be all this stupid stage business to distract from the glorious music?!
>> Why do directors think they need to entertain us during orchestral
>> interludes?  I looked over to my husband and he had closed his eyes -
>> haha, we were thinking the same thing.
>>
>> Sent from my iPhone
>>
>> > On Feb 17, 2018, at 7:42 PM, donald kane <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> >
>> > I thought the Kundry and the Parsifal were adequate, no more; everything
>> > else, as you,. Bob, and Paul have said, was eminently satisfying.  Most
>> > satisfying of all is the music.  Putting EVERYTHING else aside, does
>> > music, as music, get any better than PARSIFAL?  To anyone who says
>> > how about Mozart and Verdi , I say let's change the subject.
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> > dtmk
>> >
>> > On Sat, Feb 17, 2018 at 6:15 PM, RONALD MAGNUSON <
>> [log in to unmask]>
>> > wrote:
>> >
>> >> I also was impressed with Nézet-Séguin today, in spite of a tentative
>> >> start. The slow sections shimmered with etherial string playing and
>> >> glorious brass utterances.  He has a fine sense of the score and
>> produces
>> >> biting accents, crisp rhythms and finely balanced, individually colored
>> >> ensembles. He knows how to implement an effective ritard to lead to a
>> >> shattering climax. Really nicely done.
>> >>
>> >> I thought that Pape sounded thin with a hint of a hollowed out bass at
>> his
>> >> opening phrases but then seemed to gather strength as he progressed.  As
>> >> was mentioned, his exquisite phrasing and sensitive voice coloring to
>> shape
>> >> each phrase produced a masterful interpretation.
>> >>
>> >> Vogt's interpretation was highly unusual to these ears, as a young
>> >> sounding, unheroic Parsifal.  It worked for me as far as the "pure fool"
>> >> was concerned, but the lack of vocal characterization with the
>> development
>> >> of the character became problematic.  Everything that he sang sounded
>> >> "pretty".  The same approach, the same dynamics, the same phrasing
>> produced
>> >> a monotonous result for me.
>> >>
>> >> I concur with Mr Padillo's perceptive comments about the rest of a very
>> >> satisfying DAY of music.
>> >>
>> >>
>> >> Ron Magnuson
>> >>
>> >>
>> >>
>> >>
>> >>>
>> >>
>> >>> On February 17, 2018 at 5:31 PM "G. Paul Padillo" wrote:
>> >>>
>> >>>
>> >>>    As predicted, while the prima was wonderful, today's matinee
>> >> performance (as is usually the
>> >>>    case) this 2nd (and final) broadcast it for the season, was
>> >> absolutely remarkable. Maestro
>> >>>    Nézet-Séguin had more "pull" with that spiritual feel (are there
>> >> better words to describe
>> >>>    this?) in certain slower sections. There was much in evidence with
>> >> that vibration in the
>> >>>    strings again making the score electrifying even in quiet moments.
>> >> The chorus, of course,
>> >>>    was exemplary and the music making was at that level one always
>> >> hopes to experience.
>> >>>    We did.
>> >>>
>> >>>    Rene Pape sounded healthier and stronger in the lower range than the
>> >> prima, the lowest
>> >>>    passages firm and elegantly produced; each word of Gurnemanz's
>> >> narrations weighted for
>> >>>    maximum impact. His great first act narrative bringing tears to my
>> >> eyes. Then, as he
>> >>>    always does in the Good Friday music - presenting only some of the
>> >> most moving singing
>> >>>    one will likely hear in this music today. When I first heard his
>> >> Gurnemanz, years ago, the
>> >>>    phrasing throughout was perfection, but at:
>> >>>
>> >>>    "Das dankt dann alle Kreatur, was all' da blüht und bald erstirbt da
>> >> die entsündigte Natur
>> >>>    heut' ihren Unschuldstag erwirbt."
>> >>>
>> >>>    just the delivery of "alle Kreatur" took my breath away. It did so
>> >> again today.
>> >>>
>> >>>    I've come to the conclusion Yvegny Nikitin is, hands down, the
>> >> greatest Klingsor in my
>> >>>    lifelong obsession with this opera. No one has ever roared, ripped
>> >> and blasted their way
>> >>>    through the role, nor presented a more maniacal, masculine menace
>> >> with such enormity of
>> >>>    sound than he. While Klingsor is the bad guy, you need one to make
>> >> the heroes "heroes."
>> >>>    I am looking forward to seeing/hearing his performance as I am any
>> >> other element of this
>> >>>    entire opera.
>> >>>
>> >>>    Ms. Herlitzius sounded better - a little "smoother" but still will
>> >> always be a Kundry of the
>> >>>    "wildling" order. Her Act II was thrilling and played off of Vogt's
>> >> boyish hero perfectly,
>> >>>    adding a "Mrs. Robinson" quality to the proceedings.
>> >>>
>> >>>    I didn't think Peter Mattei could do more than he did earlier, but
>> >> today the totality of his
>> >>>    Amfortas again was simply heart wrenching. The perfect portrayal
>> >> despair and anguish that
>> >>>    somehow made those two things sound never less than beautiful.
>> >>>
>> >>>    I've gotten used to applause at the end of Act I, and although I
>> >> don't applaud still, recall a
>> >>>    Met Parsifal sometime back, when I didn't applaud, after the first
>> >> act curtain, and my entire
>> >>>    row turned and looked at me as though I'd just eaten their young.
>> >>>
>> >>>    I cannot, however, abide idiots who begin, as happened today,
>> >> applauding WHILE the
>> >>>    orchestra is still playing the final bars. I can forgive and even
>> >> "get it" at the end of a blood
>> >>>    'n thunder opera, but Parsifal simply IS NOT an opera you jump in
>> >> clapping during the last
>> >>>    bar. A nuisance, but even that could not spoil what was nearly as
>> >> perfect an afternoon of
>> >>>    opera as one could hope for.
>> >>>
>> >>>    Bravo a tutti to all involved!
>> >>>
>> >>>    p.
>> >>>
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