Vickers was my introduction to opera. I saw his Peter Grimes at Lyric Opera
of Chicago in 1977. We sat in the last row of the upper balcony, as far
from the stage as you could get, and it was as if he was singing next to us.
Powerful presence. When they told him to sink the boat, we were thinking,
"Good idea. He's nuts!"
In the next few years, I was able to hear his Tristan (twice) and Florestan.
Alas, I wasn't able to hear his Otello. The strangest was Pagliacci, where
his particular kind of intensity didn't work for me but most likely that was
my lack of perception.
Those were the first years of my opera going so I missed a lot of the
nuances. But the presence was always powerful and his commitment was
After seeing him in 1977, we started subscribing the next year and have been
in Series F, Upper Balcony, Row K, 22-24, ever since. Another example of
Vickers' powerful influence - he made us do it!!
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