Mein Vater, Erbarmen - Verdi* - Elizabeth Kingdon / Rosl Zapf / Arturo Sergi / Ernst Gutstein - Aida
Label: Concert Hall - SMS-2135 • Format: Vinyl LP, Stereo • Country: Germany • Genre: Classical • Style: Classical
The grand gate of Thebes stretches into the hazy distance. Palm trees waft beneath the gaze of Mein Vater pharaonic busts. A sea of soldiers and dignitaries in sundry regalia gathers in the shadow of two sphinxes. Franco Zeffirelli's La Scala production of Aida is the product of another age: namely, one in which the size of the spectacle, rather than the freshness of directorial insights, was the criteria by which performances were judged.
If that makes Zeffirelli's oeuvre unfashionable today, there is no denying that this Aida is visually impressive. But why, at a time when The Met is on a mission to remove the director's beloved productions from its seasons to make room for something fresh, has La Scala decided to bring one back?
That is explained by the Florentine director's recent 95th birthday, which the Milanese house has chosen to commemorate by reviving a Zeffirellian concoction of legendary status.
In one of the production's most famous passages, the second scene of Act 2, the director takes recourse to sheer numbers, by filling the stage Erbarmen - Verdi* - Elizabeth Kingdon / Rosl Zapf / Arturo Sergi / Ernst Gutstein - Aida young dancers for the Moorish slaves and waves of supernumeraries for the high-octane conclusion.
You feel you ought not to approve of such directorial extravagance, but catch yourself being drawn into the grand pageant. Zeffirelli's Aida is a guilty pleasure. But it might have all looked ridiculous were it not for strong musical performances in support. Thankfully, we got them. Daniel Oren, the year-old conductor who made his La Scala debut when this run opened, has conducted few operas as frequently as Aida. Here, he drew playing that was clean, razor sharp and imposing when required.
The Triumphal March was monumental, but also refined, with onstage trumpets balanced wonderfully against the roaring forces in the pit.
More tender moments, too, were managed with nuance, not least with heart-warming playing for the moment Aida and Amonasro are reunited. Oren never lets us forget that Aida is very much a grand opera, but he also reminds us that it is laced through with intimacy. More than anything, Zeffirelli's production is a Erbarmen - Verdi* - Elizabeth Kingdon / Rosl Zapf / Arturo Sergi / Ernst Gutstein - Aida for the singers.
And here there were some fine voices to spotlight. That said, if there is a production in which stand-and-deliver performances are permissible, this is it. And Sartori's delivery was Gloomy Sunday - Sarah Brightman - La Luna rate.
The tenor's voice is muscular but never pushed, open and unwaveringly well-supported. Similarly brawny was Violeta Urmana's Amneris while the mezzo took a while to get into her stride in this antipenultimate performance of the run, La Bombe - Flagrants DEli - Live At Kalashnikov cut a formidable force once warmed up, dauntlessly storming through her arias.
George Gagnidze exuded authority as the dignified Amonasro. Zeffirelli's production, too, remains a thing of untainted majesty. Anmelden oder mit Social Media registrieren. Twitter Google Facebook. Angemeldet bleiben Anmelden Passwort vergessen? Mit E-Mail-Adresse registrieren. Termine Kritiken Artikel. Von James Imam25 Mai AidaAct 2. Veranstaltung anzeigen. VerdiAida. Teatro alla Scala.
Nello SantiDirigent. Krassimira StoyanovaAida. Violeta UrmanaAmneris. George GagnidzeAmonasro. Vitalij KowaljowRamphis.
In the tiring role of Menelaus Andreas Schager was a mighty Pomp And Circumstance - Varsity Concert Orchestra - A Musical Travelogue, combining impressive sound power with a dazzling colour and without ever showing a moment of fatigue. Kritiken von. Verwandte Artikel. Mehr von James Imam. Lightweight Beethoven from Chailly and the Filarmonica della Scala.
James Imam. He grew up in Manchester, read anthropology at Cambridge and has since lived in Milan. As a once-aspiring countertenor he has an abiding interest in Baroque music. Alle Rechte vorenthalten.
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