Alexander Birch Elliott To Sing Remaining Met Opera ‘Pêcheur de Perles’ Performances

By David Salazar

The Metropolitan Opera has announced that Alexander Birch Elliott will sing the remaining performances of “Les Pêcheurs de Perles.”

Mariusz Kwiecien, who was originally cast, as Zurga will sit out due to illness. Kwiecien reportedly sang the first three performances, but constantly withdrew at the first interval due to his illness. The Polish baritone had sung the original run of the production a few years ago alongside Diana Damrau and Matthew Polenzani, but his return has not been quite as successful.

Elliott made his debut at the Met during the first performance of this run, with OperaWire’s Logan Martell noting,  “Despite being thrown into the ensuing chaos, Elliott’s heightened emotion made for a mostly smooth transition between performers; one difference I noted seemed to be that Elliott slightly bent his tall frame as if weighed down by inner conflict, causing him to loom over most of the other performers and physically suggest his authority over them.”

There are four performances of the opera remaining. Pretty Yende is set to sing all of them except for the Dec. 8 showcase; she will be replaced by Amanda Woodbury. Javier Camarena will appear as Nadir for all of the shows. Emmanuel Villaume conducts.