Metropolitan Opera 2016-17 Review – Werther: Brilliant Grigolo, Leonard & Powerful ‘Werther’ Production Will Leave You Emotionally Enriched & Exhausted

This review is for the performance on Feb. 20, 2017. Taking in the experience of Massenet’s “Werther” is a rather fascinating one. Not because the music is without a doubt the composer’s finest creation or because the Metropolitan Opera’s production is a dramatic home run (more on that later). It has to do with audience interaction and engagement. Who would {…}

Metropolitan Opera 2016-17 Review – Rusalka: Mary Zimmerman, Kristine Opolais & Company Take Us On Dramatically Rich Journey To Find Operatic Identity

We acknowledge that OperaWire is late to the “Rusalka” party, but here is our review for the performance on Feb. 17, 2017, the fifth performance of this run. Antonín Dvorák’s “Rusalka” is the epitome of a metaphorical operatic identity crisis. The opera, which is a grim version of Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Little Mermaid,” follows the story of a water {…}

Metropolitan Opera Review 2016-17 – I Puritani: Diana Damrau, Javier Camarena & Co. Deliver Golden Age Singing

This review is for the performance on Feb. 11, 2017.  What happens when the Metropolitan Opera casts four superstars into Bellini’s final opera? The answer is golden age singing. For years “I Puritani” has been a vehicle at the Metropolitan Opera to promote the diva and sometimes has made casting uneven with little attention paid to who can sing the incredibly {…}

Metropolitan Opera Review 2016-17 – Carmen: Clémentine Margaine & Company Are Dramatically Fulfilling in Bizet’s Masterpiece

This review is for the performance on Friday, Feb. 3, 2017. When Sophie Koch cancelled all of her performances for Bizet’s “Carmen” at the Metropolitan Opera, attention immediately turned toward Clémentine Margaine, who was set to make her Met debut on Feb. 3. Instead the French mezzo saw her first performance at the history house pushed up two weeks. Of {…}

‘Turandot’ DVD Review: Berio’s Ending in La Scala Release Brings Out The Best in Nina Stemme, Aleksandrs Antonenko & Maria Agresta

The ending of Puccini’s “Turandot” is one of opera’s great tragedies. The composer, at the peak of his power, had composed his most musically daring work to date with some of his most phenomenal strokes of dramatic genius alongside some of his most riveting and enduring melodies. And yet, when he was ever so close to completing it, he hit {…}

Metropolitan Opera 2016-17 Review – La Bohème: This Is No Routine Production As Fabiano, Pérez & Co. Deliver Vivacity to Powerful Tragedy

This review is for the performance on Wednesday January 11 and is written jointly by David & Francisco Salazar. Applause rang from every corner of the Metropolitan Opera, the audience awaiting the final performer to step onstage so that she too could get her accolades. The moment Ailyn Pérez walked out of the iconic golden curtain, she was not only {…}

Metropolitan Opera Review 2016-17 – Il Barbiere di Sivilgia: You Will Have Fun Seeing Camarena, Yende, Mattei & This Refreshing Cast

This review is for the performance on Monday Jan. 10, 2017.  Rossini’s “Il Barbiere di Siviglia” is one of the most famous works in the operatic repertoire as well as one of the funniest. It contains some of the most memorable melodies and space for singers to fool around and provide vocal fireworks. In recent years, the Metropolitan Opera has {…}