Jump to content

Royal Opera: Otello


Bruce Wall
 Share

Recommended Posts

18 minutes ago, Geoff said:

 

 

 

Perhaps I am being unnecessarily picky. But as the department responsible spelled their star guest Jonas Kaufmann's name three different ways on just a couple of pages of an Insight programme, each time incorrectly, I wonder if they are completely on top of things. Are they still called Education? 

 

 

 

 

Had to laugh.  I came in last night from the opening performance of this new production 'Otello' - a generally fine one, well done by all - to turn on the BBC's Newsnight - only to find the last seconds of a feature on Jonas Kaufmann.  I pushed the 'info' button and a list of that evening's guests came up in the BBC listing.  They had him down as 'Yonas Kaufman'!! :)   Bet you anything he's used to it ... and, hey, as long as they get it right on the cheque ... or .. erm ... electronic transfer :)

 

Edited by Bruce Wall
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

41 minutes ago, penelopesimpson said:

I have tickets for the 10th?  Is he great?  The reviews are a tad mixed?

 

He's great-ish, in that the quiet passages show JK as great as he always been, whereas the high volume sections (of which there are some notorious examples in this part) suggest the voice changed during last year's trouble (it's all there, don't get me wrong, just not as blazing as it was, compare e.g. that Parsifal at the Met).

 

Shouldn't we do this on the opera part of the Forum though?!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • alison changed the title to Royal Opera: Otello

I saw Otello on Saturday and loved it. JK definitely pulled it off. Slightly tentative start - good but not outstanding - but got better and better. Marco Vratogna made for a suitably villainous Iago and you could have heard a pin drop during Maria Agresta's exquisite Act 4.

 

The sets were nothing special but ok, if a little obvious in terms of imagery, particularly the incongruously modern white bedroom, which felt as out of place as the children's play room in Norma, and the costumes retained the necessary period feel.

 

Orchestra and chorus both outstanding and Pappano at his best - passionate and compelling.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

19 hours ago, Scheherezade said:

I saw Otello on Saturday and loved it. JK definitely pulled it off. Slightly tentative start - good but not outstanding - but got better and better. Marco Vratogna made for a suitably villainous Iago and you could have heard a pin drop during Maria Agresta's exquisite Act 4.

 

The sets were nothing special but ok, if a little obvious in terms of imagery, particularly the incongruously modern white bedroom, which felt as out of place as the children's play room in Norma, and the costumes retained the necessary period feel.

 

Orchestra and chorus both outstanding and Pappano at his best - passionate and compelling.

Ooh, can't wait for the 10th.  Hope JK stays standing till then!  Are there three intervals?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just to say: anyone who might have read underwhelming reviews and possibly be expecting disappointment, I attended the dress rehearsal, press night and second night, and press night was by far the weakest of the three!  Second night, Saturday 24th June, was like a completely different show and very exciting indeed.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Just to say, last night saw Gregory Kunde give his first Otello at ROH. Some people will already have seen him at Covent Garden (Trovatore) but Otello is his part. I heard him do it on the car radio a couple of years ago and pulled off the road to sit in a lay by to listen till the end, having at the time had no idea who he was. Some tickets for his performances are still available. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Geoff said:

Just to say, last night saw Gregory Kunde give his first Otello at ROH. Some people will already have seen him at Covent Garden (Trovatore) but Otello is his part. I heard him do it on the car radio a couple of years ago and pulled off the road to sit in a lay by to listen till the end, having at the time had no idea who he was. Some tickets for his performances are still available. 

I also saw him on Saturday and thoroughly enjoyed his performance.  Thought the chorus was on terrific form. I think the production is more or less Ok, although I couldn't quite see the point of Desdemona apparently coming up from beneath the stage at one point. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, alison said:

How far in advance do they do the dress rehearsal?  A couple of days, to give the singers a break?

 

It's generally 2-3 days in advance (this was actually 4, as it was on a Saturday prior to a Wednesday opening - I've never known them have dress rehearsals on Sundays there). Though revivals of the war-horses sometimes don't get one at all, or they'll put on a schools matinee which is in lieu of one.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, Geoff said:

Just to say, last night saw Gregory Kunde give his first Otello at ROH. Some people will already have seen him at Covent Garden (Trovatore) but Otello is his part. I heard him do it on the car radio a couple of years ago and pulled off the road to sit in a lay by to listen till the end, having at the time had no idea who he was. Some tickets for his performances are still available. 

I'm looking forward to hearing him next Saturday, though it won't be the first time I have heard him sing the role - I heard him do it in Madrid last autumn.

 

7 hours ago, ninamargaret said:

I also saw him on Saturday and thoroughly enjoyed his performance.  Thought the chorus was on terrific form. I think the production is more or less Ok, although I couldn't quite see the point of Desdemona apparently coming up from beneath the stage at one point. 

 

This is a point that won't have been mentioned in the reviews, as it didn't happen on the first night!  I'd assumed, having seen the dress rehearsal when it got quite a laugh and IMO looked quite silly (also a few minutes earlier when the Herald, who sings the first line of Act 3, did the same), that the director had responded to the fact that the audience found it inappropriately amusing, and excised it - both characters just walked on from the side.  But I was told later by a chorus member that this was because of a technical problem and nothing in the production had changed!  And sure enough, when I returned on second night, it was back in.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes, was completely puzzled why Desdemona was coming up from the bowels of the earth!  Also, The White Company bed was a tad odd but otherwise it was wonderful.  I was blown away and in seventh heaven.  JK has less of a stage presence than I'd expected but he was totally believable and I loved the sets, the lighting and everything - with the exception of the tray of glasses that fell over with a tremendous crash in one of the right-hand boxes at the beginning of Act 3.  I hadn't realised that people could take drinks in but my goodness did they get some dirty looks!

 

Another fantastic night at ROH. My cup has truly overflowed this year.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...