Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Sonnambula and Firebrand Messages

Was just watching a bit of the horribly staged version of La Sonnambula. Thank goodness for Juan Diego Florez and Natalie Dessay, because without their singing, the production would be unwatchable. So as I was watching with this dippy smile on my face whenever JDF sang, I was reminded that one of my friends is out tonight seeing the encore/reshowing or whatever of Barbiere in HD. So I sent her a text message asking if she loves it, because seriously how can she not, with that cast? And there on the screen were all the previous text messages we've exchanged - one during intermission at Lucretia, then a whole bunch before, during intermission and exactly one after Firebrand. Only 1 after because if you recall from my post about it, I was first on the phone with Banawoman and then I called my texting friend.

Let me back up for a moment. Watching La Sonnambula tonight reminded me of how much fun I had going to see the opera with my voice teacher - walking around, having dinner, loving and hating the opera and so on. She was, of course, blown away by JDF. Which reminds me - she still has some of my CDs! But anyway it was nice to remember all that because having Firebrand the very next day put my brain into overload, and knocked some of the fabulousness of the previous day down unnecessarily. Make sense? Yeah, not to me either.

And then yeah, Firebrand the next night - I mean, come ON - Juan Diego Florez one day , Nathan Gunn the next. And backstage. And those text messages with my friend - such an interesting progression of anticipation, reporting and then summarizing in as few words as possible.

Good thing there wasn't a third event that week or my brain would have oozed out my ears. But think how good I would have gotten at text messaging?


Maria said...

I loved, loved, loved Barbiere! I've told you before that JDF's shoulder shrugging for air during Sonnombula really jerked me out of the "story" (if you could call it that for that production) and although beautifully voiced, I didn't like that. Well, this was GREAT. JDF was awesome, your bff Joyce DiDonato was so beautiful as well as good and both Peter Mattei and John Del Carlo were so comic and sang so well. Later while watching, I tried to imagine NG as Figaro, and honestly I think he might have detracted from the production. I think his looks would have been a distraction for me, so I'm glad I got to see this production without him, believe it or not. All in all a great time.

Susan said...

I'm so glad you loved, loved, loved it!!

Having seen NG in this opera, although not this production, I can tell you that for the most part his acting skills reign supreme over any distraction his pretty face might cause. The exception, of course, was when he was prancing about in his skivvies. His duet with JDD as Rosina was exceptional. There's a slide show video of it on YouTube, take a listen when you get a chance.

Maria said...

One of my favorite moments in that screwed up Sonnombula was when all the paper was flying at the break for intermission, and when JDF and ND were singing on the revolving bed. Other than that...well, you know.

Susan said...

I didn't see the intermission break because I didn't see it in the movies. But the actual paper shredding scene was so distracting to me. They were singing this beautiful duet, meanwhile everyone else was throwing paper and pillows around. What were they thinking???????

tcarstetter said...

Zimmerman should not have taken guidence from Dessay, while the soprano is am amazing actress, she lacks sensibilty in directing.Like Nathan Gunn, "you can't be the wealthiest person in the world", meaning we are given a talent for something and not other things.