mardi 16 mars 2010

Note for Swiss Wagnerians

I was yesterday at the Dress Rehearsal of Parsifal at the Grand Theatre. The production is classic, beautiful to look (especially in the Flower Maiden scne at act 2) at while being a little short of PersonenRegie.Singing is fairly homogeneous. Dohmen is a much better Gurnemanz than Amfortas at Easter under Abbado, his personal severity being on line with the character, words so clear and notes so solid. I was less impressed by the Kundry of L Braun and the Amfortas of D Roth, both competent singers but somewhat pale and lacking tension. To be fair with them, this is a rehearsal and they could have been marking. Klaus Florian Vogt deserves a few lines: he signs with a disarming naturalness and basically never forces. This works wonderfully until the Act 2 Kundry kiss where he needs to rise and ... become Parsifal. Maybe because this is a dress rehearsal but I was missing sheer drama there. But the voice is something to marvel at.

What was a discovery was the excellence of the conducting of John Fiore. Long-lined legato with a keen sense of characterisation. This is a natural Wagnerian relishing every note of the work. The OSR played well for him with more colour from the strings than usual.

Approved by Beckmesser. Definitely not to be missed.

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