Normally I would share Jessica Norrie’s post on Fridays but yesterday went at warp speed on certain projects. However, this is worth waiting for as Jessica deconstructs the performance of Otello at Covent Garden that she recently attended. She examines some of the concepts behind the story, the various good and less attractive set designs over the years and the fact that it is rare to find ethnically appropriate lead actors. Also Jessica feels that the original play and subsequent operas should be renamed for the real lead in the plot.. Desdemona…. head over and read the post to discover why…#recommended
Last month Jonas Kaufmann singing Verdi’s Otello was one of the hottest tickets in town and it may be only because I’m a blasé Londoner that I thought, ho humph, that was quite a good evening.
The soloists and chorus sang wonderfully of course. Resonant, mostly expressive, bang in the middle of the note except for Iago for whose anger a slightly strangled air works well. I can’t afford seats close enough to judge their facial expressions or more nuanced gestures. But most of the singers looked and behaved appropriately most of the time.
The orchestra played as robustly as ever. Every time I’ve seen Pappano conduct the singers must fight him to be heard, from the (relatively) cheap seats anyway. (I mistyped signers, which could have stood). But the musicians did pipe down respectfully for the likes of Kaufmann and they always quieten after the interval. As a choral singer…
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