January 20, 2022

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Evaluate: ‘Magic Flute’ Welcomes Kids Again to the Met

Review: ‘Magic Flute’ Welcomes Children Back to the Met

It’s at all times heartening to see a lot of keen kids within the viewers when the Metropolitan Opera presents its family-friendly model of Mozart’s “The Magic Flute” throughout the holidays.

However when the corporate reopened in September, their return was unsure. The Met, which for the reason that begin of its season has required all who enter to be vaccinated, de facto banned kids beneath 12, who weren’t eligible for vaccines.

When eligibility expanded on the finish of October, although, the door was open for youths to come back again. They usually did on Friday, to Julie Taymor’s fantastical manufacturing — trimmed to only beneath two intermissionless hours and carried out in J.D. McClatchy’s snappy English adaptation.

The efficiency boasted a profitable forged and glowing taking part in from the orchestra, led with class and perception by Jane Glover. I’ve lengthy been within the minority find Taymor’s stylized, puppet-filled staging overly busy — too ingenious for its personal good. However the viewers applauded every scenic contact and stage trick, together with some kids close to me, although there appeared not that a lot of them in attendance general. (The corporate can be providing an abridged, English-language model of Massenet’s “Cinderella,” which opens on Friday.)

From the melting love aria that Prince Tamino sings early on, the tenor Matthew Polenzani — who sang the position at this staging’s premiere in 2004 — was in heat, ardent voice. When the questing Tamino exchanges questions with the Speaker (the strong bass-baritone Patrick Carfizzi), who oversees the doorway to a temple of knowledge, Polenzani’s heated earnestness lent the scene darkish depth. And his English diction was a mannequin of readability.

Pamina, with whom Tamino falls in love, was sung superbly by the plush-voiced soprano Hera Hyesang Park. Pamina’s mom, the Queen of the Night time, was the soprano Kathryn Lewek, who dispatched her florid leaps and super-high notes with fearless brilliance. The highly effective bass Morris Robinson made an imposing but reliable Sarastro, the religious chief of the temple.

In a daring transfer, the tenor Rolando Villazón sang Papageno, the hapless chook catcher — historically a baritone position. In a recent interview with The New York Times, Villazón, a star for the reason that early 2000s, was candid concerning the vocal troubles and psychological setbacks that just about led him to retire lately. He mentioned within the interview that he believed his voice was mended. However on Friday, his low vary was weak and patchy, and even his greater notes had bother carrying in the home.

Nonetheless, he sang actually and energetically, and introduced an enthralling mix of comedic antics and wistful craving to his portrayal of this bumptious character who yearns for love — and finds it, finally, with Papagena, right here the sunny soprano Ashley Emerson.

On the rostrum, Glover balanced heat and brightness, breadth and excessive spirits, and rightly obtained an enthusiastic ovation. When she made her Met debut in 2013 on this vacation “Magic Flute,” she was simply the third woman to conduct at the company. This present run is her first time again.

Glover has labored with the Royal Opera and the Glyndebourne Pageant in England, the Berlin State Opera, the Royal Danish Opera and different main homes. Isn’t it time for the Met to make the most of her full capabilities?

The Magic Flute

By way of Jan. 5 on the Metropolitan Opera, Manhattan; metopera.org.

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