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Thread: At Home with the Met

  1. #106
    Senior Member DavidA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Byron View Post
    Precisely. That's all its going for.
    What’s wrong with that? It was very well done. And very funny

  2. #107
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidA View Post
    What’s wrong with that? It was very well done. And very funny
    Oh, its ultimately pretty harmless granted. It just adds nothing to the opera except unnecessary discord between visuals, music and story. Boito and Verdi didn't write an opera an about a guy in the middle of the 20th century smoking cigarettes and typing away at a typewriter.

  3. #108
    Senior Member DavidA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Byron View Post
    Oh, its ultimately pretty harmless granted. It just adds nothing to the opera except unnecessary discord between visuals, music and story. Boito and Verdi didn't write an opera an about a guy in the middle of the 20th century smoking cigarettes and typing away at a typewriter.
    I can’t remember there being a typewriter in it? And I can’t remember anyone smoking?

  4. #109
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidA View Post
    Just a fresh look to me. Set in reign of Elizabeth 2 instead of Elizabeth 1. It was joyous.
    It's not set in the reign of Elizabeth 1! The original setting is the reign of Henry IV or V. (Of course, Shakespeare's play would have been staged in contemporary dress as was customary at the time and so I can see where the idea that it is set in the Elizabethan period comes from.) Now you may say I am taking all this 'too seriously', but how can people complain about an opera being set at a time other than that which the composer wanted when they are ignorant of the composer's original setting?

    Verdi set the opera during "The reign of Henry IV, 1399 to 1413" and that is why the previous ROH production had a medieval slant to the style (See the image of Bryn on the DVD cover in my post up thread). Like you I have no problem with the opera being updated to either the Elizabethan era or the 50s.

    N.

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  6. #110
    Senior Member DavidA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Conte View Post
    It's not set in the reign of Elizabeth 1! The original setting is the reign of Henry IV or V. (Of course, Shakespeare's play would have been staged in contemporary dress as was customary at the time and so I can see where the idea that it is set in the Elizabethan period comes from.) Now you may say I am taking all this 'too seriously', but how can people complain about an opera being set at a time other than that which the composer wanted when they are ignorant of the composer's original setting?

    Verdi set the opera during "The reign of Henry IV, 1399 to 1413" and that is why the previous ROH production had a medieval slant to the style (See the image of Bryn on the DVD cover in my post up thread). Like you I have no problem with the opera being updated to either the Elizabethan era or the 50s.

    N.
    Yes I stand corrected. Of course Falstaff was a main character in Henry IV. The play, ‘Marry Wives of Windsor’ was alkedgly written by Shakespeare on the suggestion of Elizabeth I who wanted to see St John in love.

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  8. #111
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidA View Post
    I can’t remember there being a typewriter in it? And I can’t remember anyone smoking?
    There was another recent production of the opera that also set it in the 1950s. It's a very trendy idea. See the recent Met Cosi fan tutte. But the operas weren't written to reflect life in the 1950s, and it leads to all sorts of pointless inconsistencies and incongruities.

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  10. #112
    Senior Member DavidA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Byron View Post
    There was another recent production of the opera that also set it in the 1950s. It's a very trendy idea. See the recent Met Cosi fan tutte. But the operas weren't written to reflect life in the 1950s, and it leads to all sorts of pointless inconsistencies and incongruities.
    Yes that one is coming up this week. I did see it but unfortunately there was problems with the transmission to the cinema. Of course there are inconsistencies and incongruities but it was quite fun. In any case the biggest incongruity lies in the plot! Just happens to be surrounded by some of the greatest opera music ever written

  11. #113
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    Am I the only one to see this stupendous Parsifal with Pape, Mattei, Dalayman, Kaufmann et al. What a tour de force.
    I saw the original in-house and am so glad to have been able to see it again as I always miss something important the first time.
    Bravo Wagner!

  12. #114
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    I also saw it in the house. I have the Blu ray, so I may watch that if I can't get any of the other streaming options to work.

    I have not had any luck streaming anything from Wiener Staatsoper, or I would try there. My next attempt will be the one from Opera Vlaanderen.

  13. #115
    Senior Member Helgi's Avatar
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    There's also a Parsifal from Bayerische Staatsoper available to stream, with Jonas Kaufmann, René Pape and Nina Stemme: https://operlive.de/parsifal/

  14. #116
    Senior Member Woodduck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nina foresti View Post
    Am I the only one to see this stupendous Parsifal with Pape, Mattei, Dalayman, Kaufmann et al. What a tour de force.
    I saw the original in-house and am so glad to have been able to see it again as I always miss something important the first time.
    Bravo Wagner!
    See post #98. ................

  15. #117
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    Woodduck: Yes I just got finished reading it and I found myself nodding my head more than once in agreement by your very fine assessment. It was particularly well done despite the unnecessary updating -- and I can also forgive those stupid 2nd act machinations.
    In all, that last act left me like a blubbering idiot.

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  17. #118
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    This is of course the production that gave rise to my avatar (the Parsifal banner outside the Met) on what I can only describe as a weekend trip to NYC that was magic. In the span of 3 days I saw Parsifal, Don Carlo, the Vienna Philharmonic, and a jazz concert at Birdland. Also spent about 12 hours in museums. It was the trip of a lifetime.

    So I can't give a critique, as such, because I have so much emotionally invested in this memory - how many do we get like that in a lifetime? - suffice it to say that I agree with Woodduck's post and (refreshing my recollection) with the NYT Anthony Thomasini review, which shares many of the same concerns.

    What stays with me the most was the staggering performance of Peter Mattei. I enjoyed it more on this broadcast because I could see the up-close integration of the acting with his singing, a true artist (and showing that a Mozartian can sing this). Kaufman was excellent, and so was Pape, although I thought he sounded less dry in person.

    From where I sit today, working on the virus response but helpless against it, this performance seems a lifetime ago.
    I'll call you Doctor if you call me Admiral

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  19. #119
    Senior Member Helgi's Avatar
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    Peter Mattei seems to be good at everything.

    I prefer the more straightforward production of the München Parsifal, but this one is rather magical — once you get acclimated to it. The scorched-earth scenery and modern business attire etc.

    A slightly younger Jonas Kaufmann is also a plus!

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  21. #120
    Senior Member Woodduck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Helgi View Post
    There's also a Parsifal from Bayerische Staatsoper available to stream, with Jonas Kaufmann, René Pape and Nina Stemme: https://operlive.de/parsifal/
    This is worth looking in on. I put it that way because your decision as to whether to watch it entire may depend on your tolerance for ugliness. Ugliness is something the Germans specialize in; they've been practicing since the age of Expressionism and Bauhaus, and they really have it down pat. Not being masochistic by nature, I skipped around, but the one part I found absolutely riveting was the Kundry-Parsifal scene in Act 2. This is certainly one of the most difficult scenes in opera to bring off; it's all there in the music, but the actors have their work cut out for them. Nina Stemme and Jonas Kaufmann are fantastic, and Kaufmann surpasses in vocal strength and expressive variety even his Met performances of several years earlier. If this is a preview of his Tristan, we may be in very good hands (as long as the now wobbly Stemme isn't his Isolde).

    Start at Kundry's entrance at 2:05:00, and try to ignore the "flower maidens"; they'll be gone momentarily.

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