Feb 12, 2008


Of course people can argue all they want about the recent production of Gluck's Orphée et Eurydice by the Alagna brothers.
Both in Bologna and in Montpellier, the staging was a key issue. Too modern, too provocative, too Eurotrash (I've never actually read that word on the several papers/forums I've been through but it seems to be appropriate).
It doesn't strike me as awful (pictures here) and as a matter of fact, I'm rather intrigued.

The other thing people went nuts about in Bologna was Roberto Alagna's singing. I've heard the broadcast of one perfomance there and it was indeed dreadful.
And I was having second thoughts about that ticket I bought for this summer's Faust in Orange (with Alagna).

A few weeks passed.
And came the Montpellier performances. This time, everybody praised him for his singing.
Jean-Louis Validire for Le Figaro had empathic words about his diction and his energy. Even these guys, who make a habit of trashing everything, were almost kind to him (not to each others though).

This is just why Roberto Alagna bothers me so much.
He is so unreliable.

YouTube extracts:

- interview (in italian, Roberto first then brother David) and extract of "J'ai perdu mon Eurydice" from Bologna (Rai Tre)


mostly opera... said...

Regarding your Orange Festival ticket: Agreed on Alagna. On the other hand René Pape is a fabulous Mephistopheles - at least judging from the Faust broadcast from the MET in 2005 I just listened to. I am still considering going...

Extatic said...

I've also listened to this MET broadcast. Several times, actually (after all, I love this opera).
I must admit I'm not as impressed as some René Pape fanatics. I don't find his lower notes very powerful (key issue for me with a bass).
Therefore there's something missing from his character. Of course this is just based on a broadcast, I will be able to form a decent opinion only after seeing him...

mostly opera... said...

Agreed, if you prefer basses with the true "profondo" deep notes, he does not have them and never will have. It´s just not the sort of voice he has.