LA TRAVIATA on March 22. I loved it. The day after I saw Donizetti's LA FAVORITE with Vesselina Kasarova as Leonor de Guzman. And then there were two performances of Verdi's STIFFELIO (March 24, 26) both with José Cura as Stiffelio.
In late April it was Jenufa with Agnes Baltsa and Turandot with José Cura. Jenufa was in Vienna, Turandot in Zürich. Both great performances that I am grateful for.
In June I traveled to Hungary for the Miskolc Opera Festival. I saw Cav/Pag on June 24. On June 25th came the event for me Verismo Gala with Agnes Baltsa, Paolo Gavanello, Miro Dvorsky and Natasa Katai. Loved it, I even was at the after-concert party. I saw Eva Marton in Miskolc. Then it was time to travel to Vienna for Werther with Marcus Haddock as Werther on June 26. It was OK. With Marcelo Alvarez it would have been better but I have the DVD so I am OK. I was lucky to get a ticket for Italiana in Algeri with Agnes Baltsa who replace Olga Borodina. When I heard that Agnes Baltsa was going to sing I got the ticket as fast as possible and rearranged my travel plans for June.
July was also great. This time Cav/Pag with José Cura as Turriddu and Canio in Arena di Verona on July 14. On July 15 it was Tosca with Marcelo Alvarez, Fiorenza Cedolins and Ruggero Raimondi. Superb! And it is on DVD. Lovely!
September meant that José Cura was Dick Johnson in Puccini's LA FANCIULLA DEL WEST. And I saw it on September 24. It was not my favorite production but not he worst. The day before we celebrated 10 years of Jose Cura Connexion. Cura was there. I sat on the same table as he did. I only wished I had been a member from the beginning.
On October 20th I saw Samson et Dalila in Bergen, Norway. It was interesting...
On November 25th I saw Don Carlo with José Cura in Zurich. Loved it, naturally.
Then it was finally December. Agnes Baltsa sang an Opera Concert in Munich on December 15th, then it was Werther with Marcelo Alvarez on December 16th (also in Munich), DON CARLO in Vienna with José Cura on December 18th, and on December 19th Opera Concert with Agnes Baltsa in Vienna. What can I say? Was it my best opera year, or what?
I am speechless. Two wonderful performances of STIFFELIO and two different productions of DON CARLO in two different cities. Two wonderful concerts with Agnes Baltsa, she was wonderful as Küsterin in Jenufa and Isabella in L'Italiana d'Algeri. Cura was great as Alfredo Germont, Stiffelio, Calaf, Turriddu, Canio and Don Carlo. I saw Marcelo Alvarez as Mario Cavaradossi and Werther, his best roles.
For more reviews from my travels, see www.operaduetstravel.com