Monday, 22 November 2010
2010-11-20 La Fanciulla del West in Zurich
Dick Johnson (Ramirez) = José Cura
Minnie = Emily Magee
Jack Rance = Ruggero Raimondi
Harry = Shinya Kitajma
Jake Wallace = Davide Fersini
Nick = Martin Zysset
Ashby = Daniel Henriks
Sonora = Cheyne Davidson
Sid = Tomasz Slawinsky
Trin = Pablo Ricardo Bemsch
Bello = Kresimir Strazanac
Joe = Boguslaw Bidzinski
Happy = Thomas Tatzl
José Castro = Valeriy Murga
Larkens = Aaron Agulay
Billy Jackrabbit = Thomas Forde
Wowkle = Bettina Schneebeli
Un Postilione = Simon Wallfisch
Massimo Zanetti, conductor
This David Pountney production of La Fanciulla del West by Giacomo Puccini is growing old and is no longer inspiring. Once upon a time the use of movie was innovating like in 2004 when I first saw this production I found it pure genius. But the times has changed and it is after all my 10th Fanciulla.
It is nothing new here. The Girl of the Golden West (LA FANCIULLA DEL WEST) is the Spaghetti Western as opera. Was it necessary to make the stage so steep and did the screen really have to be hung in a slope. It just seemed so sloppy. Every time the movie was playing or the backdrop was changed to another photo reminding us about the time of gold digging in California it was like the director took the audience as utter fools. It is the usual story of opera directors not daring to let the opera speak for it self.
When I compare to the other Fanciulla productions that I have seen at Royal Opera House (London), Deutsche Oper Berlin, Den Norske Opera (Oslo) then Opernhaus Zürich production seem to be the oldest and dullest one.
The cast was incredible. Still I was bored and not really tuned into the action. I just know that Emily Magee was the perfect Minnie and José Cura was perfect as Dick Johnson. Ruggero Raimondi was also great. But the production let this opera down.
For more reviews from my travels, see www.operaduetstravel.com