Sunday, 12 June 2016

My OperaDuets Travel in May: Wiesbaden and Forza

Finally I was going to see Jose Cura live as Don Alvaro in La Forza del Destino. But no, it was not to be because Cura had to cancel his whole May schedule in 2016. Why? We don't know why but we was know it was in ny way because of the opera production in Wiesbaden. So I decided if I don't get Cura in Wiesbaden then I wanted to check out my new tenor Francesco Meli in Vienna as Gabriele Adorno in Simon Boccanegra.

At this late time to buy my plane tickets because of my operation in early May I found out that with or without flight from Frankfurt to Vienna was almost the same in NOK, only 100 NOK in difference. And the train would force me up even earlier and with very little time to get to the opera house in Vienna. So Oslo - Frankfurt - Vienna - Oslo.

Night bus to Oslo Gardermoen. Arriving OSL 0500 in the morning of Thursday 26th of May. My flight was not a direct one to Frankfurt but went via Munich Airport. It started in OSL 0740 and landed 0950 as scheduled, but my flight for Frankfurt was canceled and the next was delayed and delayed. Had I known that I had so much time I would have found more to eat and not stressed so much. Almost 4 hours waiting in Munich. No fun, always a bit more to wait. Then 1320 finally off to Frankfurt. 1420 in Frankfurt and soon off (after 1 hour resting and eating) to Frankfurt with S-Bahn.

It was just a bit more than 30 minutes until I arrived in Frankfurt and then I went to my wonderful hotel, Radisson Blu Schwarzer Bock. Check in at 1600 and resting. I was pretty exhausted when I arrived the hotel. It was so hot and I was so weak. Relaxing as long as possible at the hotel and then walked to the restaurant near the Hessisches Staatstheater Wiesbaden. I bought the Pizza Margherita and then I went to the opera house and got my ticket and the opera started at 1930. I had a great seat but great singing could not save a terrible production. I don't understand how Jose Cura accept this production.

2016-05-26 La Forza del Destino (Verdi), Hessisches Staatstheater Wiesbaden

Der Marchese von Calatrava, Pater Guardiano = Young Doo Park
Donna Leonora = Hui He
Don Carlos di Vargas = Carlos Alvarez
Don Alvaro = Richard Furman
Fra Melitone = Patrick Carfizzi
Curra, Preziosilla = Romina Boscolo
Mastro Trabuco = Benedikt Nawrath

Christoph Stiller, conductor
Chor, Extrachor & Statisterie des Hessischen Staatstheaters Wiesbaden, Hessisches Staatsorchester Wiesbaden

Inszenierung nach Immo Karaman
Spielleitung Magdalena Weingut
Bühne Timo Dentler
Kostüme Okarina Peter
Licht Andreas Frank
Choregrafie nach Fabian Poska
Chor Albert Horne
Dramaturgie Stephan Steinmetz

If only Jose Cura had been Don Alvaro...

Now, we had second tenor Richard Furman as Don Alvaro. And that meant we had a weak link. Hui He was a strong, vibrant Leonora and with an equally excellent Don Carlo in Carlos Alvarez. The rest of the cast was also strong singers. Richard Furman acted well but his voice was sweeter and softer than the rest so his Don Alvaro was lost in this Forza del Destino.

I enjoyed very much this Fra Melitone, Patrick Carfizzi. Here was a strong singer and great actor and his role in this production was most believable. Unfortunately this production was bad, good and bad ideas were flouting around making little sense. Some scenes had some sense but in the end the whole structure was lacking. So: Production rubbish but Patrick Carfizzi as Fra Melitone was great. Fra Melitone was an idea that worked and often Fra Melitone is just stupid, here he made sense.

I guess that making the singer singing Marchese di Calatrava into Padre Superior was supposed to make an profound effect to the story and that was not really realized in the production. The same was true about making Curra = Preziosilla was a bit better but still in the end made no sense.

Putting La Forza del Destino in our times, or rather World War 2, was also damaging to the whole opera. Without Hui He and Carlos Alvarez or singers in that calible as Alvaro, Leonora and Carlo there is no need to put yourself into this production. The poignant end is no longer poignant!!!

OD Travel & Photos

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