"Opera experiences" Personal Page by german_eagle
Intermission at the Semper Opera house - time for people watching in the splendid lobby. Performance that night was DON CARLO (Verdi), a crappy production, but with excellent soloists, chorus and orchestra.
One of the highlights in my entire life as an opera lover was the premiere of RIGOLETTO (Verdi) with Zeljko Lucic, Diana Damrau and Juan Diego Florez, three of the top stars of the opera currently. The production was very good, too, the other soloists were excellent as well and the orchestra + chorus were good as usual.
From left: Fabio Luisi (conductor), Georg Zeppenfeld (Sparafucile), Juan Diego Florez (Duke of Mantua), Nikolaus Lehnhoff (director), Diana Damrau (Gilda), Zeljko Lucic (Rigoletto), Christa Mayer (Maddalena)
THE BARBER OF SEVILLE was another nice production I enjoyed at the Semper Opera - beautiful staging/costumes, excellent soloists.
Some of the best singing I have ever heard live was by Edita Gruberova - I had the pleasure to hear her at the Semper Opera twice. In 2008 right on my birthday she appeared for LUCIA DI LAMMERMOOR. I bet the madness scene cannot be done any better than by her that night.
Very appropriate for New Year's Eve I attended a performance of FLEDERMAUS (The Bat) some years ago with my parents (before the ticket prices started rising outrageously for this special night). It was fabulous. Funny production, nothing for the prudes :-)
On 24 June 2009 I attended OTELLO at the Semperoper. Wonderful music, crappy production. Ok, I have seen worse productions. But there's a background action going on that totally distracts from the main action.
Anyway, the cast was in parts spectacular. Farnocchia (Desdemona), Gavanelli (Jago) and Kim (Cassio) were sensational. Especially the first two received huge ovations and bravi. I almost forgot to breathe when Desdemona had her aria in Act 4 (?). Lotric (Otello) was not very good, but he didn't ruin the evening either. The chorus was great as usual, the conductor (Zanetti), however, was a bit lame - no inspiration. But the singular instruments, horns and the celli e.g., were superb again.
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