This was a real treat. Glorious singing and very accessible selection of music and arias obviously
geared to the unsophisticated ear. Nice balance of orchestra alone, each singer, and duets. I love Joseph Calleja's voice which blended nicely with Renee Fleming's still gorgeous vocal skills. His acting was not in her category and their chemistry was slightly distant despite her great efforts but since this was not an opera it wasn't a big deal. The production was well done and camera angles of the orchestra and Mehta were good but there were several short technical glitches in the sound. It was not clear whether the sound problems were in the original tape or the copy that was being played at the Regal Union Square theater. Sounded like feedback problems with the mikes. It was still wonderful to be able to enjoy this without having to travel more than a few blocks from home. Highly recommended.
I've seen this Met Opera Hi Def performance once before a few years ago with a different cast --
Ana Netrebko and Piotyr Beczala were the leads and while I enjoyed that version very much I liked this even better -- Natalie Dessay simply can't be beat for her vocal skills, interpretation, and vulnerability. While Beczala may have been a little more emotionally charged because he had stepped in for an highly anticipated tenor who could not perform, Joseph Calleja has a gorgeous and full out tenor voice with great vigor and range. The production was well done and captured on film and, as always, the intermission discussions were interesting and informative. Renee Fleming is always a knowledgeable and warm host and her repartee with the singers and production staff is ejnoyable. Any opera lover will enjoy this film as will, perhaps, someone who is just being introduced to opera. Lucia is one of the more accessible operas and Natalie Dessay is a great introduction.
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