|Women's chorus with Mary (Young Artist Deborah Nansteel)|
Photo by Karli Cadel for Glimmerglass
The first show I saw was Der Fliegende Holländer, Mr. Wagner's great opus in honor of seamen. Ghostly ship's captain comes ashore once every seven years searching for true love, and one gathers that it never ends well. Glimmerglass always has innovative and creative new productions of both standard and unusual works, and Francesca Zambello, Artistic Director of Glimmerglass and stage director of this show, certainly did not let us down! This was a visually stunning show, with spellbinding effects in scenery, stage direction, choreography, and lighting. (My companion opined that the enormously effective lighting was like another character, but in a successful way, not in a Lepage-machine way.) Sets by James Noone and lighting by Mark McCullough deserve high praise, as do Ms. Zambello's lusty direction and choreography by Eric Sean Fogel. In fact, there was almost nothing to complain about in this show.
Photo by Karli Cadel
Photo by Karli Cadel
Jay Hunter Morris sang Erik, Senta's local sweetheart. Mr. Morris gained well-deserved fame when he stepped in on short notice as Siegfried in the Met's Ring cycle last season. Although I didn't see those performances, I heard very good sounding clips from them. Which is why I was concerned that he sounded tired in this performance. He did not act tired, however, and threw himself into the role as the hot-headed young Jägerman Erik. A spy assures me he was in better voice for opening night, and I look forward to hearing Mr. Morris in the future sounding fresh and well rested.
Peter Volpe was a tenderly paternal Daland, Senta's father. The Steersman was performed with lusty if oversung ardor by Young Artist Adam Bielamowicz, and Mary was sung quite well by Young Artist Deborah Nansteel. The chorus of Young Artists was very, very good, and the dancers superb. Once again I must rave about choreographer Eric Sean Fogel. The sailors' dance at the beginning of Act III was quite a delight to see in its enthusiastic and uniform execution, and the movements of the women's chorus and dancers in Act II was similarly beautiful.
A musical, vocal, visual, dramatic success. What's not to love about this production?
|Photo by Jamie Kraus for Glimmerglass|
I had thought the beautiful and amazing Melody More was a new name and face to me, but now I realize I saw her in New York City Opera's Seance on a Wet Afternoon.