There was a very special singer for Léonore on Saturday night, in the person of Clémentine Margaine. A young French mezzo on the rise, this Léonore impressed with her sound, her commitment to the character and the text, and her beautiful yellow dress in the first half. (Her tasteful black and white number in the second half was also very nice.) Léonore's aria "O mon Fernand" ("O mio Fernando") left one breathless. Ms. Margaine's bio lists an impressive string of venues for her Carmen--Berlin, Munich, Montreal, and Dallas, as well as future engagements in Paris, at the Chicago Lyric, and at the Metropolitan Opera.
Baritone Stephen Powell impressed us at Caramoor in 2013 with his Rodrigue in Don Carlos, and impressed us again with his highly skilled singing and committed interpretation of Alphonse, the king with whom Léonore has been on friendly terms. Bass-baritone Daniel Mobbs was the reliable, resonant, musically sensitive singer we've come to know and love as Balthazar, the Prior of Fernand's monastery.
Caramoor Bel Canto Young artists SungWook Kim and Isabella Gaudi deserve mention for their sidekick roles, and the chorus comprised of Bel Canto Young Artists and apprentice artists also deserves praise. The Orchestra of St. Luke's, under Maestro Will Crutchfield, were also as reliable and musical as ever.
I am very sorry that Saturday night was the only performance of La Favorite. Were there a second performance, I'd happily recommend seeing it.