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Puccini: La Boheme
Live performance of Puccini's opera at the Salzburg Festival in Austria. Piotr Beczala stars as Rodolfo with Anna Netrebko as Mimi, Massimo Cavalletti as Marcello and Nino Machaidze as Musetta. Daniele Gatti conducts the Vienna Philharmonic, the Vienna State Opera Chorus and the Salzburg Festival and Theatre Children's Choir.
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Instead of the garret, at the turn of the 19th century, we open on a street scene, where they are living under a highway overpass, in what appears to be the early 2000s. Marcello is a photographer (not a painter) and the Rodolfo is pushing a supermarket shopping cart, while digging through the trash, for bottles and cans, to be able to recover the deposit values.
I bougth this, just on the cast list. My grievous error.
Don’t waste your money, unless you enjoy Euro-trash.
I had to watch this, a second time, to see if I could get through more than just the first few minutes. I did get through it, fast forwarding much of it.
Revisionist, Euro-trash is better than this.
Supermarket shopping carts seem to loom, large, in this presentation. Many of the characters use them, for whatever purpose happens to exist, at the moment.
Those familiar with this opera know that Mimi makes her appearance, at the door of Rodolfo, to have her candle relit, since it’s allegedly been blown out, by a draft, in her apartment. In this version, Mimi comes to Rodolfo’s door to relight......wait for it......her cigarette!!! She makes her entarnce, in full Goth gear: jet-black hair, cut, sharply, black eye liner, black makeup, black, leather jacket, miniskirt, ankle-length, black, high-heeled boots and multiple body tatoos.
The whole presentation goes downhill, from there. I don’t know if the cause of this was the direction they received or if their voices were just not there, that day. No one, especially Netrebko, was even close to excellent. Overall, I would give the quality of singing a B+, at best.
Much of the time, what you see, as scenery (and I’m using that word VERY loosely) has nothing to do with the opera or even what’s allegedly taking place, on stage.
Don’t waste your money, unless you enjoy something which makes even Euro-trash look good.