Can you believe I’d never seen Rigoletto? Opéra de Montréal premiered Michael Cavanagh-directed lavish production of this Verdi opera (I LOVED IT) and when i say lavish it’all about the hats and voices and extreme sets. Michael (we met him and chatted) also gave an intimacy to various relationships, very rare in grand opera, it was striking.
Giancarlo’s teacher, Claude Webster’s male chorus pieces and the ominous, Wizard of Oz-type ooo ahhh wind chorus for the storm were so incredible (i did not know Verdi invented that!). Myriam LeBlanc as Gilda had the voice and most of the time, the correct placement that sent chills up my spine and made MY face ring with resonance (sitting in the 6th row). Tenor was fabulous!
AND Vartan Gabriellian as Sparafucile, the tall dark and handsome if not a little scary, hired assassin with a booming voice, made his professional debut. He is also playing Sweeney in his university’s production (Curtis School of Music in Philly) and i know this because he just happened to be fixing his jeep behind my car making quite the mess on the street and i asked him to move it as i was late to a rehearsal. He asked what rehearsal. I said Sweeney Todd and he said he was doing it too, and i thought “Giancarlo doesn’t need me to start rehearsal, right?!” lol. We talked about LOOM, he asked if we did serious opera. I said you do Aaron Copland’s Tender Land, and then call me and ask me that question again lol. Very nice guy and very excited about his debut. Thanks to Graeme and Marcel for the ticket. We might have to pop down to Philly and see Sweeney in November.