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Tosca, Puccini
D: Mario Pontiggia
C: Daniel OrenLorenzo Passerini
Tosca in all its glory at Teatro Regio Torino

The production, directed by Mario Pontiggia with sets and costumes by Francesco Zito, originated at the Teatro Massimo in Palermo. It is a stunningly beautiful, richly detailed re-creation of the three locations in Rome where the tragedy unfolds. The dresses of the heavily veiled women who crowded the church and Tosca’s second act gown and sparkling jewels, complete with tiara, were the most sumptuous of the costumes. When Tosca’s shadow suddenly appeared on the wall as she placed candles and a crucifix over Scarpia’s body, the man sitting next to me shuddered. It is of such details that memorable operatic performances are made. I have heard Marcello Álvarez many times, but never experienced him performing with such carefree abandon. Sleeker these days, he emanated a youthful energy but, more importantly, he made the audience see Tosca through his eyes: passionate, jealous and alluring. His Cavaradossi was vocally and dramatically impetuous and daring; as to the former, he may be throwing caution to the wind, but the result is thrilling. Ambrogio Maestri’s Scarpia can only be described as massive in temperament, voice and person, yet there was a delicacy to his performance. His Scarpia was a connoisseur of cruelty and capable of expressing it in the most subtle of manners, unless more drastic measures were needed. Oren had missed the first four performances of the run due to health reasons, but he was in fine form for these two. His verismo is the stuff of raw meat being thrown to the lions at one end of the spectrum and champagne at the other. His broadest musical brush strokes, as well as his most sensitive shadings, came from the orchestra and chorus, who responded brilliantly to the frantic beating of his baton and grunts and shouts that could be heard throughout the house. All of Rome may have trembled before Scarpia, but Oren can make the earth move.

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10 October 2019seenandheard-international.comRick Perdian
La Bohème, Puccini
D: Graham Vick
C: Michele Mariotti
Come fa male la verità di questa «Bohème»

(...)sa cantare e anche molto bene: è una Mimì magnifica, che si concede perfino il lusso di dare un rilievo insolito, e d’ora in avanti indimenticabile, a certe frasi trascurate. Una per tutte: «Vorrei che eterno / durasse il verno!».

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27 January 2018www.lastampa.itAlberto Mattioli

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