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The opera is a marathon for Violetta from the scintillating roulades of her Act I soliloquy to the impassioned duets with Germond père et fils in Act II and the poignant arias of the final Act. Anya Szreter was fully up to the challenge and drew a ravishing range of tone colour, breathtaking sustained pianissimo and flowing legato. Her voice had considerable power -- particularly in the Act II party where Violetta's interjections shift the metre from two to three beats. The orchestra -- playing a reduced orchestration which emphasised brass -- supported with buoyant elegance, dynamically conducted by Christopher Tilbury, who highlighted the dramatic fiery tutti chords where required, suspense filled diminished sevenths that stir the adrenaline. In the Act II Bedroom scene the grandeur and pathos were marked, underlined by the set -- the high draped bed from where Violetta's initial aria gained compelling poignancy and the angelic sweetness of tone of her final farewell aria.

Anya Szreter as Violetta in the Ware Operatic Society 2002 'Traviata'. Photo: Geoff Bawcutt


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Copyright © 14 March 2002 Malcolm Miller, London, UK




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