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<<  -- 3 --  Maria Nockin    LIVELY PACING


The most difficult role to fill for this opera is that of Lady Macbeth because she needs to sing a considerable amount of dramatic coloratura as well as the eerie Sleepwalking Scene. Brenda Harris had all the qualifications necessary, including a substantial trill that she could hold for as long as required. She sang with floods of tone and acted with dramatic flair.

Chinese tenor, Jianyi Zhang, was a lyrical Macduff with an appealing stage presence, while bass, Peter Volpe, was a sonorous, robust Banquo. As the Lady-in-Waiting, Kara Harris was a laudable comprimario singer, while James Flora was an energetic Malcolm and Andrew Gray an authoritative Doctor.

The Apparition Scene. Photo © 2006 Tim Fuller
The Apparition Scene. Photo © 2006 Tim Fuller

Chorus Director Julian Reed succeeded in having his singers energize their words with conviction as they sang with opulent tones. The force that lifted this whole performance well above the ordinary was the conducting of the company's General and Artistic Director, Joel Revzen. He shaped the orchestral sound with lively pacing, beautifully played phrases and an attention to detail that revealed the soul of the work. Although the visual aspects of this production were minimal, people come to the opera for the music, and the Phoenix audience went home happy that they had heard a fine rendition of the score.

Brenda Harris in Lady Macbeth's mad scene. Photo © 2006 Tim Fuller
Brenda Harris in Lady Macbeth's mad scene. Photo © 2006 Tim Fuller


Copyright © 21 October 2006 Maria Nockin, Arizona USA





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Classical Music Programme Notes for concerts and recordings, by Malcolm Miller