<< -- 2 -- Maria Nockin EXPANSIVE ROMANTICISM
Finally, on 17 February 1904, Madama Butterfly had its first performance at La Scala in Milan. Sadly, its reception was not good because of a disturbance which was probably organized by Sanzogno, a rival of Puccini's publisher, Ricordi. The composer withdrew the work and completely revised it before its second première on 28 May 1904 at the Teatro Grande in Brescia. There, the new opera was a tremendous success and the composer was called out for ten bows.
The female chorus in Teatro Lirico D'Europa's production of 'Madama Butterfly'. Photo © 2006 Robin Grant
On 3 November 2006, Teatro Lirico D'Europa presented Madama Butterfly at Long Island University's Tilles Center, a modern auditorium in Nassau County. The title character was portrayed by Russian soprano Elena Razgylyaeva as a docile bride who gives up her native customs and family relationships in order to marry the American naval officer. As Pinkerton, Gabriel Gonzalez was a suave and romantic lover who told his bride what she most wanted to hear as he sang with warm golden tones. Their voices blended beautifully in the enchanting love duet that ends Act I.
Happy lovers - Gabriel Gonzalez as Pinkerton and Elena Razgylyaeva as Butterfy. Photo © 2006 Robin Grant
Robust voiced Lithuanian baritone Vytautas Juozapaitis was a spirited but easy going Sharpless who tried to avert the tragedy from the beginning. Viara Zhelezova's Suzuki was never deceived by Pinkerton. She did not trust him from the beginning, nor did she expect him to return. Nevertheless, she supported Butterfly's blind faith. Although she had no aria, the mezzo-soprano gave a well thought out portrayal of this down to earth servant.
Copyright © 19 November 2006
Maria Nockin, Arizona USA