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<<  -- 3 --  Maria Nockin    EXPANSIVE ROMANTICISM

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Razgylyaeva's voice assumed more dramatic qualities as the opera progressed and she brought tears to many an eye with her rendition of the opera's most famous aria, Un bel di. Pinkerton, of course, did not realize the harm he had done until he returned to Japan with his American wife, Kate, but he seemed truly remorseful when he sang a beautifully phrased, sentimental Addio fiorito asil. By the time he learned that Butterfly would have loved him forever if he wanted her, it was far too late. For her, the only possibilities were an honorable death or life as an outcast so, like her father before her, she chose to die.

From left to right: Vytautas Juozapaitis (Sharpless), Viara Zhelezova (Suzuki) and Elena Razgylyaeva (Butterfy). Photo © 2006 Robin Grant
From left to right: Vytautas Juozapaitis (Sharpless), Viara Zhelezova (Suzuki) and Elena Razgylyaeva (Butterfy). Photo © 2006 Robin Grant

As Goro, Giorgio Dinev was a hard working marriage broker who tried to find a new husband who would support Butterfly and her child. One of his candidates was the playboy Prince Yamadori, admirably portrayed and ably sung by Hristo Sarafov. Although her part was small, Vesselina Ponorska made an impression as an energetic and thoroughly western Kate.

Elena Razgylyaeva (Butterfy) with her son Sorrow. Photo © 2006 Robin Grant
Elena Razgylyaeva (Butterfy) with her son Sorrow. Photo © 2006 Robin Grant

Giorgio Lalov's staging was realistic. The piece was presented in the original nineteenth century Japanese setting described by the composer and his librettists. Thus, the atmosphere of the story was brought out by the period sets and costumes of Valentin Topencharov. Conductor Krassimir Topolov emphasized the emotional punch and expansive romanticism of this powerful work. He gave a well balanced interpretation of Puccini's masterpiece and the suburban New York audience showed its appreciation for the company who brought an excellent performance to them instead of expecting them to travel to the inner city for art.

Copyright © 19 November 2006 Maria Nockin, Arizona USA

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'MADAMA BUTTERFLY' IN LOS ANGELES

'MADAMA BUTTERFLY' ON DVD (NETHERLANDS OPERA)

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