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The most powerful voice in this performance was that of bass Reinhard Hagen. He poured out floods of ringing tone and portrayed a sympathetic Landgraf Hermann. The other singing contestants, tenors Martin Zysset and Simeon Esper, bass-baritone Andrew Greenan and bass Scott Sikon were all assets to the production who sang with security and vocal acumen. As The Shepherd, Laura Portune was a convincing young boy, but her sound was rather fragile.

Robert Gambil as Tannhäuser. Photo © 2008 Cory Weaver
Robert Gambil as Tannhäuser. Photo © 2008 Cory Weaver

This was an excellent performance, both musically and histrionically. Several Wagner Societies have flown in from other parts of the US, and they certainly found the trip well worth their trouble.

Camilla Nylund (Elisabeth) prays for Tannhäuser's redemption while Russell Braun (Wolfram von Eschenbach) looks on. Photo © 2008 Cory Weaver
Camilla Nylund (Elisabeth) prays for Tannhäuser's redemption while Russell Braun (Wolfram von Eschenbach) looks on. Photo © 2008 Cory Weaver

 

Copyright © 4 February 2008 Maria Nockin, Arizona USA

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SAN DIEGO OPERA

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Cadenza Programme Note Library - Programme Notes by Mike Wheeler