Carlos Alvarez as Rigoletto and Ramón Vargas
as Duke of Mantua - still they are friends.
performances of two Verdi operas opened the month of October at the
London Royal Opera House Covent Garden. In the quite gloomy, but with
splendid costumes out-fitted Rigoletto- production of David McVicar (director
of the revival and choreographer: Leah Hausmann, stage design: Michael
Vale, costumes: Tanya McCallin, lightning: Paul Constable) it had with
the Spanish baritone Carlos Alvarez as Rigoletto and the Mexican tenor
Ramón Vargas as the Duke of Mantua two of the world's best interprets
of this repertory on stage. For Carlos Alvarez it was after his
acclaimed role debut exactly one year ago at the Teatro Real at Madrid (ESP)
his second engagement in this role.
Nobody can escape the mockery of Rigoletto -
Carlos Alvarez with Dervla
spite being just in his mid-thirties he understood to transfer into the
audience the enormous range of Rigoletto's emotions from the loving,
sensitive, despairing father over the in his body and soul crippled
human being to the sneering, humans contemptuous jester with credibility
and a brilliant voice with touching piani and just as powerful outbursts.
As good in form and credible was Ramón Vargas in the role of the
easy-going duke, to whom no woman can resist. Clear and nevertheless
warm in its timbre is his touching, with great smoothness, sensibility
and certainty guided tenor.
Gilda (Patrizia Ciovi) is the only person, who matters
something to Rigoletto
all registers very expressively and certain managed also the soprano
Patrizia Ciofi her role. Her voice was wonderfully matching with the
voices of Rigoletto and the Duke in the duets to great complete works.
Also the medium and the small roles were extremely well casted, as it
had Kurt Rydl as notorious Sparafucile, Leah- Marian Jones as seductive
or Darren Jeffery as humiliated father Count Monterone, who
embodied the role with a powerful and expressive bass,
what is unfortunately not very often the case. A big share in the
success of the evenings had the orchestra of the Royal Opera Houses
under the baton of Maurizio Benini and the choir under the direction of
Gilda dies in the arms of his father.
on October 12, in the last performance of this season (the 455th
performance of this production at the ROH) the stage technique failed -
after it had the general rehearsal of Wozzeck at the same afternoon -,
did not harm the performance of the singers. In contrary, those, who had
seen several performances shared the opinion that the half-scenic
performance with costumes but no stage design would have been the best
of this series in the vocal and musical aspects - prima la musica ....