Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Day 3 - Faust without Grigolo.

Classicalify spent day 3 in London scanning the CD stores, which is easy... The only shops worth it is HMV and Harold Moore's. HMV with two shops on Oxford street and Harold Moore just one block away from Oxford street, you can easily do them in the morning.

After a siesta in the afternoon it was time to prepare for Gounod's "Faust" at ROH Covent Garden. This was a performance Classicalify saw some years ago with Gheorghiu, Alagna, Terfel and Keenlyside to much appriciation! For this round, ROH is casting two sopranos, Gheorghiu and Swedish soprano Malin Byström together with Vittorio Grigolo, René Pape and Dmitri Hvorostovsky.

In good time to ROH to enjoy a glass of wine on the terrace Classicalify found out smoking is no longer allowed on the terrace... Quelle surprise! Classicalify also found out Vittorio Grigolo was indisposed and replaced by Philadelphian tenor James Valenti... hmmm...

The production by David McVicar with sets by Charles Edwards and costumes by Brigitte Reiffenstuel is a masterpiece of opera and much enjoyable, even if we prefer an interval after act 2...

The night belonged to René Pape as Méphistophélès and Malin Byström as Marguerite (a role she sang in Gothenburgh some years ago). To see Pape in gala drag for the Walpurgis Night scene is just as fun as Terfel in drag... but it seemed to Classicalify Pape did it with more style, feeling more comfortable than Terfel did.

1 comment:

  1. If you are still in London try:

    near Notting Hill Tube station. They have a large classical section and lots of rarities and second hand cds.

    How was Valenti? I was very unimpressed by his Pinkerton and Alfredo at the ROH.