Archive | May 2014

A Streetcar Named Desire

Dear friends ,

I am so sorry that for such a long time I haven’t written anything on my blog.But tonight I found out why that happened.

I like writing about exciting , incredible things and events and unfortunately apart from the drama we lived last December when our house caught a fire , all of the following months were a nightmare I didn’t feel writing about.

But tonight something incredible happened. I saw the opera “A Streetcar named Desire” by Andre Previn at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, and I realized that I had to write about it.

This performance was much above my expectations. Actually, I have to admit that I cried during the third act and at the finale of the opera — something I didn’t do when I watched the film version with Vivien Leigh and Marlon Brando. I loved the film, but tonight I couldn’t stop my tears. Renee Fleming’s performance of Blanche DuBois was sublime. Her amazing voice – especially her “ pianissimo “ at the end – was more than remarkable and I couldn’t hold my tears. Her acting was beyond belief – incredible for an opera singer. So far she is the best opera singer ever to exist. She is truly the “singular star” of the opera world — that’s what Ryan McKinny says of her and he is her co-star, playing Stanley Kowalski. He is a wonderful singer and although his voice is that of a Kowalski, his physique is not. But who can ever get in the pants of Marlon Brando? After seeing Brando, you can’t possibly imagine another Kowalski.

The director of the opera, Brad Dalton, had an incredible touch which comes close to Tennessee Williams’ story. And what a story that is!  He obviously understood and loved the play. And his directions were all in sync with the story, Previn’s music and the drama. The young conductor Evan Rogister was incredible, and he grew together with the music and the storyline.

While in the first act I thought that Previn could have put a little of the New Orleans vibe and maybe a bit of what Gershwin did in “Porgy and Bess” to make the music less 1997 cacophonic experience, his intention remarkably grew higher by the third act. And that final act was a brilliant, unique and unforgettable musical achievement between the music, direction and irresistible acting and singing. It was an artistic climax that will be hard to match (ever) in the future. Renee Fleming is the greatest artist in the singing world and a person should be lucky to have seen her at least once onstage.

This premiere was worth all of what I had missed this year.

Let’s praise the great art and the great performers. Let’s praise Placido Domingo, who brought the LA Opera to this level.

Thank you.