This was a very good show, lovely set and costumes, beautiful singing, excellent staging (especially the first act.) Â I’ve seen a number of three act operas lately, and it dawned on me that I would not have the faintest idea of how to go about structuring a 3 act theater piece. Â I’m so totally steeped in the American musical theater tradition of two acts, I just don’t know what you need that third one for.
“Abduction” is a singspiel, and contains some really excellent tunes. Â My only problem with it is that clearly Herr Mozart got a little tired of cute ditties and decided to flex his compositional muscles during the second act. Â Wolfie dear, this is neither the time, nor the place. Â The music is beautiful and all, but the lengthy duets and quartets really take away from the dramatic unfolding of the piece.
Another note on this performance: prior to the show, it was announced that Steven DavidslimÂ had been suffering from a cold but would sing that night anyway, so the audience was asked to be forgiving. Â Um, what? Â I’m sorry, Mr. Davislim, it just doesn’t work that way. Â Either you can sing or you can’t.
This reminds me so much of everyÂ musical theater/opera audition I have ever sat through. Â Inevitably, people (particularly young people) will come in and mention that they have a cold. Â Ugh, JUST GET ON WITH IT! Â If you really have a cold, which you don’t, we’ll be able to hear through it. Â Auditioners in this situation invariably begin responding to these warnings with: “Oh yes, it seems like there’s something going around”. Â Let’s just cut the crap, shall we?
No matter. Â The real star of the night was Matthew Polenzani, a beautiful lyric tenor that filled the entire hall with a rich, full sound. Â Kudos as well to Aleksandra Kurzak and Andre Silvestrelli.