Barbiere just ended, and yes, I listened to the entire thing. I am delivering the review I promised.
I love that this opera has a happy ending. Coupled with the fact I thought the singing was stellar, for the most part. Camarena played our Conte. When he started, I was like “wow, disappointing and unenthusiastic” but by the end of the evening I was blown away. He just sang this aria that sounded so beyond hard. I’ve never heard of this aria before, (I’m not a total aficionado of Bel Canto, even though I much like it) like I’ve heard of Una Voce, but it was amazing. Unfortunately, I got confused with the libretto and just awkwardly sat through what he was singing. Even now I have no Idea what he was singing about…
Isabel Leonard was probably touched by the ghost of Rossini at birth. She seems to me the quintessential Rossini mezzo, besides Elina Garanca. She has just this perfect tone that’s ethereal yet dark in the back. I feel that is what a female Rossini singer needs. It was the same way with Garanca in Cenerentola. It just works.
I found Pogossov quite enjoyable as Figaro. The entire cast was convincing through radio and he was no exception. I do miss Mattei, who was in the HD transmission of Barbiere a few seasons back but Pogossov was good. His voice seems lighter then Mattei, which elevates his level of comedy. He seemed like he fit in well.
Jennifer Check as Berta though, was the most convincing of all though. Each time she sneezed, (Is that something Rossini or the director created?) I was rolling on the floor laughing. It was hysterical. Her aria was also quite well done also.
I loved Barbeire di Siviglia. This was actually my first hearing of the full piece, and I’m happy I decided to buckle down and review it.