Opening night at the Met for the 2014-2014 season has finally come to a close. If this is a bellwether for the rest of the season, then we’re going to have a fantastic eight months.
Alexei Tanovitski was only ALRIGHT as Prince Gremin. While all the notes were there and he has some great low notes set into his gravelly voice, it lacked any type of passion, as heard via radio. Valery Gergiev’s conducting lost some spitfire towards the end, with a Polonaise that just didn’t communicate joy.
In the final scene, Netrebko sounded beautiful, showing off the full emotional breadth of her voice. She didn’t blend as well with Kweicien, vocally, as one could have hoped for, but she maintained a beautiful tone during the duet. Kweicien sounds sort of uncomfortable in the role. It’s hard to describe, but it didn’t feel like the right fit.
For me, Oksana Volkova was the biggest surprise, in a positive way. Piotr Beczala also made a great impression as Lenski.
All in all, this was a fantastic opening night. Thank you for following along with my blogs, and I’m looking forward to reviewing the performance on the 12th.
Ken Howard/ Metropolitan Opera