* Notes *
The performance of Siegfried at the Met yesterday evening was a mixed bag. The orchestra sounded lovely, despite some roughness in the brass. The playing was deft and rich. The singing, however, left much to be desired. Siegfried himself, Christian Franz, had a rather frail sound. He had some pretty, warm moments, but he seemed to gasp quiet a bit. He was overwhelmed by the orchestra in Act III, though occasionally some of his shrieking carried over the pit. His percussion was rather good though. Linda Watson was fair as Brünnhilde, her vibrato wide, but her lower range is pleasing. Wendy White was engaging as Erda, without any trace of harshness. Robert Brubaker and Tom Fox sounded fine as Mime and Alberich, and Albert Dohmen rounded out the cast as the Wanderer.
The staging was particularly absurd this evening. For one thing, Siegfried gives Mime a high five, and all of the former's buffoonish, crude nature is heightened in this production. Mime and Alberich skipped, their giddiness and glee was palpable. The set and costumes continue to lack contrast, the characters do not look distinctive at all. The dragon was difficult to make out from the Family Circle, and he seemed to be underwater from the way he was lit. Though the transitional lighting between scenes in the last act was actually clever, one did feel that the scene was different, though the set was not switched out.
* Tattling *
A cellular phone rang at the beginning of the opera, and another one vibrated on two separate occasions during this act. As poor Franz cracked and wheezed though the second scene of Act III, half a dozen watch alarms went off in the course of 10 minutes. Apparently it was around 11pm.
Talking and whispering continued, though not to the extent of Das Rheingold. The couple next to us in standing room were roundly hushed, and they did remain mostly quiet after that. There was quite a lot of laughing as well, from everyone, it seemed. The titles must have been funny, and the staging certainly was.