Friday, May 30, 2008


Well, you need a post title to get attention don't you. This accurately describes La Boheme though which Lynn and I went to last night. It was pretty good with some great performances. Rodolfo (Jesus Garcia) has a wonderful voice but it seemed a bit light against the music (Auckland Philharmonia )- probably all those double basses droning away in the back.
For me the show was spoilt by the sets. I don't mind modern settings in opera as long as they fit the music and story. In this case in Act 1 the poet and painter are supposed to be freezing in their apartment in winter and Rodolfo burns one of his manuscripts to keep warm. The set though looked like a student flat that while scruffy, had warm looking light and Rodolfo had written his script on an Apple laptop - so the poignancy was lost. Maybe I'm being picky but sometimes designers can just be too clever for themselves.
Overall it was a great evening - we love opera in New Zealand because the quality can be right up there but everything is done in a nice realaxed provincial style. Some people dress up in evening gear and look ridiculous but most just dress tidily (with a little bit of glitz) Nice.
Where's the wine in this? Well they drank wine (and vodka) pretty freely on stage.
Aotea Centre have given their wine contract to Pernod Ricard (aka Montana)so a nice cross section of Montana, Corbans, Stoneleigh, Lindauer and Deutz are available. We had Montana Reserve Chardonnay 2006 and this time didn't spill it.


david santos said...

Hi, the Wine!
I loved this post and this blog.
have a nice weekend

Anonymous said...

Why do you always pick on the bass players? Is it because of their personalities?
R (of RBB)

THE WINE GUY said...

"Why do you always pick on the bass players? Is it because of their personalities?
R (of RBB)"

I don't pick on bass players, you are confusing me with some other (much older and grumpier) guy who seems to have latched onto these blog communications. Who have you told about the blogs?

JY said...

I love opera. LOVE IT. Puccini is wonderful, and Boheme has some of his best arias. "Your tiny hand is frozen" has maybe the best C note in the tenor catalogue.

The reason Kiri is wonderful is because she has a perfect voice for this kind of warm Italianate sound. She is impossible to top doing O Mio Babinno Caro, or the aria she is used for (sorry, forgotten the name of it) for the kissing scene in Room With a View. Opera arias are the only songs that can make me cry.

Sontag might say white culture is a cancer, but in our defence I give her opera arias. Human beings are capable of incredible things. From Nessun Dorma to the current probe on Mars. Let's give ourselves a break.