Deutsche Oper Berlin:”I due Foscari”

Berlino, Deutsche Oper, Stagione Lirica 2011/2012
Tragedia Lirica in due atti, libretto di Francesco Maria Piave, dalla tragedia The two Foscari di George Byron.
Musica di Giuseppe Verdi
Francesco Foscari LEO NUCCI
Jacopo Foscari RAMON VARGAS
Lucrezia Contarini ANGELA MEADE
Jacopo Loredano /Servo TOBIAS KEHRER
Coro e Orchestrar Deutschen Oper Berlin
Direttore Roberto Rizzi Brignoli
Maestro del Coro William Spaulding
Esecuzione in forma di concerto
Berlino, 9 maggio 2012

Foscari 1Leo Nucci turned a good night at the opera into a great one in Berlin when, near the end of I due Foscari he showed that he can still deliver full throated vibrant singing with great high notes and finishes just an instant after the orchestral playout. Until then Ramon Vargas may have been the vocal primo, with his beautiful slightly throaty (a la Carreras) voice and the passionate arc of his expression. Angela Meade was be no means put in the shade. A young and talented exponent of early Verdi and Bellini, she has wonderful agilitá, a very exciting top and often starts with what seems like an ample sound, and ends with long vibrant tones. In between she sounds fine, but not quite as committed to legato and sound. Her piani are constrained, probably a relic of younger days as a coloratura, but she picks her moments and had a well deserved success.
Foscari 2Roberto Rizzi-Brignoli’s inventively circular left arm and expressive body language got a pulsing yet accurate performance from the Deutche Oper Orchestra, and he managed a marvelous flavorful Act II opening chorus. He also kept the vocal cadenzas coordinated and flowing. Bass Tobias Kehrer showed a strong attractive voice but his singing lacked elasticity. Playing the old father and Doge who loses power  it was hard not to wonder if the same were true for the artist. Nucci started out with touching tenderness but the voice seemed dry and not as present as it once was. Thus with Vargas who now suits Jacobo Foscari so well and the fresh and talented Meade  we had a very fine representation of this piece. But when the Lion roared, so did we all. Viva Verdi! Viva Leo!
Foto © Bettina Stöß