Verdi's La Traviata

« previous episode | next episode »

Saturday, March 30, 2013

The Met revives Willy Decker’s modern-dress, boldly minimalist staging of Verdi’s La Traviata, which debuted at the Salzburg Festival in 2005 and was first presented at the Met on Dec. 31, 2010.

The German soprano Diana Damrau is Violetta, the sickly courtesan who enters an ill-fated love affair with a young gentleman named Alfredo, played here by tenor Saimir Pirgu. Plácido Domingo is Giorgio Germont, a role he's sung numerous times since 1970. Yannick Nézet-Séguin, music director of the Philadelphia Orchestra, conducts.

Cast:

Conductor: Yannick Nézet-Séguin
Violetta Valéry: Diana Damrau
Alfredo Germont: Saimir Pirgu
Giorgio Germont: Plácido Domingo

The WQXR e-newsletter. Show highlights, links to music news, on-demand concerts, events from The Greene Space and more.

Comments [12]

Peter O'Malley from Oakland, New Jersey

I haven't seen this live, yet, just on TV. While minimalism that does not intrude on the actual story (is it woefully outre to speak of an opera libretto, however silly some of them may be, as telling a story??) is one thing, pretentious silliness cloaked as minimalism is something else. My question for those who saw Saturday's performance: did Placido, as Germont, slug his son, as in the telecast? I am hoping he had the artistic integrity to refuse that stupid bit of business. Diana Damrau was predictably excellent in the parts of the broadcast (Act I, primarily) that we were able to hear.

Apr. 01 2013 11:40 AM

CBC What an honor it must have been. Alberta was an encyclopedia of operatic knowledge. She was great on the intermissions. I especially liked when she, Mr. Goldovsky, Jan Behr etc. would have at it. I remember a musical question & the pianist, an asst. cond. at the Met played the wrong note. Alberta immediately said you should have played an Eb not an E. The pianist replayed the phrase & Alberta was correct. Another time someone commented about the last note of Butterfly's lullaby as being a pp Bb. Ms. Masiello said, no no, B natural.
She sang at the City opera, from what I understand, in the '50's. Now I know where you get your fire & vinegar. Please have a speedy and complete recovery. Writing to you now makes me feel as if I were communicating with her somehow.

Mar. 31 2013 12:34 AM
concetta nardone from Nassau

CBC: What a coincidence. I knew Ms. Masiello. I used to prompt for a small opera workshop. She was a superb musician. Many years ago. This was in the 50's. Domingo is singing beautifully.

Mar. 30 2013 03:13 PM
Marschallin from Manhattan

What is the deal with Provence? Clearly you have not been there! I am from the province, and the aria breaks my heart every time!

Mar. 30 2013 02:46 PM
Babysop101

I am a Very young singer, but this music has come to mean so much to me over the years. I would have given anything to be at the Met today, but I am so grateful that this is available here for me to play. Domingo and Damrau are two of my favorites, and Mr. Pirgu's Alfredo is divine as well. This is what music is all about! Happy Easter!

Mar. 30 2013 02:44 PM

CBC Yes, I have the recording from Vienna with Vinay as Iago & DelMonaco as Otello. Also, Domingo record Rigoletto for DVD. I can't agree more, Germont is soooo boring. What's the deal with Di Provenza? He keeps repeating the same lines over & over - very boring.

I'm glad you enjoy our back & forths. It proves opera is very much alive. We also are civil & never try to bend the other to our will. It's opinion & absolutely no rancor is involved. But I enoy Ms. Nardone's opinions, vinegar & fire. Altho I have never spoken to her, I hear Alberta Masiello's voice when I read her postings. (That's a compliment to those of you who don't know who Ms. Masilello was). Can't wiat for Rheingold with a real Wotan next week, too bad the Brunhilde will not be of my liking in the subsequent operas. Best to all, especially you Beduzza.

Mar. 30 2013 02:31 PM
BabySop101

Happy Easter to all!! Domingo and Damrau are two of my favorite artists and I am so grateful to hear this online when I can't be there. Heartfelt and sensational story and Singing. This is what music is about. <3

Mar. 30 2013 02:14 PM
concetta nardone from Nassau

Glad you enjoy our back and forths. Missed listening to the opera while in hospital. Forced to watch some of my roomates tv and what passes for the popular culture.
As for today's Traviata, waiting for the card scene which has some great pacing and the argument the lovers have. Domingo's voice has darkened beautifully but Papa Germont is one of the most boring characters in opera along with Sharpless. He is such a fine singing actor and I think this role does not do him justice. I hope he goes on to do Iago. Years ago, Ramon Vinay sang both Otello and Iago.
Best wishes

Mar. 30 2013 01:51 PM

Greetings from California!
I have always enjoyed reading comments from both of you. They are down to earth, unpretentious, direct comments and discussions, which have added to my listening experience from MET. May you continue to have good health and interest to comment on new productions of these great works of art. Enjoy!

Mar. 30 2013 01:05 PM

BCB I have back problems also. Bulges, very little disk material in certain areas. I can fully understand your pain. I just knew you weren't yourself. I wish you a speedy recovery.

Mar. 30 2013 11:14 AM
concetta nardone from Nassau

CBC: Thanks for asking. In hospital whole month of January, sciatica and herniated disc. Now have bursitis of shoulder. I am better and thanks. Will only listen to card scene of this opera as I have grown tired of this heart of gold. Buona Pasqua.
To all Happy Easter and Happy Passover.

Mar. 30 2013 07:27 AM

CBC Buona Pasqua to you & your family. And a most happy & blessed Passover to our Jewish bothers & sisters. It is a time for rebirth - La Primavera.
Beduzza, I am concerned about you. Your postings have been mild compared to when we used to get into it. I truly hope you are in good health. As always, my best to you. Maybe we can fight when they air the Ring. Looking forward to next week. sei benedetta !!!!

Mar. 30 2013 07:21 AM

Leave a Comment

Register for your own account so you can vote on comments, save your favorites, and more. Learn more.
Please stay on topic, be civil, and be brief.
Email addresses are never displayed, but they are required to confirm your comments. Names are displayed with all comments. We reserve the right to edit any comments posted on this site. Please read the Comment Guidelines before posting. By leaving a comment, you agree to New York Public Radio's Privacy Policy and Terms Of Use.