Diana Damrau in La Sonnambula

« previous episode | next episode »

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Mezzo Diana Damrau as Amina in 'La Sonnambula.' Mezzo Diana Damrau as Amina in 'La Sonnambula.' (Marty Sohl/Metropolitan Opera)

Tune in Saturday at 1 pm as the Metropolitan Opera broadcasts their production of Bellini's La Sonnambula featuring German soprano Diana Damrau as Amina. 

The Mary Zimmerman production of La Sonnambula updates the classic opera to modern day. The premise is that a cast has met in a loft to rehearse an upcoming performance. The costumes are modern dress and Amina is a diva with a bit of attitude— a departure from the traditional portrayal of Amina as young and naive. During the rehearsal Amina takes a nap and her sleepwalking adventures begin. 

This performance also features the Mexican tenor Javier Camarena as Amina's betrothed, Elvino, plus Australian soprano Rachelle Durkin as Lisa, and Italian bass-baritone Michele Pertusi as Rodolfo.


Conductor: Marco Armiliato
Amina: Diana Damrau
Elvino: Javier Camarena
Rodolfo: Michele Pertusi

Comments [10]

concetta nardone from Nassau

I do not like I Puritani. I call it I Puri Cani. (Dogs), so there. Ah yes, La Divina in Norma. The finale when she pleads with her father almost makes me cry.
Best wishes

Mar. 30 2014 07:24 AM

I did not hear today's broadcast, though I did see Natalie Dessay in this production. I agree with those who quibble with the setting. A "rehearsal-within-an-opera-of-the-opera" is convoluted and awkward.

I am NOT a Wagnerian heldentenor blah-blah-blah.


Mar. 30 2014 01:08 AM
Robert St.Onge from Cochiti Lake,NM

About the lack of a 'Norma' broadcast: Whose Norma should they have broadcast? Ms Radvanovsky or Ms Meade? They featured both with performances that kept a healthy balance of excitement for the audiences in a period that had no broadcasts. That drew people to the house to hear both. That's the way operatic business happens sometimes. Perhaps in the near future both divas will have broadcasts. We can only hope. Maria Callas never had a broadcast of 'Norma'. And I like 'I Puritani' very much and am looking forward to hear a voice new to me.

Mar. 29 2014 05:45 PM
Kenneth Bennett Lane, Lake Hiawatha, NJ from Richard Wagner

GIUDITTA PASTA and RUBINI were great., legendary singers in the Amina and Elvino roles respectively if we can judge by the reviews of their day and Bellini's own modeling of the roles with their voices as the vocal template.
In today's casting DIANA DAMRAU's singing fits like a glove the music of Amina and Javier Camerena is an ideal Elvino, if not with the rich exciting timbre of some of his predecessors in that role. Maestro Marco Armiliato maintains throughout a spirited sensitive totally stylistically Bellinian savor which holds everything together as a tasty main dish in the culinary sense. The chorus and orchestra deserve much credit for their excellence.

Mar. 29 2014 04:57 PM
Adele (aka AF) from Nassau County, Long Island

Singing today is great. And I, too, wish the Norma had been broadcast!

Mar. 29 2014 03:35 PM
concetta nardone from Nassau

Bellini was like holy water. Composers such as Chopin and even Wagner dipped into his style. Siegfried's Rhine Journey sounds very Bellini inspired. Finale of Norma and Magic Fire Music sounds like they flow into each other.
I cannot understand why the Met did not broadcast Norma but will broadcast I Puritani.

Mar. 29 2014 03:12 PM
Kenneth Bennett Lane, Lake Hiawatha,lNJ from Richard Wagner Music Drama Institute, Boonton, NJ

In the days of Frieda Hempel, Amelita Galli-Curci, Luisa Tetrazzini, Jenny Lind and Adelina Patti Amina's role was a "sleeper." a real tour de force for velocity scales and acuti, high notes, aplenty. Today's stage directors consider themselves the divos or divas and play with the time and place and even often the story line of the operas they direct. Too bad their technique requires deviation from the composer's and text writer's libretto to assuage their impulsive drive for sensationalism to garner fame. As an opera composer myself if I had anything to do with a production of my operas, I would stipulate that the works be performed with the original localities with no change of text and with costumes representative of the era of the setting. Wagner tried to maintain PARSIFAL as a stage consecrating venture and a sole exclusive property of BAYREUTH for the financial benefit of the FESTSPIELHAUS. He lost his battle to the Met Opera in 1921, many years after his death. One of my voice teachers, Margarete Matzenuer sang the Kundry role and thereafter was denied performing again at the Festspielhaus. I am a Wagnerian heldentenor and am not blind to Bayreuth's often intentional misreading of the Master's epic oeuvre. Nonethelless, she and one of my other voice teachers Frieda Hempel had illustrious careers at the MET OPERA and the major opera houses world-wide. We are all at the mercy of those who purportedly represent our efforts.

Mar. 29 2014 02:01 PM
tony from new haven,ct.

the last time I heard this work was on old lp with joan Sutherland,that was many years ago..so,this is very new to me..it sounds good,..

Mar. 29 2014 01:49 PM
Frank from UWS

This is one of the better productions I've seen in the Gelb era. The conceit was a little convoluted but it had a good look.

Apparently things are going from bad to worse with the labor negotiations at the Met. The house wants big, big cuts in musicians' salaries and benefits. We'll see if there is a fall season at this rate.

Mar. 29 2014 01:32 PM
concett nardone from Nassau

Amina could have blamed Ambien for her sleepwalking just like the Kennedys.

Mar. 29 2014 10:58 AM

Leave a Comment

Email addresses are required but never displayed.

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