The Cycle of Great Performers, which has serious problems for fans to listen to their pianists, filled the National Auditorium a month ago with the presence of Gustavo Dudamel and now it has returned to obtain that those leave massively of their houses to fill until the last armchair of the Symphonic Hall to the reclamation of Cecilia Bartoli, an artist with an amazing popular pull. The Italian mezzo-soprano has built her career largely as a succession of individual projects. Forge each of them with the utmost secrecy, and secrecy reaches the point of having the translators sign the texts that they generate (since they are the only ones outside their inner circle that necessarily have to know their content before marketing) a confidentiality clause. He has made his career a perfect product of marketing in which she controls each and every one of the pieces. She lavishes on stage just the right thing, avoids the big theaters (where her small voice has serious problems to be heard), reduces her few operatic appearances to the Zurich Opera (and in recent years, to the Salzburg Pentecost Festival, which she program) and it is difficult, if not impossible, to see her sing something different from the repertoire she chooses for her own projects, almost always linked to some record releases that report, or report, huge benefits.
This time it has returned to make target not with a solo appearance, but with a semi-staged version of The Cenerentola, the opera of Rossini in which he began to settle his credentials more than twenty years ago. Bartoli no longer has the age or the vocal freshness to continue facing the role, but she seems happily installed in the tunnel of time, because Angelina fits in a thousand wonders with that image of innocent, seductive and pizpireta young girl who likes to embody. Rossini, however, goes bad with several flaws that were felt strongly as soon as the concert began.
Rossini: The Cenerentola. Cecilia Bartoli, Carlos Chausson, Edgardo Rocha and Alessandro Corbelli, among others. The Musiciens du Prince – Monaco. Dir .: Gianluca Capuano. National Auditorium, October 22.
The first and main, an orchestra of very poor quality, and is not worth the alibi of the period instruments. The Musiciens du Prince – Monaco, as it invites you to suspect its name, looks like a group ad hoc, without its own personality and with enormous inequalities among its members. This was evident in an overture plagued by imbalances and false notes, enlivened only by the pertinaz beep of a mobile that its owner, a spectator seated in the chairs of the choir, was unable to silence. In her it was also evident immediately that Gianluca Capuano is anything but a refined director, akin to the Rossinian language or possessor of the necessary technique to face it. The essential clarity of the textures was almost always blurred and the fluidity could not break through the frequent brusqueness. The fact that the conductor and orchestra were placed behind the singers' backs, without possible visual contact, caused, and much, constant imbalances and disagreements between one and the other.
The vocal part did not take flight until Carlos Chausson appeared on the scene, which immediately brought up several levels of interpretation. In a formidable vocal state at 68, with a school diction (even in the devilish passages of the song chair to raffica, in which the text should be sung like machine gun bursts), an absolute mastery of the scene and supported by his very long rossinian experience, especially in this role of Don Magnifico, his interventions were by far the best of the afternoon, including the concertantes, in which he always showed his face and had the necessary sound presence. Fortunately, the public noticed and dedicated so much after his two great arias (in the second was even better than in the first) as in the end applause and enthusiastic cheers. And it does not seem far-fetched to say that his were exclamations of admiration won entirely by his own merits, without cheating or cardboard.
Cecilia Bartoli brings the applause from home, so to speak, because her supporters are already conquered for the cause, and her clever flatteries do nothing but redouble them. He has flashes of a great singer, who doubts it, but his voice, in spite of the zeal and carelessness with which he has taken care of it, has become much more dull, especially in the central zone, and he abuses forced serious, with its characteristic color change. He can still face coloratura with guarantees, it is true, although he often readjusts it to accommodate himself better, without it being easy to understand what he is singing: nothing to do with Chausson's crystalline diction, even in the most adverse conditions. The Italian wore three dresses, the second of which, in silver, made her shine with her own light.
Of the rest of the cast, Alessandro Corbelli, who already sang and recorded with her Dandini in the nineties, proved to be a singer of excellent school and very good manners, but her voice is already severely punished and the fiato he plays tricks on him. Disappointing Edgardo Rocha as Don Ramiro, with many problems in the high notes and a very discontinuous singing line. Correct Martina Jankova and Rosa Bove, who accentuated perhaps excessively the ridiculous character of their characters to the detriment of their vocal performance, and irrelevant, by expressionless, José Coca as Alidoro. Well the reduced male choir of the Opera of Monte Carlo and very in line with the heard the superscripts, often desynchronized. The semipuesta in scene cultivated a humor of white glove to cause the easy laugh. A well-known luxury watch brand – Bartoli attracts money like a magnet – added part of the first floor of the Auditorium for its guests and the Monaco Tourist Office organized a cocktail at a nearby hotel after the concert. But money and artistic excellence do not always go hand in hand.