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Tosca in Torre del Lago


TOSCA in Torre del Lago

di Giacomo Puccini

Torre del Lago Puccini, Lucca (Italy)

Gran Teatro all’aperto Giacomo Puccini – 2016, August 11th

Review by Fabio Bardelli.

Lago di Massaciuccolo, foto Fabio Bardelli

Lago di Massaciuccolo, foto Fabio Bardelli

LUCCA/ITALY: The Tosca by Giacomo Puccini under review is a production of the 62nd Puccini Festival in Torre del Lago, and is characterized by the debut of the greek soprano Dimitra Theodossiou in the theater built on the banks of the lake so dear to the italian composer near his villa.

Tosca: Dimitra Thedossiou and  Alessandro Golden as Cavaradossi. Photo Festival Puccini. Lucca.

Tosca: Dimitra Thedossiou and Alessandro Golden as Cavaradossi. Photo Festival Puccini. Lucca.

In delineating her character the singer displays, unfortunately as it has become common with her, a rather uneven vocal line and an inconstant way of singing. She shows some good intentions in the middle register, but unfortunately also shows a top reached with great difficulty and near to the cry. She adjusts a little some notes, goes wrong some words and musical lines, and is scenically credible for her artistic class although by a rather mannered and stereotyped acting.

Tosca: Dimitra Thedossiou and Alessandro Golden as Cavaradossi. Photo Festival Puccini. Lucca.

Tosca: Dimitra Thedossiou and Alessandro Golden as Cavaradossi. Photo Festival Puccini. Lucca.

The tenor Alessandro Goldoni shows a still immature vocality, his voice becomes stronger as it goes above the stave, but he shows also an ordinary phrasing, pitch problems and lacks in deepening his character. Not to mention that his acting on the scene is rather unreliable.

The baritone Carlo Guelfi is the head of the papal police Scarpia, but vocally the singer is really in bad shape: the voice is scarcely sustained on the diaphragm, seems senescent, the ascent to the highest notes are very dangerous because the voice not being well sustained fluctuates sharply. Moreover he seems to want to exaggerate gestures and acting to mask his vocal deficits, but nevertherless they are quite evident.
The other singers in smaller roles were rather good.

The conductor Alberto Veronesi, after the recent artistic and political controversies surely not worth mentioning for a non Italian readership, conducts in a very approximate way one of the finest and more theatrical operas by Puccini with slow pacing and without theatrical tension. He isn’t attentive to the relationship with the stage, the orchestra’s colour is fundamentally grayish without coloristic researches, and with really scarce moments of tension. Overall an almost soporific Tosca that seemed to me interminable.

The visual part of this production of Tosca was curated by the stage director Enrico Vanzina who used traditional scenes of Puccini Festival Foundation and costumes of Cerratelli Foundation.

We saw almost nothing of directing, the scene of the Te Deum was really disappointing, the end of the third act turned to involuntary comedy for a projection on the background of the stage of Tosca coming down from the Castel Sant’Angelo in slow motion … For the rest, the singers were acting as they wanted, who better or worse, and the stage director’s hand was not really view.
Overall as you can well understand it
 was a typically “summer” and “touristic” performance, whith a not too large audience that booed Mr Guelfi and Mr Veronesi, whistled Mr Goldoni and applauded Mrs Theodossiou.

Puccini piano, inside the Puccini Villa. Photo Museum Villa Puccini

Puccini piano, inside the Puccini Villa. Photo Museum Villa Puccini

Production:

Direttore, Alberto Veronesi

Regia, Enrico Vanzina

Scene della Fondazione Festival Pucciniano

Costumi, Fondazione Cerratelli

Orchestra, Coro e Coro delle Voci Bianche del Festival Puccini

Floria Tosca, Dimitra Theodossiou

Mario Cavaradossi, Alessandro Goldoni

Scarpia, Carlo Guelfi

Angelotti, Davide Mura

Sagrestano, Claudio Ottino

Spoletta, Tiziano Barontini

Sciarrone, Franco Cerri

Carceriere, Stefano Fagioli

Pastorello, Daria Capasso

Fabio Bardelli

 

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