December 20, 2008
All I can honestly say about seeing Thais yesterday is that 9:00 AM is definitely too early in the day to appreciate an opera. Since that information doesn’t really seem to warrant sending an email, I’ll put this aside until after I see the Encore performance at 7:00 PM on January 7.
January 8, 2009
I saw it and it was excellent. I enjoyed it much more than I did last month, but at the same time I felt that if I saw it again I’d like it even more. Unfortunately, that may never happen. This is the first production by the Met in more than 30 years – Beverly Sills starred in that one!
One of the many advantages of MetHD vs Live comes during scene breaks, of which there were 4 not counting the Act breaks. If you are there, you see the curtain descend but the house stays dark – you’re on your own for entertainment for a few minutes. But here the camera focused on the tremendous scene changing going on back stage. There must have been two or three dozen stage hands all moving big and small stuff off stage and other big and small stuff on stage and hardly ever getting in each other’s way. (Although at one point 5 men were carrying a horizontal palm tree which they had lowered from its vertical position on the set, and the leaves at the far end brushed against a different stage hand who had been a little slow to duck). Particularly impressive was a change from one desert scene to another in which they rearranged the fascinating floor pieces which simulated rippled desert sands.
Coming up: Puccini’s La Rondine. Stay tuned.