I went back for a second look at Roberto Devereux at the COC last night. My original impressions pretty much stand but this time I remembered my opera glasses and was able to focus more on some of the details of this quite intricate production. I do still struggle a bit with the music. There’s this jaunty little tune (doo de doo doo doo doo dooo) that crops up all the time and often at the least emotionally appropriate moments and there’s the interminable overture and thank goodness for Lawless’ allegorical prelude because listening to it in front of a closed curtain would have been intolerable. Still, the drama was pretty intense and Sondra Radvanovsky has, if anything, grown into the role. The last scene, portraying the dying queen’s emotional disintegration is worth the price of admission. I also got more of a sense of Russell Braun and Allyson McHardy being in role and having developed some chemistry that was a bit absent on opening night.
There are four more peerformances between now and May 21st with Giuseppe Filianoti now replacing the excellent Leonardo Capalbo in the title role.
Photo credit – Michael Cooper