[Met Performance] CID:189630
Lucia di Lammermoor {305} Metropolitan Opera House: 12/25/1961.


Metropolitan Opera House
December 25, 1961


Lucia...................Anna Moffo
Edgardo.................Richard Tucker
Enrico..................Anselmo Colzani
Raimondo................William Wilderman
Normanno................Robert Nagy
Alisa...................Carlotta Ordassy
Arturo..................Charles Anthony
Dance...................Carole Kroon
Dance...................Craig Crosson

Conductor...............Silvio Varviso

Review of Irving Kolodin in the Saturday Review of Literature

With the Philharmonic enjoying a holiday interlude, and recitalists scarce as unoccupied taxicabs, musical interest was concentrated at the Metropolitan, where Donizetti's "Lucia" resumed a rather more conventional aspect with the first appearance of Anna Moffo in the title role. By the measure of such notable recent Lucias as Sutherland and Callas, Miss Moffo's is, dramatically as well as vocally, rather slender. By the measure of some other predecessors (such as Dobbs, Peters, Wilson, Munsel, et al.), Miss Moffo's endowments are sizable. Which shows that standards may change, even if a role doesn't.

Taken all together, it would seem that what Miss Moffo has in view is a mélange of values from both sources: the agility and girlish charm of the small-sized Lucias of the pre-Callas period,-the substance and dramatic values of the newer epoch. This calls for all sorts of resources, which, with her, are not yet quite assorted. What she has to offer is a thoroughly studied rather than fully mastered command of vocal complications, a highly promising but incomplete assessment of dramatic demands which culminated in a "Mad Scene" in which more emphasis was put on such externals as gowning and accessories (scarfs, etc.), postures and floor work, than on the chilling effect of the vocal writing when fully realized, Miss Moffo could be a thoroughly good Lucia if she decided which kind she is best suited to be, as her sparkle is not as luminous as the light-voiced singers, or her power equal to the more dramatic. Anselmo Colzani had an unhappy evening in the legato requirements of Enrico Ashton, William Wildermann a very good one in the broad effects of Raimondo, and Richard Tucker, who apparently doesn't know the meaning of the word "tuckered," a resplendent one as Edgardo. Silvio Varviso continued as resident authority in charge of Donizetti.

Review of John Ardoin in the February 1962 issue of Musical America

Anna Moffo is a brave girl to essay her first Lucia less than a month after Joan Sutherland's triumphant appearances in the role. It would be less than human not to compare the two, and, all-in-all, Miss Moffo can hold her own with her Australian colleague.

Dramatically, while Miss Sutherland's Lucia is a series of stylized poses and gestures, Miss Moffo's is a much truer and far deeper characterization, creating a warm, passionate woman. Vocally, Miss Moffo's voice is fuller and more colorful in the middle and lower registers, but above the staff it thins out, and she cannot toss off the roulades and trills of the part with the Sutherland abandon. Both ladies have the capacity for making an audience yell itself hoarse, and the Metropolitan is blessed to have two such remarkable Lucias.

Anselmo Colzani's first Enrico with the company was ideal. This excellent singing-actor turns every role he touches into a gold mine of vocal excitement and dramatic insight. Carlotta Ordassy's first Alisa was vocally and visually dowdy, but William Wildermann, appearing as Raimondo for the first time this season, was superb. Richard Tucker repeated his fine Edgardo during this brilliant and fiery evening.

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