[Met Performance] CID:255240
La Traviata {652} Metropolitan Opera House: 10/11/1978.

(Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
October 11, 1978


LA TRAVIATA {652}
Giuseppe Verdi--Francesco Maria Piave

Violetta................Mariana Nicolesco
Alfredo.................Carlo Bergonzi
Germont.................Mario Sereni
Flora...................Ariel Bybee
Gastone.................Charles Anthony
Baron Douphol...........Robert Goodloe
Marquis D'Obigny........Gene Boucher
Dr. Grenvil.............Philip Booth
Annina..................Ann Florio
Giuseppe................John Hanriot
Gardener................Paul De Paola
Dance...................Suzanne Laurence
Dance...................Dave Roeger

Conductor...............James Conlon

Review of Bill Zakariasen in the Daily News

There were some new voices to be heard Wednesday night as the Met Opera did "La Traviata" and City Opera gave "The Magic Flute." Therefore, I had to split my duties between the two companies. Good thing Cityop and the Met are literally a stone's throw from each other.

The Met's debutante in the role of Violetta did in fact, first appear in this country last year at Cityop, and in the same part. Soprano Mariana Niculescu was slated to open in "Rigoletto" later on, but since her Romanian compatriot, Eugenia Moldoveanu, fell ill, she was put on the boards early. Both singers have a good deal in common beside their nationality - Latin good looks, better-than-average acting ability, and voices flexible enough to handle the coloratura of Act I and the heavy lyricism of the rest. Moldoveanu is technically more adept, but Niculescu has the more arresting vocal sound. It's inclined to overgenerous vibration and veers noticeably sharp at times, but character is omnipresent. Her tonal production is erratic - exquisite pianissimos alternate with squalls - but Niculescu is a most affecting and intriguing singing actress, well-deserving of the attention she has inspired since her first appearances here.

Bergonzi's Return

Tenor Carlo Bergonzi returned to the Met as Alfredo and, although his actions still resemble those of a trained seal, his singing was full of the aristocratic fervor happily associated with him. He was, moreover, in unusually good voice. Mario Sereni substituting as Papa Germont for Ingvar Wixell was his usual inimitable self. A special salute to Ann Florio, who did her fellow choristers proud in the role of Annina.



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