Thursday, March 23, 2006

Bellini's Norma

Please indulge while I interrupt my dry attempts at political insight for something closer to my heart!

I'm too tired to attempt anything resembling a proper review, but if you live in Toronto, go see Norma. It's a great show, a tight two-act bel canto masterpiece that shows off Bellini's genius and points towards the paths taken later on by Verdi and Wagner, who both cite Bellini as an influence.

The production doesn't bog down, and the singing is great. It's worth the price of admission just to hear June Anderson skip up and down the scales in some of the coloratura passages with a delicacy and clarity one isn't used to hearing at the Canadian Opera Company.

Torontonians are a clap-happy lot when it comes to the opera, but she and the rest of the cast deserved it in this case. So Torontonians, go support your local big-box cultural institution and see Norma!

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