Adriana Lecouvreur_Royal Opera House London_Gheorhgiu/Kaufmann_22.11.2010

Adriana Lecouvreur - Angela Gheorghiu
Maurizio - Jonas Kaufmann
Principessa de Buillon - Michaela Schuster
Michonnet - Alessandro Corbelli
Royal Opera House Orchestra and Chorus
Conductor - Mark Elder
Director - David McVicar
Adriana L, the sad story of an actress told with lots and lots of details. Very ingenious idea of using theatre in a theatre concept. This way you can see what’s both the stage and behind the stage. One particular moment is very interesting. At the beginning you see the backstage. Then Adriana has to go on stage to deliver the monologue and the stage on stage rotates a little bit to the left. Michonnet comments everything and while he’s singing you can see the characters moving on the stage and miming the words, but from behind. I also find interesting the fact that you get to see Adriana dressing up for the performance. What seems to be a dress turns out to be made of at least 4 or 5 pieces. I didn’t know that. So, moving stage, people coming up and down the stairs, improvised rooms for actors moving to the left, details of the theatre from back then (see the stage lighting with candles), many different costumes, jewellery, Adriana dressing up… lots of movement for somebody who sees the production for the first time.
Be careful not to pay too much attention to the sets and forget about the voices and acting. So you’ll miss the first important arias, Adriana’s Io son l’umile ancella and Maurizio’s Dolcissima effigie. I have the habbit of noticing details on stage (some say it's good, some others, the opposite). And this time I got trapped.
Act 2 is less animated. Now we’re in a villa. It’s more about the lighting here. This act brought the first dramatic moment, the confrontation between Adriana and Principessa de Buillon. I considered it the highlight of the first part of the opera. Very intense, that kind of music that makes you jump off the chair. That was great! Only that it was also the end of the first part of the opera. After the interval the drama stops as there’s a party going on. Nice ballet (but read the libretto first to have an idea what it’s about, otherwise you’ll ask yourselves what’s with the golden apple). And then, back to drama. The long waited monologue that helps Adriana get revenged. Interval again.. and it was the second time I felt taken away from the atmosphere because of stage/costume changes.
I declare myself a fan of the fourth act. It gave me that this-is-it feeling. Butterflies in my stomach, some tears in the end. It was beautiful. I've been looking for that connection throughout the opera and that final duet and Adriana's death brought it. Quadruple doze of emotions added for the ending. First, Adriana dies, in the arms of Maurizio. Then he cries " morta, morta" (the effect should be devastating, and similar to "Mimi, Mimi" and "Manon"). Then the characters on the stage come to the edge, remove their hats and take a bow, as if saying "the show is over" and last but not least, the orchestra concludes in pianissimo. So, what do you think?
I was in my happy mood again, living up there on my private cloud. London.. ROH... Angela... Jonas... couldn't ask for more. But this is not over yet. Once is not enough. I knew the music but everything else was new to me. I'll go back soon.
And now, the photos. Taken during the curtain call and at the backstage door. Enjoy!

Bonaventura Bottone
Alessandro Corbelli
Maurizio Muraro
Michaela Schuster
Jonas Kaufmann

Angela Gheorghiu

Mark Elder

Dedication to somebody that wanted to be there really bad but couldn't make it. Sorry :( But we thought of you!


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