Teatro Colón: the Argentine audience applauded Plácido Domingo on a night when emotion prevailed

recitation of Placido Domingobaritone, with Maria Giuseppe Sirisoprano and the Stable orchestra of the Teatro Colón directed by Jordi Bernacer. Symphonic works by Giuseppe Verdi and Hector Berlioz and arias and opera scenes by Verdi, Umberto Giordano, Ambroise Thomas and Jules Massenet. Cycle great performers. Colon Theater. Next feature: Sunday 10, at 17:00, in favor of Ukrainian refugees (will have streaming away www.teatrocolon.org.ar, www.youtube.com/teatrocolontv, www.vivamoscultura.buenosaires.gob.arand can also be watched on a giant screen located in Plaza Germany, Raúl Scalabrini Ortiz 2602).

On Thursday night, audiences filled the Colón from stalls in heaven to express their love for Plácido Domingo, arguably one of the most accomplished, versatile and admirable opera singers of all time. With a story in tow that few, indeed no one, can exhibit, the great Spanish tenor, today, at the age of 81, became a baritone, entered the scene and the audience, standing up and shouting, applauded him while as vast as it is thunderous. It is not difficult to admit that those minutes dedicated to Domingo were a clear and heartfelt recognition to an exceptional singer who, moreover, on numerous occasions, has returned over and over again to Buenos Aires to generate unforgettable events. For all the recital that he was supposed to offer next, there was actually no personal performance, otherwise rather poor, that would have deserved such a more than understandable reception.

Plácido Domingo, soprano María José Siri and maestro Jordi Bernàcer, conducting the Stable Orchestra
Plácido Domingo, soprano María José Siri and maestro Jordi Bernàcer, conducting the Stable OrchestraCOLUMBUS PRESS THEATER / ARNALDO COLOMBAROLI.

The recital, from start to finish, was nothing more than an unattractive succession of openings, arias and opera scenes without any pretense of continuity beyond the nationality of the composers. The first part was Italian; the second, French (albeit with a Verdian ending). And although Domingo, after the initial impact, was losing vocal presence as the night progressed, and even when his appearances were understandably scarce for a singer of his age, the audience’s love and devotion to this artist are not. diminished or diminished in no time.

The concert began with a correct interpretation of the long overture by Sicilian Vespers, by Verdi. Trascartón, Domingo entered who, smiling, patient and even blissful, calmly took the tumult generated by his presence and, in a full voice and with that interpretative ability that clearly distinguished him from all the singers of his generation, presented “Enemy of the Fatherland” , from the opera Andrea Chenierby Giordano. The bitterness and disquiet of Gerard, the character who condemned Chenier, emerged in his interpretation and in the energy with which he recreated the character, although his voice is not that of a dramatic baritone with deep bass but that of a tenor who over the years has overshadowed him and made his record more serious. With interpretation and theatricality, Placido was able to replace what his singing cannot offer. After those four minutes, Domingo got his second standing ovation.

The “Jordanian Moment” was completed, first of all, with the dramatic bombast and the abundant vibratos that María José Siri impressed on “La mamma morta”, also by Andrea Chenier. Those with memories must remember Maria Callas’ record which, many years after her death, was central and impressive in the film. Philadelphia. Far from that intense Callas account, Siri suffered from sheer exaggeration. Without much need, then, to close this passage of the recital, Bernàcer conducted the “Intermezzo” by Fedoraalso by Umberto Giordano.

Before the concert, long lines of Plácido Domingo fans waiting for the tenor to autograph their programs
Before the concert, long lines of Plácido Domingo fans waiting for the tenor to autograph their programs

At the end of the first part, Domingo and Siri sang the scene of the second act of The Traviata in which Giorgio Germont comes to ask Violetta to break the relationship she has with her son. María José, with impeccable vocal fullness, continued with her vehemence and exaggeration, and Plácido, with a voice insufficient in range and density – essential for the irrefutable sacrifice Germont proposes – began to sound less convincing even if her theatricality did not. objections were admitted.

In the second part the pattern was repeated: a large orchestral piece at the beginning, the overture the corsair, by Berlioz; a very short aria from Placido, “O vin, dissipe la tristesse, de Fraction, by Ambroise Thomas; “Cry lreurz, me eyes”, from El Cid, by Massenet, for another dramatization with shocking highs by María José Siri; “Meditation”, from the work Thaïs, with an excellent solo performance by the violinist Oleg Pishenin, first violin of the orchestra; and, finally, a new Verdi duet for soprano and baritone, “Udiste? … Mira, d’acerbe lagrime” by The Troubadour, by Verdi, when Leonora begs the Count di Luna for the life of Manrico, already here with a considerable distance between the magnificence of María José’s song and that of Plácido. However, full ovation broke out for both singers. And then came the feast of the zarzuelera.

Sunday added unscheduled, as a sign of gratitude to the local public
Sunday added unscheduled, as a sign of gratitude to the local public “Volver” COLUMBUS PRESS THEATER / ARNALDO COLOMBAROLI.

Outside the program, with joy and enthusiasm generously scattered on the stage and in every corner of the theater, Domingo sang “Amor, vida de mi vida”, by Moreno-Torroba, Siri brought a ballad from the zarzuela carnationsby José Serrano and, despite the applause of the public including, the Spanish party ended with the famous duet “Me llamas, Rafaeliyo?”, taken from the opera The wild catby Manuel Pennella Moreno.

The cheers and cheers continued and Domingo wanted to greet each other with a tango. Two bandoneonists joined the orchestra, Nicolás Enrich and Horacio Romo, and a guitarist, Joaquín Molejón, and with his voice already very reduced and still, next to the conductor, Plácido sang “Volver”. Without treble and without bass, he forgot even the text of the last two lines of the second verse and resumed singing with the refrain. The audience went to show him their love and Domingo, a baritone who, as such, will not be remembered, received – as he deserves – bursts of good vibes from an audience that felt absolutely satisfied with the presence of a superior artist, someone which, for many decades, has brought only satisfaction.

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