|Liverman, Lucà, Isiguen, Zaremba, and Thorn | photo credit Cory Weaver|
|Isiguen and Lucà | photo credit Cory Weaver|
|Zaremba, Lucà, Thorn , Guidi, and Liverman | photo credit Cory Weaver|
|Forni | photo credit Cory Weaver|
Deac Guidi excelled in the role of the Benoit, turning him from a crotchety landlord into a lovable and laughable buffoon. Damien Geter created a clueless and infatuated Alcindoro. Aaron Short spread a bright layer of joy as Parpignol, the toy vendor. Gregory Brumfield as the Custom House Officer and Anders Tobiason as the Sergeant showed the requisite gruffness for their characters.
Effective lighting by York Kennedy accented the huge painted backdrops provided by Seattle Opera evoked the Paris of the Nineteenth Century. They were complimented well by traditional costumes that were designed by Susan Memmott Allred for the Utah Symphony and Opera.
The street scene in front of Café Momus offered a swirl of colorful activity with the Portland Opera Chorus, a charming children’s chorus, and a small marching band taking turns in the spotlight.
Conductor George Manahan chose to keep the tempos brisk but was very attentive to any singer who wanted linger over a phrase. Here and there the orchestra got a tad too loud for the singers – with the exception of Liverman whose expressive and resilient baritone was stellar throughout the performance.
Attendance at the Keller seemed to be a little down, which was dismaying since “La Bohème” is one of the best-loved operas ever written. Perhaps word about the fine singing will inspire more to come hear the final two performances on May 11 and 13.
|Photo credit Cory Weaver|