• I love opera, bluegrass, burger joints and fictional detectives. Mostly, but not always, in that order. Formerly of Dunedin, formerly of Sydney, now travelling the world with the tenor in my life (Stuart Skelton) and blogging as I go.
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Friday, January 16, 2009



I think you neglected to mention the standing ovation that Miss Halloran received at the opera house for her performance on Wednesday night. I'm not sure if we could have been at the same performance! I did not once hear this Butterfly sound "ragged". And Butterfly should be young and bright and fervent. It is only in Act 3 that the tragedy unfolds. I am sure Ms Halloran deserves higher praise, having made an audience who started the evening mourning the loss of Miss Barker, rise to their feet at her final bow.


I did mention the ovation, which took me by (pleasant) surprise. I was ready to stand after her first Butterfly (on the 6th) but alas, it didn't happen, so I'm glad she got her dues after all.
My "ragged" comment was actually about her performance on the 9th, and maybe in my efforts to be concise, I've been unfair, but she did just sound a bit exhausted to me. Wednesday's was much shinier, but maybe the sheer force of her first performance just means the others pale in comparison. I don't know. I was exhausted too at that Friday performance, for reasons too ridiculous to go into. And I cried like a baby.
And look, yes, of course Antoinette deserves higher praise, but I've lavished quite a lot of it on her in other posts, so she's hardly been neglected. More than a year later, I still wax lyrical about her Stella (in Streetcar) to anyone who'll listen (and many who won't) and I've written several pieces in rapturous tribute since then, too. Maybe I've been uncharacteristically subdued above, but fear not, I'm still in the fan club.


Sarah -

You are perhaps quite qualified to answer a question about seating in the Opera Theatre. I notice the ticket you purchased is C12; is there any obstructed viewing from here? I am booking for Peter Grimes in October and cannot decide between C reserve and A reserve. I realise it would be acoustically beautiful to sit in row C but I am taking someone less musically inclined and I hate to think half the stage would be missing!!


Row C in the stalls is excellent. The only issue is that you won't be able to see the surtitles. If you're sitting right at one end or the other, you might miss a tiny bit of action if the set extends into the wings, but nothing of consequence - I think the most I've missed at the end of Row C was Emilia Marty getting out of bed. You only risk half the stage being missing if you go for a loge - if you're in the stalls, you're safe, just stay in front of the overhang or you won't hear much.


Grimes is in English anyway.


This is true!

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