Monday, March 14, 2011

Two Opposing Views of Dolora Zajick in MET "Spades"

Ms. Zajick in Tchaikovsky's Queen of Spades
Photo: Marty Sohl/The Metropolitan Opera)
"Though the countess is at the dramatic center of the opera, the role does not involve much singing. To have the powerhouse mezzo-soprano Dolora Zajick in the part was luxury casting. Staying true to the character and the music Ms. Zajick reined in her voice and acted with aching vulnerability, especially in the poignant scene in which, after a ball, the countess sings herself to sleep with the strains of a romantic song from her youth." - Anthony Tommasini, The New York Times

(Photo: Sara Krulwich/New York Times)
"The biggest disappointment, though, was mezzo Dolora Zajick in the spooky title role. The scene where the countess dozes off while crooning a sentimental song from her youth can evoke eerie nostalgia and loss with only a wisp of voice. Here, Zajick uncorked her sumptuous mezzo as if to launch into "God Bless America." - James Jorden, New York Post

Both agree, however, that Peter Mattei's portayal of Yeletsky wins for best performance. [Source, Source]

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