May 9th, 2019

critic

Dialogues des Carmélites


I meant to listen to the first night of Dialogues of the Carmelites on Friday but forgot until Saturday morning. After seeing it tonight, I thought it might have been better to miss. Not that it’s unfamiliar, but it seems better to let its power catch you a little unaware. The pulse and flow of it are so natural, and here so well-managed by YNS, that the rest of my sentence has disappeared. The orchestra—on their “off” night in the middle of the last Ring Cycle—was superb as always, and the well-aged John Dexter production does maximal work with minimal materials. The whole thing is essentially built of shadow and light; there’s just enough physical production to allow the work a space.

Anyway, a favorite, one that doesn’t come around often, and a good end to the season. In HD on Saturday, worth a trip to the theatre at noon, or at least catching on PBS later. In all its many years, I don’t think this production (which is fantastic and much-loved) has ever been filmed (ETA: should have checked...1987 telecast). I know I’ll plan to listen (and also to hear the real season finale, Götterdämmerung, Saturday night).