by Giuseppe Verdi
24, 27, & 30 May & 3, 6, 10, 13, 15, & 18(mat) June 2011
Macbeth from the Royal Opera House will be screened at some movie theatres in the United Kingdom, United States, Australia, and a few other countries on June 13, 2011.
"Lady Loudmyla begins her reign," Intermezzo
Barry Millington, thisislondon.co.uk, 3 stars"This revival is worth catching, then, for Pappano's conducting and Monastyrska's Lady Macbeth alone, and Keenlyside brings all the qualities one expects to the title role. Musically there are some excellent things; as theatre, however, it's hardly satisfying."--Hugo Shirley, MusicalCriticism.com, 3.5 stars
George Hall, thestage.co.uk
David Karlin, Bachtrack
Stephen Jay-Taylor, Opera Britannia, 3.5 stars
"Despite high expectations for his debut, Simon Keenlyside, in the plum role in Verdi's Macbeth . . . was a slight disappointment at the Royal Opera House last night. Opera-goers who disseminated their thoughts after the play said he wasn't as evoking as he should've been."--Danny Lee, PinkPaper
Rupert Christiansen, telegraph.co.uk, 3 stars
Simon Collings, oxfordtimes.co.uk
I went to Newport, Rhode Island, on June 13, 2011, to see the broadcast to movie theatres of the Royal Opera's performance of Verdi's Macbeth. I thought it was OK, but not a must-see performance. I liked Simon Keenlyside in the title role and Liudmyla Monastyrska as Lady Macbeth, but the rest of the cast was so-so, below the level of what one would normally hear in New York or even Montreal. Monastyrska's sound is pleasant but with no great dramatic nuance.
The witches' costumes with red turbans were interesting. The rest of the costumes were an acceptable but boring mishmash, many of the men's tops inspired by karate outfits. On the whole I didn't like the sets and props, to the extent that there were any. A water faucet, at the right of the stage, was an annoying gimmick that got tired really soon. A sort of gilded cage, a little stage with gold lattice work on three sides, was used in some scenes. It looked like something one might see in a sordid barroom that offers amateur striptease one night a week. The Macbeths have the sort of bedspreads one can buy in a department store. One can find a lot of fault with the stage direction. Imaginary children of the Macbeths, not called for by the libretto, were a distraction that added nothing.
Simon Keenlyside was wearing the arm bands that he has been wearing in recent weeks. His singing seemed to get better as the opera progressed. I'm not sure whether his singing was improving or whether the sound engineers were learning as they were going along. I think it may be the latter, since at first the orchestra seemed much louder than the singers, except for Monastyrska who managed to sound loud even though the chorus and the other soloists often sounded muffled, more so toward the beginning than as the opera progressed. Have the sound engineers never done this sort of thing before, that they have to learn while doing?