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Weber’s Der Freischütz from La Scala proves another iffy staging, directed by Matthias Hartmann. On film it seems very flat, consisting mainly of a black stage with neon lighting suggesting buildings and spaces. Perhaps in the house it provided more atmosphere. The costumes are gorgeous and detailed, a riff on traditional Bohemian outfits, but they are so unflattering. Poor Eva Liebau’s Annchen has to endure a massive bow of Minnie Mouse proportions for headgear, but her personality remains undimmed. Michael Köning and Julia Kleiter are world class as Max and Agathe, her ‘Leise, leise’ has great purity of tone and an even line. Günther Groissböck makes much of Kaspar and attempts to inject some physicality into an otherwise static production. In the pit, Myung-Whun Chung certainly provides a point of view, even if the staging lacks one; it is calm, clear and elegant, looking back to Weber’s Classical and opera comique antecedents as well as forwards to the outburst of Romanticism he heralds.

Francis Muzzu Read the full review on Agora Classica


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