Jonathan Pell, Artistic Director, Berlin Part IV

by Megan Meister

End of Act I of Mozart’s IDOMENEO at Berlin’s Komische Oper

Last night was a performance of Mozart’s IDOMENEO at Berlin’s Komische Oper.  It was sad to see so few people in the audience—I would guess that there were only around 250 people in attendance.

It was a stark, modern production with a unit set consisting of a steep curved rake of black planks with a small irregularly shaped pool of water in the center.  At the end of the opera, somewhat predictably, the character of “Elettra” drowned herself in this shallow pond.

The chorus, in street clothes, stormed on and off carrying metal chairs that were strewn around the stage from time to time while other choristers crawled around the set throughout the evening.

Veteran tenor Rainer Trost sang very well in a touching performance of the title role.   In this production, “Idomeneo” is a doddering, broken old man, clutching a model sail boat and muttering to himself all night long.  The rest of the cast was solid, with a standout performance by mezzo-soprano Susanne Kreusch as “Idamante.”

As odd as this production might sound, it was very effective and really told the story clearly and affectingly.

 

Curtain call from a production of IDOMENEO at Berlin’s Komische Oper

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