Monday, July 04, 2016

Wonderful Werther with Joyce

Joyce takes great selfies
Yesterday to a completely wonderful performance of Werther at Covent Garden starring Joyce DiDonato and Vittorio Grigolo. Musically, and in terms of acting, it is hard to imagine that there could have been a better performance.

I was very tired after the Round the Island race the previous day but the performance was utterly gripping, and the climax was some of the most heart-rending opera I have ever heard. Joyce inhabits the role so convincingly and sings so expressively - from ppp to fff and with the whole gamut of emotions.

Vittorio Grigolo was also superb, and Jonaan Summers made an excellent father. The revelation of the performance was Heather Engebretson who played Sophie the younger sister. She's pint-sized but a bundle of energy with a superb voice that can fill Covent Garden. She'd doing a lot of work in Germany (Wiesbade, Hamburg) catch her if you can. And I hope she'll do a Wigmore soon!

It occurred to me that Joyce is a bit like Judi Dench - people always perform a notch or two better when they perform with her. She liked the comparison.

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