Wednesday, November 23, 2022
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Opera San José’s West Facet Story


West-side-story-opera-san-jose-2022-1* Notes *
West Facet Story (Act I pictured, {photograph} by David Allen) opened at Opera San José final evening in a smooth and efficient manufacturing from director Crystal Manich. It was fantastic to listen to Leonard Bernstein’s music reside with a recent, youthful forged.

Conductor Christopher James Ray saved the orchestra and singers collectively, although it may have been bolder and crisper. The drama definitely exuded from the stage, and there was a lot magnificence within the singing and dancing.

Scenic designer Steven C. Kemp’s dynamic set labored very properly, the scenes seamlessly modified and I appreciated seeing the completely different rooms from completely different angles. It was all fairly intelligent and impressively quiet.

The gifted forged is a mixture of opera singers, musical theater performers, and dancers. At occasions I felt a bit disoriented from the distinction in singing model and the place the sound was coming from, as microphones are used, since it’s a musical, in spite of everything. Rival baritones Antony Sanchez (Bernardo) and Trevor Martin (Riff) clearly come from the musical theater world, they each moved so effortlessly. Sanchez is a very high quality dancer and Martin has a beautiful, gentle sound. On the opera singer aspect we had tenor Jared V. Esguerra as Chino and baritone Philip Skinner as Doc. We did not get to listen to that a lot of their sturdy voices, however they ably and sensitively acted their roles.

I very a lot appreciated soprano Natalia Santaliz because the soloist in “Someplace.” Her delicate voice singing above the lovers was ethereal and otherworldly.

The ensembles had lots of spirit. Mezzo-soprano Natalie Rose Havens is a cheeky Anita, she lead the Shark women in “America” and performed off soprano Christine Capsuto-Shulman as Rosalia. Havens was in a position to present the nuances of her character very clearly, she was utterly convincing. She has a splendid, wealthy voice as properly.

The Jets had been entertaining in “Gee, Officer Krupke,” Jawan Jenkins is endearing as Motion. It was all of the extra disturbing when these similar performers harass Anita at Doc’s just a bit later. The central issues of the piece really feel so intractable and sensible.

West-side-story-opera-san-jose-2022-2The leads (pictured, {photograph} by David Allen) are each highly effective singers. Soprano Teresa Castillo is good as Maria, she sings with readability and her duet with Anita in Act II, “A Boy Like That/I Have a Love” was transferring. The enchantment of tenor Noah Stewart as Tony was simple, his resonant tones and tender boyishness had been good for “Maria” and “Tonight.”

* Tattling *
The viewers was enthusiastic. Most individuals did hold their masks on as requested. I did see somebody in Row G utilizing her iPhone originally of Act II. I additionally famous some digital noise, however nothing too near me.

As I used to be turning the pages of this system, I used to be stunned to see that one of many semi-finalists of the Irene Dalis Vocal Competitors this yr is from Ürümqi. I not often see Chinese language ethnic minorities like myself in an opera program, so this was notable for me. It makes me very curious to listen to soprano Nina Mutalifu when she competes on Wednesday, Might 18.

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