Don Giovanni at the LA Opera

12:28:00 PM

The new season is here for the LA Opera and Placido Domingo is blowing everyone out of the water with expectancy. I don't about you, but I have never been one to be disappointed at the Opera. Going in the atmosphere of the place is positively mythical and one can't help but pretend and hope, if just for a moment, that you have been transported back into the time of Mozart, Bach, and Beethoven. Just the mere presence of the stage curtain covering the scenes to our dreams, builds on the sheer burning excitements radiating and humming underneath the top layer of your skin. 

The curtain was stunning this time around, decorated in midnight blue, covered in shadows of silvery white light that mimicked clouds in a summer sky. There was also a crescent moon cast from somewhere in the heavenly ceiling of the Dorthy Chandler, all complete with a few delicate twinkle lights to looks like stars. 

The opera we saw was the infamous Mozart's Don Giovanni. I haven't seen this opera since I was a kid and even then it made me shudder with laughter and wonder. To see Placido Domingo's rendition of the classic masterpiece was a treat. Not only were we given a slightly more comical version with the ingenious abilities of Leporello played by David Bizic. He was such a fantastic comical character and I couldn't keep myself from laughing. With the addition of Don Giovanni played by Illdebrando D'Archangelo, the dynamic duo stole the show.
Don Giovanni Cast La Opera Season 2012-13
I will say that for this production I was more pleased with the role of men than I was with the women. Maybe it was the acting and stage direction from Domingo himself that threw me, but I wanted more and less from them. I thought of the "less is more" saying when I saw Donna Anna throw her arms to and fro and Donna Elvira constantly back into walls recoiling from herself and from Don Giovanni. For Donna Anna, she was good and had a lovely voice, but I didn't feel she brought the beauty and angelic tonality to the character. Donna Elvira was too coquettish and pathetic for my taste; she is supposed to be spunky and have a specific relationship with Don Giovanni that made her special to him in some way. I just didn't see the spunkiness and the interaction with Giovanni that I would have liked; I felt sorrier for her than I'm supposed to and she's not, in my mind, supposed to make me roll my eyes and think 'Get over it and move on girlie he's done with you'--but I did. She wasn't dainty, young and carefree looking either. Don't get me wrong here because I know that looks are not supposed to matter in most professions but in this case, it does. Don Giovanni and Donna Elvira didn't go well together, he's the embodiment of sex and charm but she seemed to old, frail and pathetic. Zerlina, it goes a ways to mention that she was perfect, a little slutty and a little charming. She was a perfect fit for the role and I enjoyed her performance immensely.

The opera as a whole was very satisfying, it's just a matter of taking a different interpretation to heart. If you have not been to the opera and seen a production of Placido Domingo's, do yourself a favor and buy tickets. The best part is that if you're a student, like myself, you can get your hands on some student rush tickets for around $25 a piece in the founders circle. We had a fantastic view. Well done LA Opera. 

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