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Il Viaggio a Reims review at Teatro Rossini Pesaro Italy

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How odd that the director who torpedoed the chances of Rossini’s L’Equivoco Stravagante should so cleverly update Il Viaggio to a contemporary spa setting which enables the young singers cast from the Accademia Rossiniana fully to deploy their talents.

Emilio Sagi’s staging, with ongoing modifications, has done the trick now for eight years. It remains a high point of the annual festival, not least because the youngsters’ technical prowess and seemingly innate feel for the composer’s stylistic demands puts to shame many an international star.

This year’s cast gave an enviable display of ensemble acting which would grace any major opera house. Never was there a lapse in concentration, neither in their responses to dramatic events, nor in their scrupulous concern for musical values.

They were undoubtedly helped by the young Russian conductor Denis Vlasenko, making his festival debut. His command of Rossinian style is formidable. He has a refined ear for instrumental textures and a sure sense of architecture. He paced the score admirably, was selfless in support of the singers.

Notable amongst this year’s talented crop were Cristina Obregon, whose level-headed Corrina combined vocal purity with deftly underplayed comedic touches. Two outstanding tenors fearlessly traversed the staves, Yijie Shi’s Tigger-like Cavalier Belfiore contrasting well with Alexey Kudrya’s impassioned Conte di Libenskopf – he’d be a terrific Lensky.

Marco Filippo Romano’s firm-toned Don Profondo was in the finest traditions of Italian buffo performance. Tamara Klivadenko brought to her toping Marchesa Melibea a warm mezzo and a sly wit.

Production Information

Teatro Rossini, Pesaro, Italy, August 15, 18

Composer
Gioachino Rossini
Director
Emilio Sagi
Producer
Rossini Opera Festival
Cast includes
Cristina Obregon, Yijie Shi, Alexei Kudrya, Marco Filippo Romano
Running time
3hrs

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