[Met Performance] CID:233070

Der Rosenkavalier
Metropolitan Opera House, Fri, March 16, 1973

Debut : Yvonne Minton, Michael McClain, Elvira Green, Cecil Baker, Richard Firmin

Der Rosenkavalier (229)
Richard Strauss | Hugo von Hofmannsthal
Yvonne Minton [Debut]

Princess von Werdenberg (Marschallin)
Leonie Rysanek

Baron Ochs
Walter Berry

Judith Blegen

Morley Meredith

Marcia Baldwin

Andrea Velis

Italian Singer
Franco Tagliavini

Carlotta Ordassy

Michael McClain [Debut]

Princess' Major-domo
Gabor Carelli

Mary Fercana

Joyce Olson

Elvira Green [Debut]

Elizabeth Anguish

Animal Vendor
Cecil Baker [Debut]

Harry Jones

Andrij Dobriansky

John Trehy

Richard Firmin [Debut]

Peter Sliker

Lou Marcella

Edward Ghazal

Faninal's Major-domo
Nico Castel

Charles Anthony

Police Commissioner
Richard Best

Christoph Von Dohnányi

Nathaniel Merrill

Robert O'Hearn

Der Rosenkavalier received seven performances this season.

Review 1:

Review of Ron Eyer in the Daily News

Minton Hit in Mixed-Up Role at Met

Making her debut with the company, Australian Yvonne Minton is the latest mezzo-soprano to tackle the bisexuality of Octavian in the Metropolitan Opera's "Der Rosenkavalier," and she scored a solid, if not spectacular, success in the boy-girl role. Octavian is not really bisexual at all, of course. In the baroque sophistication of poet von Hofmannsthal and composer Strauss, which seems naive amid today's frank complexities of sexuality, she is simply a girl who plays a boy who, in turn, plays a girl. But this can give no end of trouble to an opera singer. First of all, she must be able to sing the occasionally high-lying music of Octavian and fit in the surpassingly beautiful female trio and duet that end the opera. Then she must (sometimes) look and act like a young man. Other times she must look like a young man acting like a young girl. Quite an assignment.

Warm and Relaxed Voice

Miss Minton had no problems in the vocal department Friday night. Her voice is warm and relaxed and she had no trouble holding her own against Leonie Rysanek's Marschallin, Judith Blegen's Sophie or Walter Berry's Baron Ochs. She doesn't get much in the way of solos, but what she did have, as in the scene of the presentation of the silver rose, was most grateful to the ear. Her chiseled features gave her a good masculine appearance, though her military uniform didn't seem to fit too well. And thankfully, she didn't clown too much in trying make her boy characterization act like a girl in seducing old Baron Ochs.

She was an ornament to a cast including others new to the Met production. Walter Berry was a youngish and very exuberant Baron Ochs who managed some of the bass tones of the part remarkably well for a baritone. Judith Blegen brought real vocal dimension and a pretty pout to the usually vacuous role of Sophie. And Franco Tagliavini did a good imitation of Caruso (intentionally, one hopes) as the Singer.

New, too, was Christoph von Dohnanyi at the conductor's desk. He savored every phrase, but his pace was so leisurely that the opera at times seemed to be in slow motion and he didn't get the curtain down until after midnight. Leonie Rysanek grows steadily in the resplendent part of the Marschallin. She is as beautiful to look at as to listen to, and she has added some deft bits of acting that make her bittersweet performance ever more poignant.

Photograph of Judith Blegen as Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier by Louis Mélançon/Metropolitan Opera.

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