[Met Performance] CID:270020

La Forza del Destino
Metropolitan Opera House, Wed, September 22, 1982

La Forza del Destino (183)
Giuseppe Verdi | Francesco Maria Piave
Leona Mitchell

Don Alvaro
Giuseppe Giacomini

Don Carlo
Sherrill Milnes

Padre Guardiano
Bonaldo Giaiotti

Isola Jones

Fra Melitone
Gabriel Bacquier

Marquis de Calatrava
Richard Vernon

Jean Kraft

James Courtney

Andrea Velis

Russell Christopher

James Levine

John Dexter

Set Designer
Eugene Berman

Costume Designer
Peter J. Hall

Donald Mahler

Stage Director
David Sell

La Forza del Destino received sixteen performances this season.

Revival a gift of The LeVine Foundation, Detroit, Michigan

Review 1:

Review of Robert Kimball in the Daily News

Leona Mitchell scores in Met's 'La Forza'

Leona Mitchell, in her debut as Leonora, sang her way into the top echelons of Verdi heroines and into the hearts of the Metropolitan Opera audience the other night in the season's first performances of "La Forza del Destino." Her radiant voice soared rhapsodically and there was a special tenderness in her doom-drenched portrayal.

There is much more to praise about this brilliantly-sung "Forza," the company's first since 1977, and a good deal of the credit belongs to conductor James Levine, the Met's musical director. "Forza" is filled with great music, but it is a loose, sprawling, episodic, lengthy pageant that requires the kind of firmness and red-hot intensity that Levine bought to it from the pit. His command of the score was so sure that he was able to focus most of his attention on the stage and his cues were masterful.

And what a cast he assembled! Tenor Giuseppe Giacomini, as the Inca Prince Alvaro, who loves Leonora, rung the rafters with his spine-tingling solos. Baritone Sherrill Milnes, Leonora's vengeance-seeking brother Carlo, sang with his customary mastery. The two men were well matched in their duets of comradeship and confrontation. Gabriel Bacquier's hilarious, vibrant Melitone was very special, and Bonaldo Giaiotti's grave Padre Guardiano rose to heights in the closing pages of the tragedy. Isola Jones, saucy and alluring as the gypsy Preziosilla, had all kinds of vocal problems. The John Dexter/Eugene Berman production is a gloomy, yet serviceable, evocation of the inns, courtyards, cloisters and battlefields of 18th Century Spain and Italy.

"Forza" will be performed at the Met again tomorrow afternoon, Thursday evening and on several other occasions. Miss Mitchell can also be seen and heard in the new Luciano Pavarotti film "Yes, Giorgio" which opens today at the Ziegfeld Theater. Her opera career, which has already been a fine one, should blossom after such a splendid Leonora.

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