Macbeth and the darkness
Giuseppe Verdi: Macbeth
Carlos Álvarez (Macbeth), Paoletta Marrocu (Lady Macbeth), Aquiles Machado (Macduff), Guillermo Orozco (Malcolm), Carlo Colombara (Banquo). Orchestra and Chorus of the Teatro Real, Jesus Lopez Cobos (Musical Conductor), Antonio Fauró (Chorus Conductor), Gerardo Vera (Stage Director).
The Verdi's first Shakespearean adaptation, released in 1847, arrived at Madrid's Teatro Real Season, performed in the version that the Italian composer made in 1865, in a co-production with the Asociación Bilbaína de Amigos de la Ópera. The strength of Carlos Alvarez and Paoletta Marrocu, in the paper of the mythical couple, together with the charm of Aquiles Machado in the role of the loyal Macduff, gathered the approval of the public attending at the Teatro Real in a production where Gerardo Vera, current director of the National Dramatic Center, debuted in the Real as stage director. Vera´s version, faithful to the dark and shady colors with which Verdi draws his pentagram, transported the scene from the Scottish castle to a World War I bunker, fact not approved by a part of the Madrid public who did not doubt to openly disapprove it. Also the musical director, Jesus Lopez Cobos, made debut in this opera, the only one from the Italian composer that he had never conducted. Lopez Cobos followed, as he had announced, the detailed annotations that Verdi left in the score, and collected with it the recognition of the audience. He obtained a pleasing and powerful sound from the Symphonic while was gradually increasing the tension after an anodyne first act. Antonio Fauró made a good work with the choir, who sounded rounder than other times.
A few hours after receiving the National Prize of Interpretation, the baritone Carlos Alvarez, returning to a role in which he is already a veteran, was impressive in the voice and admirable in his obsession to deep in the psychology of the character to be convincing in scene. With warm voice, Alvarez dictated an authentic lesson of song in "Mi if affaccia pugnal" and in the duo with Lady Macbeth, exhibiting consistency in the medium voice and recreating in the shades. The baritone was enriching the interpretation throughout the performance to culminate his role with the "Pieta Aryan, rispetto, amore" of the last act, sung with deep expressiveness and inexhaustible fan of vocal resources.
Paoletta Marrocu incarnated the ambitious Lady Macbeth with a great perspicuity, but sometimes her voice was ineffective to characterize the terrible role. The public wrapped with special affection to Aquiles Machado, a Macduff with a voice of wide center. Carlo Colombara fulfilled between the dignity and certain monotony, caused partly by his somewhat baritonal timbre. One of the keys of the spectacle was the choir of witches, almost a main character, that moved through the stage - in this occasion dark until the drop curtain, instead of red- as an esoteric and strange presence around a kettle of conspiracies insinuating the end of the protagonists.