Praise for Munich’s new Ballo in maschera: “A formidable vocal feast” (Bayerische Staatszeitung). “The singers sent the audience into raptures (Südwestpresse). “A total triumph” (La Razón). “This production shows what a utopia opera can be” (Abendzeitung).
The Bavarian State Opera’s former music director Zubin Mehta returned to the fabled house (where his image in bronze adorns one of the foyers) to celebrate his 80th birthday conducting Verdi’s middle-period masterpiece for the first time in a staged production. His remarkable cast includes soprano Anja Harteros singing Amelia for the first time and “filling every note with Verdian intensity”, tenor Piotr Beczala as a “visually and vocally dashing Riccardo” and George Petean as an “exemplary” Renato (Neue Musikzeitung).
In director Johannes Erath’s musically super-sensitive new production, this historically-based tale of illicit love, conspiracy and betrayal unfolds in a surrealistic, shadowy setting transformed by lighting and projections. Special praise was showered by the enthusiastic critics on Maestro Mehta, who “creates concentrated musical connections, miraculously guiding his orchestra and unsurpassable voices the way a thermal lifts a paraglider [...] Musically the performance was a dream” (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung).