Post Cards from the Edge Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor - 11 November 2017, 7:00 pm - Florida Grand Opera | Welcome to Fred’s Home Page

Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor - 11 November 2017, 7:00 pm - Florida Grand Opera

690x310 Lucia

First and foremost, Florida Grand Opera took the idea of minimalism to the extreme with set design for this production - it was a totally bare stage.  I can understand budget difficulities but why put on a Donizetti opera if you are not willing to produce an opera that begs for lavish stage design?  FGO states that the opera is a co-porduction with Houston Grand Opera, Teatro La Fenice and Opera Australia.  One of those companies, I’m sure, had significant sets available.

A second bone to pick, in my opinion, was the selection of Anna Christy’s role as Lucia.  I think it totally unfair to cast her in a role requiring the vocal range of a Donizetti opera.  Not everyone has the range to sing Donizetti.  She held her own with duets and other arias where she did not have to project over the orchestra nor produce the vocal histrionics of a mad woman.  However, in the more powerful scenes, she could not easily handle the range required.

Joshua Guerrero and Trevor Scheunemann were adequate in their roles of Edgardo and Enrico but when you consider the empty stage, it takes quite a voice to fill that space and the auditorium.  

The setting (or lack thereof) takes place in the Lammermoor hills of Scotland in the late 1600’s.  Enrico Ashton, head of the estate, is in trouble and he needs to marry off Lucia to Lord Auturo in order to preserve his influence with the king.

The problem is Lucia has fallen for Enrico’s enemy, Edgardo (a lot of family hating between them).  Edgardo informs Lucia he must go to France for a diplomatic matter and they pledge their undying love and consider themselves married in the eyes of God.

Enrico prevents letters from Edgardo from reaching Lucia and forges one to make Lucia think Edgardo has found another love.  Very reluctantly she agrees to marry Auturo.  She signs the marriage vows.

As the wedding takes place, Edgardo returns and accuses Lucia of infidelity.  He storms off.  During the wedding night, Lucia murders Arturo and the rest of the play  deals with Edgardo’s death scene after he learns the truth, that Lucia has been duped. The play ends as he stabs himself to be with Lucia.

This is my second production of Lucia di Lammermoor.  The first was in 2010 with, again, the Florida Grand Opera.  Opera World panned this production and the stage design was mostly rock formations of the Scotish hishlands.

The photograph is from the Arsht Center.

© Fred Searcy 2017