Saturday, June 21, 2008
Angela You Lucky Girl!
Major concerts have to be attended. Beatles, Woodstock, Mad Dogs and Englishmen, The Concert for Bangladesh..........on and on in my history of "yes, I was there" concert lists.........and so presented with the possibility of seeing and hearing Roberto Alagna and his most gracious wife, diva Angela Georghiu, at an outdoor, under the stars venue, was not to be shrugged off.
For this did I trek by subway, thank you very much, to Prospect Park, with a bit of trepidation, but a goal firmly in place. We close the shop at 7 in the evening, so giving myself just a scant hour left me worried. But it's Brooklyn, and maybe no one will find it, so it won't be millions and millions of rushing crowds, blanket and wine bottles in hand.
Taking the F train from 23rd Street, an adventure unto itself, and leaving everything to the opera gods, was the first part. The second part was the stream of happy people strolling into the park entrance, fenced, guarded by a relaxed police force, on and off their horses.
Have I mentioned any hats yet? Maybe because there were none to be seen. Hang on.
The third part was finding a spot........and with huge speakers and monitors set up along the perimeter of the field, the choices were many. None close to the stage, but still many.
The best part was the concert: Roberto Alagna, the Rock Star of Opera, and Angela Georghiu, together... a magnificent occasion in itself. The Met orchestra and the chorus were on hand to provide the wall of sound, and the operatic duo dove into their performances with obvious glee. The program, from orchestration to solos, was planned to provide enough snippets of familiarity to make the novices in the audience feel at home. Mr. and Mrs. Alagna behaved with coquettish charm, giving their delivery more romance, and having fun with the crowd's response. They danced, they kissed, they hugged, and boy, did they sing. For those of us familiar with full voice arias, the difference was interesting. Singing out of doors, with microphones is a talent unto itself.
Wonderful experience; Peter Gelb is so smart.
So, hats......... there were some, to be sure...practical no-nonsense hats for the park. I sigh in despondency.......my mission is huge, I know. Hatting the heads of the universe is a tough job, but I'm up to it, to be sure.
P.S. Mrs. Alagna, please let me make you a little something for the hair. Anytime, I'm at your service.