A few days ago
i visited the local opera. I listened to “Tosca” written by Giacomo Puccini. During the first act I were in danger to fall to sleep, because the story starts confusing and as a listener you have to be very attentive to follow. But at the end of the first act, when the way to the conflict is shown, my attention was catched with ease. Then during the second act the conflict culminates as Toscas lover Cavaradossi is catched by the police. The chief of the police, Scarpia, tries to blackmail Tosca. She shall spend a night of love with him to save Cavaradossi. But Tosca kills Scarpia. Before Scarpia had given the command to save Tosca’s lover but he has fooled her. In the third act Tosca has to realise this and also Cavaradossi is killed. And Tosca kills herself. You see there are a lot of killings in this bloody opera and because of the brutal story you could imagine Romero as a good director for it. So i critizise the lack of blood in the production. After Cavaradossi is brutally tortured he gets only one single drop of blood on his forehead. And after Scarpia is stabbed to death he also not looses the juice of life, but his life of course. If I would be the director I would splatter tons of blood all over the stage to show the real pain and suffering of the protagonists. Basing upon the elements of comedy in some parts of the dialogues you could also interpretate the libretto as a tragic comedy. Or you can show it as an brutal nightmare. But you have to decide and not to hang between the extrems.
Musically I were very impressed by the singers and the music, which changes between romantic and impressionistic parts developing a very personal style. I think Puccini is the italian composer, which is mostly comparable to Wagner, because he is also creating long dramatic curves seldomly interrupted by closed parts. Puccini arranges brillantly and i were surprised sometimes by the use of organ or celesta, or a cello-quartet or the use of tubular-bells. He defines a very unique style of creating melodies, but i can not explain, what is so unique.
All in all it was a very impressive evening.