La Cieca’s spy L’incredibile, who has only moments ago slunk home from the Met’s Traviata dress rehearsal, predicts a triumph for Angela Gheorghiu as Violetta. “The most beautiful soprano to sing the role here since Anna Moffo,” L’incredibile exults, though he adds reservations about the carrying power of Gheorgiu’s “veiled” voice and the “frequent disagreements” about tempo between the diva and maestro Marco Armiliato.
New attire for Ms. Gheorghiu includes a flowing “oriental” robe in a deep rose silk for the first act (“think Adriana’s first entrance,” L’inc explains) which the soprano strips off to perform “Sempre libera” in corset and petticoat. (Apparently this was The Zef‘s original concept, but for whatever reason it was ditched when this production was introduced back in 1998.)
The spy, though closely questioned, would not commit to an opinion regarding tenor Jonas Kaufmann, since he marked “the entire opera.” Kaufmann does, however, appear to be planning on interpolating high C’s into the first act finale and at the end of his cabaletta. Anthony Michaels-Moore (Germont) boasts “the loudest voice in the cast, plus he sings directly out into the house the whole time.” Incredibile, ma vero! Oh, La Cieca can hardly wait! (In the meantime, she and you can bone up on Gheorghiu 101 in this archive.)