October 8, 2013
West Bay Opera General Director José Luis Moscovich, conducting again after a hiatus forced by back trouble, is looking forward to the company's production of Puccini's Tosca:
This is the apex of verismo, so everything is about life-like detail and realistic drama onstage. We chose a traditional setting, but prominently enhanced with video projections.
It allows us to relish the fact that after the first three chords of the piece, we are suddenly in Rome.
And we're going all the way: We've even created a special sound design for the bells of Rome that open the third act, to go with the view of the city from the Castel Sant'Angelo.
Puccini serves up a roller coaster of a score, with tempo changes, rubatos and meter changes coming at you at a dizzying pace. It’s definitely a challenge to put together, but the result can be fantastic: A sound carpet that writhes and heaves with the action onstage.
We have the right cast, and the chorus is outdoing itself, so, we’ve been having lots of fun with it. I trust audiences will, as well.
Richard Harrell directs, Jean-François Revon is once again set designer for that postage-stamp of a stage (how does he do it?), Stacey Stofferahn makes her WBO debut in the title role, David Gustafson is Cavaradossi, and Philip Skinner Sings Scarpia.
Stofferahn, from Belgium, has been singing a wide range of roles in the U.S., her favorites being Violetta (La traviata), Mimì and Musetta (La bohème), Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), Fiordiligi (Così fan tutte), and Alice (Falstaff).