Definitely has some good things, but fails to ignite as a whole
La Vie Parisienne is a perfectly charming work, I love the humour and the music is gorgeous. This production from 1991 is far from a bad one, but it just seemed lacking to me. It does have its good points. The costumes are lovely and the video directing is unobtrusive. The orchestral playing at least play with beauty of tone and style, the conducting is efficient and the chorus at least blend well. Of the cast, the one who fared best was Helene Delavault, she has a wonderful stage presence and sings beguilingly and stylish. Isabelle Mavin is also a standout as Gabrielle as is Claire Wauthion. Now for the debits. The sets are rather bare, and the staging is often humourless and sparse. I do agree that the chorus is too small for a stage as large as the one here. And sadly, some of the performances don't work. Jean-Francois Sivadier sings with nice tone and technique, but looks as though he is in pain a lot of the time. Jacques Verzier is a little better but is still rather bland. Jean Yves Chatelais also has a pleasant voice but is too melancholic, I do understand that he was trying to give the Baron subtlety, but I feel that the subtlety was taken too far. Overall, not a bad production but rather mediocre. 6/10 Bethany Cox
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