I adore opera and I adore Verdi's Otello. While I prefer the Zeffirelli film, the 1974 film and 1992 production over this production, there is much to like here. I personally found the minimalist stage design and staging effective, especially in the final act, though I would have liked a more foreboding setting for Iago's Credo. It also helps that the lighting is very imaginative throughout, of this particular asset the most effective was Desdemona's Ave Maria. Zubin Mehta's conducting is lively, while bringing out the poignancy of the Willow Song and the menace of the Credo, and the orchestra play wonderfully under him. The principal singing is excellent. Vladmir Goulandzine does very well with the difficult role of Otello- by far the most demanding and complex of the Verdi tenor roles-, Barbara Frittoli's dramatic intensity and vocal power has grown since the 2001 production which was great to see because here I found her more believable especially in the Willow Song and Carlo Guelfi is a vocally assured and suitably conniving Iago. All in all, surprisingly very well done. 9/10 Bethany Cox
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