This reviewer was not familiar at all with 'Abendempfindung' before seeing this production, and while it doesn't contain some of the best music I've heard it still makes for pleasant listening with an interesting stage-play-like story.
Dating from 2006 as part of the "Mozart 22" series, an interesting milestone series with some gems like 'Apollo and Hyacinthus', 'Idomeneo', 'Mitridate', 'Il Re Pastore' and 'La Finta Giardiniera' this Salzburg production of 'Abendempfindung' is frustratingly disappointing.
While not as dull as, 'Lo Sposo Deluso', and 'L'Oca del Cairo' (also directed by Joachim Schloemer), and not quite terrible enough to be one of the worst of the series like 'Ascanio in Alba' and 'Die Entfuhrung Aus Dem Serail', this has good things but also some really big debits that just ruin the experience.
Are there good things? Yes actually. Marianne Hammre proves to be a great actress, as well as beautiful, and delivers her dialogue with great command and confidence. The music is beautifully performed by the chamber orchestra and conducted with good style and sensitivity.
The tree artists on stage are also very good. Graham Smith dances with great flexibility and with grace, you just wish he had better choreography to work with, technically accomplished but rather routine for my tastes.
On the other hand, Ann Murray this reviewer has heard and seen better from. Here she sounds worn and tired a lot of the time. There are times when the visuals are appealing, but others when it looks rather static, with the dancing in underwear getting old after a while.
But Schloemer's stage direction turned out to be the weakest aspect. Most of the time it just doesn't engage, concentrating mainly on personal experiences and his personality, it does the unacceptable and not only doesn't do anything for the music but forgets about it also, if not as badly it did with his 'Lo Sposo Deluso' and 'L'Oca del Cairo'. Only the image of Murray perched on a staircase really evoked any kind of emotion from me.
So overall, not irredeemable but rather frustrating. 4/10 Bethany Cox
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