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Carmen or Zauberflöte

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Burnley, United...
Destination Expert
for Vienna
posts: 8,735
reviews: 75
Carmen or Zauberflöte

Got a choice of Carmen at the Volksoper or Zauberflöte at the Staatsoper when we are over in May. Anyone seen either (or both) production and have any comment? Love both operas so it's down to the staging.

Oxford, UK
Destination Expert
for Salzburg
posts: 1,736
reviews: 10
1. Re: Carmen or Zauberflöte

I've seen ZF once at the Staatsoper and enjoyed it very much. I can't remember a whole lot about the production - it was one of those bare ones with a slopey white floor and not a lot else (as per the picture on the SO website), but the singing was very good. The VO production of ZF was visually more spectacular, but the SO one was musically good (sometimes I, in my ignorance, am left cold by the SO productions - their Tosca was sooooo sloooow and leaden, I preferred the playing in the VO production, even though it was sung in German).

Not seen Carmen at the VO, though - and I'm a bit picky with my casts at the VO. They're a bit short on good female singers at the moment - and good baritones, since der Schmutzhard decamped to Frankfurt, the ratbag!

I think I'd go for ZF but that's chiefly because I like the opera better. I suspect Carmen would be livelier.

Burnley, United...
Destination Expert
for Vienna
posts: 8,735
reviews: 75
2. Re: Carmen or Zauberflöte

Thanks Rol. That's quite interesting because I loved the Staatsoper Tosca!

Vienna, Austria
Destination Expert
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3. Re: Carmen or Zauberflöte

Unfortunately, I haven't seen Carmen at the Volksoper. The cast of Zauberflöte at Staatsoper isn't spectacular. Carmen might be better value for money.

Tosca at the Staatsoper is quite about the oldest production they still run (from the 1950s), so what they make of it depends very much on the cast of the very evening.

Wien, Austria
Destination Expert
for Vienna
posts: 2,613
reviews: 41
4. Re: Carmen or Zauberflöte

I found ZF in VO a bit boring. Very dull colours eg the Papageno .

Also the acting didnt convince me especial the Königin der Nacht and Pamina.

Not seen Carmen

Oxford, UK
Destination Expert
for Salzburg
posts: 1,736
reviews: 10
5. Re: Carmen or Zauberflöte

Re. the SO Tosca - I actually liked the traditional production; it was the pace of it which seemed really slow compared with other productions I've heard (yes, she dares to criticize the WP!) and it lacked drama. And Scarpia's wig made him look like Mr Burns playing Dracula. Not exactly menacing.

Unlike HuSanNiang I like the VO ZF, but I would say if you find that to be colourless, you would find the set etc for the SO production absolutely dreary!

In my frequent trips to Vienna I go to the VO a lot, and the SO occasionally. I am no music critic but I've gradually come to really that, on the whole, I find the VO performances more emotionally satisfying than those at the SO. Of course that might be partly because I can afford better seats at the VO so I'm closer to the action!

Burnley, United...
Destination Expert
for Vienna
posts: 8,735
reviews: 75
6. Re: Carmen or Zauberflöte

Thanks HuSanNiang. The Zauberflöte is at the SO however.

Wien, Austria
Destination Expert
for Vienna
posts: 2,613
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7. Re: Carmen or Zauberflöte

OK mixed that up.

vienna
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for Vienna, Lower Austria, Austrian Alps
posts: 13,597
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8. Re: Carmen or Zauberflöte

I would check both the performances closely. I believe these are productions with stark modern scenery, that in many attendees opinions, take away from the evening. This up to your taste.Add a less than stellar cast and the evening is not memorable. Unfortunately the cast probably not announced yet for May at the Volksoper., but usually an ok ensemble.

I have often recommended the Volks Oper for certain productions to me a good value and hopefully this does not cloud my judgment.

By May, the Volksoper should have their outside kiosk in front of the main doorway open for a drink before the performance and at the pause to add an enjoyable atmosphere .

The cafe just across the street from the entrance also supplies drinks quickly at the pause too and makes a good alternative to the Buffet-fewer people - less waiting.

Your choice

Burnley, United...
Destination Expert
for Vienna
posts: 8,735
reviews: 75
9. Re: Carmen or Zauberflöte

Thanks Vertical. I've been to the Volksoper before and always enjoyed it. But to me the quality of the Carmen is crucial to that opera. I may wait until the cast is announced and ask again - I cannot find cast details for performances beyond March.

vienna
Destination Expert
for Vienna, Lower Austria, Austrian Alps
posts: 13,597
reviews: 23
10. Re: Carmen or Zauberflöte

Perhaps you will find the cast list about one month or a little more before the performance.

I think up to this time the majority of Carmen casting this season is either

A. Simonian - a soloist for some years at the Volkaoper or

Zoryana Kushpler - one of her roles has been Prinz Orlowsky in Fledermaus. As you know this role most often by tradition portrayed by a woman. I have a problem thinking of the transition from the Pribz to Carmen.

Simonian would be my choice.

Edited: 10:22 am, January 28, 2013