We are here to encourage the development of gifted young singers and to stimulate the growth of New York City's invaluable chamber opera companies. But we will not neglect the Metropolitan Opera either. Get ready for bouquets and brickbats.

Saturday, January 30, 2016


Robert Garner and Percy Martinez

We enjoyed Tuesday night's cabaret evening at the Metropolitan Room so much that we returned on Thursday.  The program was largely the same and we refer you to the previous review for details. Here we will focus on the new addition to the program, baritone Robert Garner whom we enjoyed so much in Amore Opera's La Bohème (review archived).

We never tire of Figaro's aria from Rossini's Il barbiere di Siviglia. Mr. Garner filled it with color and personality, especially limning the contrast between the services Figaro provides for "le donnette" and those he provides for "i cavalieri". It was an expansive delivery and the rapid patter passages were delivered with panache. He excelled as Rigoletto in the tragic final quartet from Verdi's masterpiece.

From Bizet's Les pecheurs du perles, he sang "Au fond du temple saint", a duet with tenor Percy Martinez; it was a thing of beauty. He has a special flair for French and a special affection for Bizet, as heard in his performance of the Toreador Song from Carmen.  He had just the right self-important air and used his red jacket as a cape.  The low notes were strong and sturdy.

We hope he performs again with this terrific group of singers assembled by Judith Fredricks, Founder and Artistic Director of Opera New York.

Stay tuned for information on their appearance in a festival of cabaret on Feb. 20th. also at the Metropolitan Room.

(c) meche kroop

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