by Paula Citron
Opera in Concert’s production of Donizetti’s bel canto Anna Bolena was uncommonly good led by music director Nathalie Doucet Lalkens who showed a deep understanding of interpretation.
Expressive soprano Lara Ciekiewicz as Anna spun legato lines of elegance, and displayed beauty both at her high and low registers. Charismatic tenor Stuart Howe as Percy had to slide a bit into his high notes for this performance, being under the weather, but his beautiful middle range shone through.
Mezzo-soprano Jennifer Enns Modolo as Giovanna Seymour showed a clear, bright voice with a bell-like quality. She could be more dramatic in delivery, however. Mezzo-soprano Lauren Segal as Smeton always impresses with her honey-coated, distinctive, lush tone.
Bass Michael Uloth as Enrico and baritone Sean Watson as Rochefort were problematic. Uloth is clearly a talent, but his pacing was ragged and his hand gestures distracting. Watson, unfortunately, always sounds woofy because his vibrato obscures his musicality. Young tenor Justin Ralph showed promise as Hervey.
From the Jane Mallett Theatre, I’m Paula Citron, arts reviewer for THE NEW CLASSICAL 96.3 FM.