While not one of my favourite opera, Nina, O Sia La Pazza Per Amore still has much to like about it, especially the music. This along with the Cecilia Bartoli is a wonderful production. The costumes and sets are sumptuous, true to period and generally beautifully lit(though Pertusi sometimes looks as though he is in shadow). The music is stylistically performed the orchestra and chorus and authoritatively and musically conducted. The staging doesn't resort to static or distasteful business, which is always a good thing in regard to opera productions. It was the three leads though that made the production as good as it was. Special mention goes to Michele Pertusi, one of finest basses of recent years in resonant voice and with firmly commanding stage presence. Anna Caterina Antonacci once again brings her rich mezzo voice and her intelligent acting ability to the titular role. The production is also noteworthy for Juan Diego Florez at the start of his career. While as Lindoro he doesn't quite dominate the stage the way he does now, he does give a performance of surprising sensitivity and sings with his usual effortless high notes, excellent technique and youthful sound. Giuseppe Fillanoti is also very good in this role.
All in all, a wonderful production with three superb leads and signifying the start to a great career for Florez. 10/10 Bethany Cox
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