I saw the new production premiere of Berlioz’s La Damnation de Faust at the Metropolitan Opera last week, and finally got around to reading the review in the New York Times: Music Review – La Damnation de Faust – At the Metropolitan Opera, a World Morphs on Video – NYTimes.com.
Their take was a bit different than mine. I found the high amount of video and technology interesting and avant-garde, though still in need of more rehearsal while it was even a bit gratuitous at times. The horse riders had distracting lighting that did not appear to really ride on the virtual steeds, the walking and falling up and down the beams to the top of the stage and then lowered again on wires was distracting, and one of the moving curtains was distractingly stuck mid-open at the end.
I am glad to see the MET pushing the boundaries of classic opera, as I think this will make a traditional art form more accessible and allow audiences to see it in a new way. I think anything that helps make art and culture more approachable is beneficial, especially when trying to reach a new audiences.