No nudity, please, we're skittish
If you're all excited about seeing Salome tomorrow, the first matinee HD simulcast of the season from the Metropolitan Opera, because you heard there's a lot of skin in the production, well, don't lose your head over it. Word is that soprano Karita Mattila's much-talked-about nude finale to the "Dance of the Seven Veils" will be discreetly filmed, avoiding the possibility that anyone in hundreds of movie theaters around the country will actually see her bare it all. But, hey, that sort of sensationalism is hardly why anyone goes to the opera, right? Besides, there's a whole mess of sensationalism just in Richard Strauss' stunning score for Salome.
The good news for Baltimore-area opera fans is that there are more local venues than ever before to see this non-nudie scene, and, of course, to hear one of today's most compelling artists portray one of opera's most irresistibly evil women. If you've never experienced a Mattila performance, you're in for something very hot. She'll be joined in this cast by a fellow Finn, Juha Uusitalo, as Jochanaan and Kim Begley as Herod. Patrick Summers conducts.
Broadcast time for Salome is 1 p.m. Saturday. Showings are available at the Lyric Opera House (110 W. Mt. Royal Ave.), Owings Mills 17 (10100 Mill Run Circle), Bel Air Cinema 14 (409 Constant Friendship Blvd, Abingdon), Snowden Square (9161 Commerce Center Dr., Columbia), and Columbia Mall 14 (10300 Little Patuxent Parkway). Click here for tickets.
(Personally, I don't know why there's been so much chatter about Mattila's willingness to take it all off. She's hardly the first soprano to do so. I still recall all too well, for example, a Salome with Maria Ewing at the San Francisco Opera back in the early '90s; her Full Monty turned out to be the only thing about her performance that stuck in the memory afterward. Too bad she couldn't have shed the wobble in her voice that night instead.)
AP/METROPOLITAN OPERA PHOTO