Man who can't sing reviews soprano
Even in Mozart, earnest young love tends to pall, and we wait for the appearance of evil to heighten our interest. The Cleveland Institute of Music’s production of The Magic Flute delivered Friday night.
The staging in a constricted space was imaginative, and the orchestra played with verve. The Papageno subplot was appropriately comic, and Richard Ollarsaba, a junior, was majestic as Sarastro.
But what one wants to see most in The Magic Flute is the Queen of the Night, with her anger and embodiment of malice in two show-stopping arias. Tamara Ryan, wearing gowns that would have done Elizabeth I proud, brought all the passion of the role to the stage. She has a wonderfully pure, clear voice, and she shot forth those damnably high notes in apparent effortlessness. She was a delight.
I should disclose that I was a member of a small but enthusiastic claque. Ms. Ryan and my daughter, Alice, were roommates in their freshman year at Swarthmore College. Ms. Ryan is now in the master’s program at the Institute, and I think we may hope to hear more of her in the years to come.