When Thomas Hampson fell sick hours before the show, there was a momentary wobble. Then the Met called in superhero Matthias Goerne, who had sung a Schubert recital at Carnegie Hall the night before and Wozzeck with the Vienna Phil a week before. With no more than a glimpse of the general rehearsal and a quick fitting, Goerne went on that vast stage and sang Wozzeck.
How was it? A hint: Placido Domingo leaped to his feet applauding at the curtain. Our New York operavores Elizabeth Frayer and Shawn E Milnes were there. Click here for their rapid review.
Sample: I found Matthias Goerne’s performance to be harrowing. His Wozzeck was both terrifying and pathetic yet sympathetic. A disturbing yet appropriate combination. His barreling physicality lent a man-child aspect to the performance that only deepened my compassion for him, even as it repulsed me.