The first two reviews for City Opera’s bold reopening this weekend are something of a let-down.
Christopher Johnson in Zeal NYC: Every decade or so, Harold Prince serves up a dog’s breakfast and calls it Candide. New York City Opera presented the latest such repast last Friday at the Rose Theatre…. The current production only adds to the mayhem. It features a mixed grill of Broadway veterans and conspicuously handsome young opera-singers, all of whom seem to have been coached to perform as if they were hyperkinetic tenth-graders. Deploying a large repertoire of funny voices and ethnic stereotypes, Edelman, Zien, and Ashmanskas turn what is arguably the greatest set of lyrics ever written for the musical theatre into near-gibberish,
Eric C Simpson in New York Classical Review: Candide, a reasonably faithful adaptation of Voltaire’s classic satire, is a bizarre road-trip farce that drags its principals from Westphalia, to Lisbon, El Dorado, Cadiz, Cartagena, and Constantinople, beset along the way by inquisitors, pirates, and marauding Bulgarians…. Broadway veteran Gregg Edelman led a cast of singers and actors drawn mostly from the New York theater circuit, a casting strategy that led to some mixed results.
The parish sheet has yet to pronounce.