Vienna to Met: Who’s got the bigger Tosca?

Vienna to Met: Who’s got the bigger Tosca?


norman lebrecht

January 08, 2018

The Vienna State Opera brings back Tosca tonight in Margarethe Wallman’s production for its 600th performance.

The cast has been seriously souped up:

Floria Tosca     Angela Gheorghiu
Mario Cavaradossi     Massimo Giordano
Baron Scarpia     Erwin Schrott

Jesús López Cobos conducts.

There is a real whiff of competitiveness about Tosca at the moment, the more so since it was Vienna that was forced to release Sonya Yoncheva to save the Met’s bacon.



  • Sir Kitt says:

    ‘There is a real whiff of competitiveness about Tosca at the moment’

    I mean, there isn’t, but whatever…

    • Nik says:

      Wait until he finds out that the ROH has Calleja and Finley next week.

      • Tristan says:

        Calleja had obvious problems at the small house of Grange Park Opera and neither Finley nor Schrott seem a first class Scarpia, even Terfel was not!
        Gheorgiu is an underpowered Tosca, a roles Freni didn’t even sing on stage and great Renata Scotto even struggled a bit with it when on stage. Let’s not think of Callas or Tebaldi, Price or Kabaiwanska but lately we didn’t hear a great Tosca on stage. I think the best choice will be Netrebko as one needs power for this role which needs more dramatic power than Angela can deliver. She is a nice Mimi though never came close to Freni or Cotrubas
        Anja Harteros seems a good fit also!

        • BRIGE O. says:

          You mean Neb was a better choice for Tosca? That’s so ridiculous. Neb has a big sound though, with wobble and off-pitch singing She has no technique and no idea to sing such a role necessitating dramatic vocal acting
          listen to her ludicrous Adriana Lecouvreur last nov in Vienna

          (that’s Adriana or Turandot?)

          • Tristan says:

            She didn’t sing this role yet but trust she will be great in it unlike Netrebko who is simply to light for it and her manierism is unbearable! Tosca needs a voice!!! Given we don’t have anyone in the range I mentioned Anna could be a TOSCA! Ok, definitely not like Callas or Tebaldi or Price but a much better match than overrated Gheorghiu!

        • Nik says:

          This appears to be Finley’s role debut as Scarpia. I can’t see any reason why he shouldn’t be first class. I’ve seen him in many different roles and he was first class in every one of them. His voice only seems to be gaining power with age. His Lear in Salzburg last summer was one of the most impressive performances I’ve heard from any singer.
          I’m looking forward to Monday.

        • Gabriel says:

          Really Tristan. Enjoy riding your Harley. That should be right sized for you. So pathetic. Really pathetic. This is what’s wrong with classical and opera. Entrenched fanatics. Enjoy a beautiful voice my dear. And be content with that.

  • Petros Linardos says:

    Ah, the Vienna production I enjoyed in the late 70s and early 80s, which was premiered in 1958. One can even follow the plot.

  • brian says:

    “Who’s got the bigger Tosca?” Is this at all related to the question of who has the bigger nuclear button?

  • MWnyc says:

    Yes, but did they get any rehearsals?