La Scena Musicale

Saturday, 15 March 2008

Met Tristan und Isolde Suffers Second Setback

Deborah Voigt is the latest star to fall sick in the Metropolitan Opera's current production of Wagner's Tristan und Isolde. According to the Associated Press, soprano Deborah Voigt left in the middle of the second act Friday night because of a stomach ailment and was replaced by understudy Janice Baird.
Voigt sang the opener but didn't sound at her best Friday and had trouble with the high notes during the first act.
"She was very heroic," Met general manager Peter Gelb said. "She told me before the second act began that she was feeling sick this morning but she didn't tell us because she didn't want to disturb us. She wanted to be very supportive of Mr. Lehman."
After the first act, Voigt spoke with Gelb and said she was ill.
"We agreed she would start the second act and see how it went," Gelb said.
Baird, Voigt's cover singer, was put on alert during the first intermission, which lasted about 10 minutes longer than usual, and by the start of the second act was standing by.
Voigt signaled near the beginning of the second-act love duet that she couldn't continue and hurried offstage. Music director James Levine kept conducting. Then the curtain came down, Lehman started singing and the orchestra stopped.
An announcement was made that Voigt suddenly had taken ill. Baird got into the costume that Voigt had been wearing and replaced her about 10-15 minutes later. Baird and Lehman received enthusiastic applause at the end of the act.
The production opened on Monday, March 10 with Canadian tenor John Mac Master taking over for an ailing Ben Heppner, who announced that he was still indisposed through the March 22 Simulcast.

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