The Metropolitan Opera’s Live HD broadcasts go dark this weekend with Benjamin Britten’s modern masterpiece Peter Grimes.
Anthony Dean Griffey sings the title role in this story of a fisherman who hopes for a better life but suffers from misfortune and bad temperament. The opera is known for letting the audience decide whether Grimes is a true villain or a victim of society. This production is directed by John Doyle, whose Tony Award-winning production of Stephen Sondheim’s Company originally was staged at Cincinnati’s Playhouse in the Park.
Anthony Tommasini's review for The New York Times provides a nice, quick historical accounting of the 1945 opera at the Met, and he says that Griffey's performance adds new dimensions to the role:
"Mr. Griffey, even though his voice has heft and carrying power, is essentially a lyric tenor. And it is disarming to hear the role sung with such vocal grace, even sweetness in places. Every word of his diction is clear. You sense Grimes’s dreamy side struggling to emerge. The moments of gentleness, though, make Mr. Griffey’s impulsive fits of hostility, his bursts of raw vocal power, seem even more threatening."
The opera will be shown at 1:30 p.m. Saturday at the Regal Hamburg Pavilion 16, Lexington Green Movies 8 and Richmond Mall Cinemas 8; and at 3 p.m. March 16 at Lexington Green and Richmond Mall. Tickets are $22 for adults, $20 for seniors and $15 for children. Click here for links to advance tickets.
If you can't make it to the movie theater, Peter Grimes is also the Met's radio broadcast this week, heard in Central Kentucky on WEKU (88.9 FM).