Klara Kolonits. I already wrote about her at other occasions. Each time I listen to her, I get a fit of an uncontrollable anger, because a singer like this should have all theatres in the world at her feed, and yet if I want to hear her live, I need to go to Budapest (these are mysteries, or better misfortunes of the opera world, that I know already quite well, having done the job for more than twenty years). She controls her instrument in every way, colours, varies with incredible skill. Her portrayal of Lucia is a lunatic since the very beginning, but a feisty one, in whom there is no resignation towards the pression of the family, only forced acceptance of her brother’s violence. She only collapses after having read the fake letter. Her lack of resignation can be noticed especially in the marriage scene, where her attitude is implacable and fierce. Her “madness”, this time in usual key and with the flute accompaniment (contrary to the one last year in French edition key and glass harmonica, where she topped the mad scene with a high F) is a vocal masterpiece. Her ornaments bear resemblance to those of Sills, for some they may be too much, but in a way she performs them – they are thrilling. As a side note, she is a lovely and humble person, who expresses her gratitude each time we come to see her.
(…)I thought I just don’t like soprano voices. Today I realised, that I have no problem with soprano range, apparently just some timbres – unlike the one of Klára Kolonits, velvety soft, rich, caressing my ears. I could listen to her Lucia for an eternity, she produces the sound so gracefully, harmoniously. Along with her beautiful timbre also her stage presence is suggestive, often dramatically chilling.
After my not-so-good opera experiences I realised that the music of Donizetti inspires me and I can enjoy it a lot. I soared with the music as if on a little boat, I was entirely immersed in the sounds. I even shed a tear during the love duet between Klára Kolonits and Péter Balczó. This is, I think, what they call catharsis.
After Lucia’s mad scene there was such a long and enthusiastic applause, that I was moved myself. I don’t know why the artist isn’t more widely known, because as my father in law says: she is a miracle.
Kolonits, who’s clearly at her top form, produced a young, energetic woman, exploding with energy also in the mad scene.
I need to make a separate note on Kolonits’ vocal production and its relation to the previously heard shows. She sang this version last time in 2015 in Szombathely, with the traditional flute cadenza. The theatre decided to get back to the original key in the times of the premiere.
Klára Kolonits clearly reigned upon that higher version too, but of course without this unnecessary challenge she could create more freely her musical and stage interpretation.
The voice is perfectly even, thanks to the more dramatic roles in the past years it got fuller and more rich in the middle range, it sounds softly and without strain in the lower tessitura, opens up securely, soars free and ringing up to the highest notes. I enjoyed that in this version she skipped the ornamentations that I found excessive in the previous variant, this time the amount of virtuosity was exactly perfect according to both style and taste. Thanks to the internet I heard all the famous Lucias from all around the world in the past years – there was not a single one who would come close to this perfect interpretation. We can be proud and happy, that this star is Hungarian.
There is surely a big role of the diva in another successful run of Donizetti’s masterpiece – Klára Kolonits always makes her Lucia a bit different. This year I found her interpretation, in a way, pure. I did enjoy the virtuoso ornamentations from the premiere run, because the artist always puts them at service of the dramatic expression. She cut some of those in this year’s series, but it somehow did not affect negatively the artistic quality of her interpretation. Her voice soars wonderfully to the higher tessitura but is also equally secure in the lower range. All this with her signature musicality, mastery of the style, professional stage routine but first of all – with her incredible sensitivity in portraying the character’s fragile soul. Her Lucia became more complex, psychologically even more convincing throughout the years.