Review by Willard Manus

Los Angeles Opera continues its exciting 2021-22 season with the holiday attraction, CINDERELLA (LA CENERENTOLA), Rossini’s comic masterpiece, conducted by Roberto Abbado. Performances are Nov. 20-Dec. 12 at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.

In CINDERELLA true love conquers all–-even a pompous stepfather and two wicked stepsisters. Fast-rising operatic royalty Serena Malfi and Levy Sekgapane star as the fairytale lovers, backed by Ildebrando D’Arcangelo as the matchmaker and Alessandro Corbelli as the stepfather who tries to foil the happy ending.

CINDERELLA comes on the heels of the recent productions of Verdi’s “Il Trovatore” and Wagner’s “Tannhauser,” both of which deserve high praise. “Il Trovatore” was notable for its vocal achievements, led by Guanqun Yu as Leonora, the love interest of both Manrico, the Troubador (Limmie Pulliam), and the Count (Vladimir Stoyanov). All three sang robustly, as did Morris Robinson (as the Captain of the Guard) and Tiffany Townsend (as Leonora’s suffering servant.)

“Tannhauser” was particularly noteworthy for James Conlon’s conducting and the performance of heldentenor, Issach Savage. His work and Conlon’s orchestral wizardry made the struggle between sin and salvation come alive in the Music Center in a vibrant and thrilling way.

LA Opera will live-stream two performances of CINDERELLA, for audience members who are unable to catch the opera in person or prefer to watch from home. The dates are Nov. 28 at noon, Dec. 1 at 7.30pm. There is a $30 access charge.

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