perjantai 27. tammikuuta 2012

Mozart! - Operettszínház, Budapest 2010

Mészáros Árpád Zsolt / Dolhai Attila - Wolfgang Mozart
Németh Attila - Hieronymus Colloredo
Földes Marci - Amadé
Vágó Zsuzsi / Szimenfálvy Agota - Constanze Weber
Pálfalvy Attila / Földes Tamás - Leopold Mozart
Vágó Bernadett - Nannerl Mozart
Náray Erika - Waldstätten bárónő
Bereczki Zoltán - Emanuel Schikaneder
Langer Soma - Karl Joseph Arco gróf
Marik Péter - Doktor Messmer
Molnár Piroska - Cäcilia Weber
Dénes Judit - Aloysia Weber
Ullmann Zsuzsa - Josepha Weber
Tihanyi Lívia - Sophie Weber
Csuha Lajos - Fridolin Weber, Thorwald

Attila Dolhai & Amadé (Photos: Operettszínház)
 This was the first time ever I saw some production of Mozart! on stage. I must say I'm happy with the start, because the Hungarian production works in many ways very well. It has some of the usual Operettszínház faults like too much pointless ensemble and too much unimportant & not very good-looking set pieces, but generally it wasn't as bad as I had feared. Either I've gotten used to the theatre's style or then I was just too traumatized by their Elisabeth two years earlier.

Let me start with the biggest negative side of the performance: Árpád Zsolt Mészáros as Wolfgang Mozart. I can sort of understand why his portrayal is like it is and why some people like it, but for me he totally wasn't Wolfgang. Most of the time he behaved like a 5-year-old with an ADHD and occasionally he turned into a retarded clown. Wolfgang has those sides, yes, but MÁZs took it a bit too far for my taste. I'd like to add about ten years to his mental age and take out the worst straight stupidity. Kunze's Wolfgang is supposed to be clever in his own way, after all, just not very good at taking care of his everyday life. I don't know if the impression had been any different if I had really understood all the lyrics, but based on the German lyrics I couldn't always see MÁZs!Wolfgang thinking or saying the things he sings, mostly in the angsty songs. Even though I'm usually on Leopold's side, I want to feel sympathy for Wolfgang at least in some scenes. In this case I couldn't see things from Wolfgang's point of view.

But if you forget the actual portrayal, his acting was extremely good and intense, pretty much in the same way as he sings very well but I don't like his voice. Technically everything essential is there, but then we get to speak about different tastes in characters and voices.

Attila Dolhai
 Besides, I can't help it and it totally isn't his fault, either, but I simply find the guy repulsive. There's something in him that makes me think touching him would make me vomit. I had forgotten how much sex there is in the Hungarian production, and let's just say that I could have done without a couple of sights of MÁZs making out with someone. Not to mention Wolfgang stripping off all his clothes in one scene, which I had happily forgotten about, too.

Later we had Attila Dolhai in the role, and though I kind of liked his portrayal more and prefer his voice, I felt he lacked energy and acted in a bit too old and mature way for Wolfgang. I wish I could see someone totally different in the role.

Attila Dolhai
I really, really like the way they handle Amadé in this production. The kid truly is demonic, and on the same time he in a way seems to be a very good friend of Wolfgang's. Like, in the end Amadé first kisses Wolfgang's cheek lovingly and then stabs him in the heart to drain his last drops of blood for the Requiem. One of the rare moments when I actually really liked MÁZs was in "Der rote Rock", when Amadé first came to stage as his double. Wolfgang puts on the red coat, looks into the mirror, sees Amadé in it - completely to his own astonishment -, and for half a scene they just look at and kind of discover each other, until Wolfgang seems to accept that okay, I've got an invisible 8-year-old me following me and writing me music. I've never seen Amadé being presented like that, usually he just is there and Wolfgang knows it, so it was interesting to see Wolfgang's reactions to him. Generally the two reacted very much to each other, they were pals but also enemies, and Amadé going *facepalm* when Wolfgang was once again lured somewhere by ladies was sweet.


Szilveszter Szabó and brains

Luckily MÁZs is my only complaint about the cast. Attila Németh's voice isn't quite enough for Colloredo's songs, but his acting made it up. I wish I could see Silveszter Szabó as Colloredo. Both Vágó girls suited their roles well and didn't shout that much. The same goes for Erika Náray and Zoltán Bereczki, and the rest of the people were okay or good, too. I must give a special mention to Soma Langer as Count Arco. The guy was hilarious and had great facial expressions and sang very well.

Mozart! is one of my favourite musicals ever, but it seems to be hard to make a really good production of it. We've come to the conclusion that when you get the rights to perform Mozart!, you get the libretto Kunze happens to like best at that moment, and then some additional scenes you can fit into preferred places in the musical. The Hungarians have quite a nice mixture, although there still are scenes that could be left out, moved to another place or made a bit differently. Like, I don't approve of replacing "Was für ein grausames Leben" with a preprise of "Wie wird man seinen Schatten los", because the latter is much more effective when it only comes in the end of the 1st act. And yet there later seemed to be a random short reprise of "Was für ein grausames Leben", the point of which I didn't quite get. I also wonder why "Ein bissl für's Herz" is almost in the end, when things are starting to go downhill and more dramatic. The song feels out of place.

Szilveszter Szabó and a phallic candle
I very much like the final scene, I actually got goosebumps in it and that doesn't happen very often nowadays. I love the original finale song, too, but ending the musical with "Mozart! Mozart!" works better, and Amadé "conducting" it was creepy. Colloredo's travel scene with the Episode Of The Portable Toilet impressed me, the skiing guys on the sides of the cleverly made sleigh worked very well and the toilet part of the scene was great. I also adore "Egyszerű út", the new duet between Colloredo and Wolfgang somewhere in the 2nd act.

Zoltán Bereczki playing air tuning fork
I regularly forget how much I love Mozart!'s score. Some songs are less good than the others, but it definitely has some of my favourite Levay songs ever, like the abovementioned "Mozart! Mozart!". Generally I adore the musical even if I sometimes forget its existence for a while, it's definitely one of my favourites and would deserve more productions. The story is tragic and touching, about growing up, making independent choices, not understanding people and fighting against norms, and seeing the musical done well feels like a mental gym.

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