From our special correspondent
The terrors of the night mingle with those of the day. Curled up in his disproportionate bed, a teenager lives an endless nightmare from which, however, he will emerge strangely glorious … It is indeed from the point of view of the child that the soldier Wozzeck had with Marie – out of wedlock and out of “morality”. »- that Michel Fau inscribed his staging of the opera by Alban Berg, premiered in Berlin in 1925. Less than two hours, dazzling and heartbreaking, which mark the lyrical universe with their ever-burning seal. Each episode of Wozzeck draws the characters towards the abyss, giving rise to new hallucinatory paintings. In Toulouse, the coherence of the subject and the effectiveness of the technical effects are unfortunately marred by a crude aesthetic. The jerky body language, the outrageous makeup and the expressionist mimicry of the singer-actors are convincing, with the exception of Wozzeck and Marie, whose moving humanity would require a more immediate approach, more sober above all.
In the pit, Leo Hussain carefully conducts the orchestra of the Capitol, carving out beautiful details failing to fully honor the fever, sometimes burning, sometimes shivering, which runs through the work. Haunted by the vision of blood, Wozzeck will kill Marie who was unfaithful to him, before drowning. Stéphane Degout possesses the voice, the dramatic and musical intelligence of the title role which he approaches for the first time in an already accomplished way. We imagine that he will now dig the shadows, explore the desolations, to transform the black and white of his incarnation into etching concealing all the intermediate nuances. Sophie Koch, whose elegant and haughty physique is unfortunately decked out in a Bavarian doll costume, struggled, on this premiere night, to fit into Marie’s vocality: the song line is struck and the treble is sometimes more shouted. that flourished.
Within the fine quality vocal cast, an artist imposes his presence with the dazzling evidence that strikes the viewer at every encounter. Tenor Wolfgang Ablinger-Sperrhacke plays the abusive Captain Wozzeck, holding great philosophical speeches, chatting over and over with a shady Doctor… Scary, ridiculous, formidable.