Elektra at the Verbier Festival

“Elektra, played by soprano, Lise Lindstrom, uses more than a traditional palette of colors. Onstage for almost the whole hour and forty-five minutes of the opera, she never flags. Each of her major encounters in the field of anguish fills us with both her and her character’s range of emotional power – whispers, shouts, shrieks, cries, growls of desperation, rage, giddy exaltation, exultation, and grief. Remarkably, Lise Lindstrom’s vocal capacity begins to seem infinite. Her voice here is rarely beautiful unless she wants it to be and winds up mostly slicing the shrill by choice, but always a constant hammer, forcing one nail after the other into the coffin that will become her mother’s, and that of Aegisthus. And she is not afraid to use it so. Hell-bent, this Elektra, smiling and mocking, unchecked, desperate and agitated, in her green robe, bedecked with floral neck design, is perfectly at home in the part, its range, its tonality, its violence. Never does she let us out of her grip. From facial variety – eyes staring, glinting, gleaming, closing, flashing, alarming – to hand gestures that cap some of the range and depth of her emotion – as well as body shift and switch, give us a whole woman, wracked by what she is determined to let be known.”