Por fim, Daniel Barenboim estreia-se no Met, com Tristan und Isolde, peça em que tem mostrado infinitas virtudes interpretativas:
«The ovation was greater and richly deserved five hours later, when Mr. Barenboim took his solo bow onstage. Though his performance of this challenging masterpiece was rhapsodic and impassioned, it was also keenly sensitive to the score’s harmonic shifts and architectonic structure. The Met orchestra played splendidly for him, and somehow he altered its sheen and color, making it sound duskier and warmer.
On Friday night he was at his best. The expansive episodes of the score, starting with his raptly beautiful account of the orchestral prelude, had breadth and radiance yet never lost a thread of lyrical tension. During the Act II duet for the star-crossed lovers — as Tristan, here the German tenor Peter Seiffert, and Isolde, the Swedish soprano Katarina Dalayman, seek comfort for their burning and illicit passion in the enveloping night (“O sink hernieder, Nacht der Liebe”) — the yearning music seemed to hover in some undulant, timeless realm that was beyond meter and bar lines. Yet in the arduous Act III scene in which the wounded, delirious Tristan mistakenly believes that he has seen Isolde’s boat approaching the shore, Mr. Barenboim drove the performance to a feverish pitch, while keeping the textures clear and without ever lapsing into bombast.
Ms. Dalayman made her Met debut in 1999 when this “Tristan und Isolde” production, by Dieter Dorn, was introduced, singing Brangäne, a role traditionally taken by mezzo-sopranos. She may not have a sumptuously beautiful Wagnerian soprano voice, but she has a cool, penetrating Nordic sound, especially in her bright top notes. On Friday there were rough patches in her vocal performance. But mostly Ms. Dalayman sang with earthy, varied colorings, flashes of intensity and, during the love duet, poignantly affecting lyricism.
Mr. Seiffert, a veteran Wagnerian, was not the first Tristan to sound as if he was struggling to sing the role, while still pulling off an effective portrayal. There was a leathery quality to his midrange singing, and he sounded congested at times in his lower register.
But when he had to, he summoned husky, full-voiced phrases. Only in the final stages of Tristan’s delirium, at the end of the character’s voice-punishing final scene, did Mr. Seiffert seem vocally spent.
And the amazing bass René Pape was better than ever as King Marke, to whom Isolde is pledged in marriage, singing with resplendent sound, unforced power and magisterial authority. Few singers have conveyed Marke’s feelings of betrayal by his beloved nephew Tristan with such lofty, noble anguish.
But the big news is that Mr. Barenboim has finally joined the Met’s roster. Though music lovers may quibble over his individual performances, the Met must keep this formidable musician in its fold.»
(Seiffert e Dalayman, como Tristão e Isolda, Met Opera House, Novembro de 2008)