Well, Butterfly is still knocking 'em dead; Saturday my theater was packed, and the audience kept applauding through the whole thing. This was the first time I'd heard Kristine Opolais, and I'm hearing Butterfly's entrance in my head right now. The first act was rather erotic. Alagna seems to keep getting stronger the older he grows. A little too strong, perhaps; he completely drowned out the soprano at the end of their first-act love duet. But he made Pinkerton's remorse at the end more convincing than I've ever seen/heard, although this hero can never really be sympathetic.

I thought it was a terrific show. The puppet-son was just as effective in this production as in the last one that used it. I liked the décor and the costumes -- although the outfit designed for Yamadori was a bit de trop. I realize he was meant to look ridiculous, a vain and selfish man not worthy of Butterfly. But during his one brief appearance, I halfway expected to hear him burst out with "My object all sublime, I shall achieve in time..."