Review: Renee Fleming's world-class pipes take center stage at the Straz
Even the most ardent opera lover will probably never see Conchita or Iris or Fedora, but those who were at Renee Fleming's concert Tuesday night heard some arias from them. The soprano championed these obscure Italian works from the turn of the 20th century on her latest album, Verismo, and they supplied the backbone of the program she sang as part of the Opera Tampa series in Morsani Hall at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts.
In one of the most fun sections of the concert, Fleming performed two arias from Leoncavallo's La Boheme by Mimi and Musette (as she is called in this less known La Boheme) and then Mimi's farewell to Rodolfo from Puccini's La Boheme. It's the sort of party trick that opera aficionados dream about, and to have it done by as consummate a singer as Fleming was a luxury.
The diva wowed not just with her singing but also with her wardrobe, a pair of strapless gowns by Angel Sanchez, including a firehouse red number that drew a gasp from the audience when she came on after intermission.