Opera October 2016
Met stalwart Lucine Amara cheerfully greeted the audience of April 17's La Gioconda by introducing Verismo Opera's new music director, Lucy Arner. A former Met assistant conductor with extensive experience, Arner succeeded - despite minimal rehearsal, in giving coherent architecture and pace to this very difficult undertaking, boding well for an organization devoted to "red sauce Italian" works. The level of instrumental playing was commendably high. Arner ensured that Ponchielli's patchy but (in places) highly effective score breathed the proper style.
...the orchestra was rugged but not ragged: kudos to conductor Lucy Arner! It was Gioconda, all of it, sung and played with style and vigor