Whether she's now 66 or 71, I wouldn't be surprised to see Anja Silja return to the Met stage. But if Saturday's matinee was her last bow here, it was a fine close: in her best, most vocally powerful performance of the last weeks, Silja sang and acted with a young woman's energy. The amount communicated by her simply bending over or stretching herself up was remarkable.
Meanwhile matinee audiences continued their habit of being the loudest and worst-behaved: from nonstop coughing to a cell-phone ring in the space before the final duet, the relatively full house did their best to derail the performance. Maybe we were lucky -- in the immediate sense, anyway -- to have smaller, dedicated audiences for most of the revival.
The latest casting rumors, incidentally, confirm my guess about next season's Manon Lescaut. And there's also something that the Jenufa/Onegin juxtaposition brought to mind... Actually, all the new details seem promising (except for a Norma almost as disastrous as the last), including Sondra Radvanovsky in the new Trovatore. Hey, didn't someone claim she'd been fired? Fortunately not.