Billy Budd / San Francisco Opera

Nov 2004

Gunn's performance seemed to grow larger and more indelible with each scene. The American baritone easily embodies the "beauty" and "goodness" that endear Billy to his fellows and incite Claggart's lust for mayhem, and he imbued the character, who can sing but not read, with a fine blend of innocence and physical grace. Gunn's lyrical instrument also seemed ideally suited to the role's vocal demands. His Billy wanted nothing in agility, eloquence or projection; "Look! Through the port comes the moonshine astray!" was delivered with firm, lustrous tone and a deeply affecting sense of revelation."

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