The Opera thread

Discussion in 'Entertainment, Culture, and Sports' started by Mr. Checks, Mar 15, 2006.

  1. aKula

    aKula Senior member

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    I was just in Sydney last weekend to see Fidelio. The singer playing the title role was sick and the understudy was in Melbourne. They ended up calling a soprano who had recently played the role in Queensland. She had to drive to the opera house so it started around 40 minutes late. Ended up being quite an experience. Anke Hoeppner, the replacement, sang superbly especially given the circumstances.

    I often go to the opera here in Melbourne. Opera Australia, Victorian Opera, and the met recordings.
     
  2. Opermann

    Opermann Senior member

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    Now that I'm settled in Chicago, I've subscribed to the Lyric for the upcoming season. They have a great season, although no Germans this year, which is fine by me, since I'm a bigger fan of the Italians anyhow. I'm seeing Tosca opening night with Deborah Voigt and James Morris (won a "new subscriber contest," got free tickets!) and again (regular subscription) with the second cast in January (Violeta Urmana, Lucio Gallo, Marco Berti). Has anyone seen Voigt sing Tosca since her weight loss? Curious to hear people's opinions of her singing. Also very excited for Piotr Beczala in Faust and Sondra Radvanovsky in Ernani. Any exciting opera plans out there for the upcoming season?
    I've heard good things about Voigt and her weight loss. From a technical standpoint, the weight shouldn't really affect the singing other than having difficulty moving around the stage. I'm not holding my breath for Morris as Scarpia, his voice is suited better for the Wagner heldenbaritone rep, which sit a little lower than the Italian baritone roles. He should be able to snarl his way through it, though. The singers I look forward most are Frank Lopardo in the Elixer of Love and Vladimir Galouzine as Cavaradossi in Tosca. . I saw Galouzine in Pagliacci last season and he blew me away. A powerful Italianate voice and an excellent actor. Lopardo is more on the lyric side but his singing is truly thrilling. Two of the best tenors performing in the US, imo.
     
  3. adambparker

    adambparker Senior member

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    The singers I look forward most are Frank Lopardo in the Elixer of Love and Vladimir Galouzine as Cavaradossi in Tosca. . I saw Galouzine in Pagliacci last season and he blew me away. A powerful Italianate voice and an excellent actor. Lopardo is more on the lyric side but his singing is truly thrilling. Two of the best tenors performing in the US, imo.

    Interesting. I saw Galouzine in Pag as well, and was very impressed by his singing, but I thought he played the part angry all the way through and didn't really capture the sadness and despair that drive Canio through the end of the opera. He was wonderful to listen to, for the most part, but I thought he left a little something on the table.

    I am definitely excited for his Cavaradossi, but Cavaradossi is another complex character, one part poet, one part revolutionary. I hope he captures that complexity in his singing. He certainly has the voice for it.

    I don't know Lopardo, but I'm glad to have another tenor to look forward to. Beczala singing Faust should also be terrific. I haven't heard him live, since he's relatively new on the US scene, but I've been watching some recorded clips from his Met performances of the Duke in Rigoletto and Edgardo in Lucia, and he sounds phenomenal.
     
  4. Pezzaturra

    Pezzaturra Senior member

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    I was very pleasantly surprised by "Cavalleria rusticana " by Pietro Mascagni , it is a one-act and it is quintessential Italian opera with wonderful score and arias.

    I have mixed feelings about Met as an opera house; it is just too soul-less and generic and it has an effect on the Met experience in general.
     
  5. denimdestroyedmylife

    denimdestroyedmylife Big Winner

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    i understand the met has a lot going on this season. wagner's ring cycle, berg's lulu and strauss' elektra. wish i could go to any of those. recently watched a dvd of peter grimes at the met. my favorite of all time would be dido & aeneas. flagstad's "dido's lament" slaaaaaaaays:
    IMPORTANT NOTICE: No media files are hosted on these forums. By clicking the link below you agree to view content from an external website. We can not be held responsible for the suitability or legality of this material. If the video does not play, wait a minute or try again later. I AGREE

    TIP: to embed Youtube clips, put only the encoded part of the Youtube URL, e.g. eBGIQ7ZuuiU between the tags. also, yeah, love glass' "einstein on the beach". would love the chance to see a performance.
     
  6. Sherlockian

    Sherlockian Senior member

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  7. adambparker

    adambparker Senior member

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    Any thoughts about last night's Met premier? Bondy's production? The singers?

    I attended the season preview concert at the Lyric last night, courtesy of my being a new subscriber. Singers were from the company's development program, the Ryan Opera Center. Overall, the singing was pretty good. A mediocre "Vissi d'arte" to open, although the soprano acquitted herself rather better in "Ernani, involami." Definitely cut the high notes pretty short, but she did nicely with some of the vocal gymnastics and her tone was pleasant throughout. They did a couple pieces from Gounod's Faust, including a pleasant Jewel Song; a couple charming numbers from the Merry Widow (in English); a very solid "Una furtiva lagrima" from Elixir of Love, along with a really good duet; an aria that I didn't know from Berlioz's Damnation of Faust; and, to close, a duet and the sextet from Figaro.

    It was a very pleasant performance, just over an hour. Some talented young singers. Plus, it was general admission seating, so I got a chance to sit in great orchestra seats that a small-timer such as myself will not have access to for many years to come.
     
  8. chorse123

    chorse123 Senior member

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    I went to opening night last year, but decided to skip it this year. We have tickets for this Tosca in a few weeks and after hearing of the boos last night, I'm pretty happy with that decision, although not terribly excited about seeing it. I'm not much of a fan of Karita Mattila.


    Random line from the Times review:

    [​IMG]
     
  9. Connemara

    Connemara [URL='http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6jST2Sv63WQ']

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    There was a large chorus of boos (for the conductor and his production team apparently) at last night's Met opening.
     
  10. audiophilia

    audiophilia Senior member

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    In no particular order.

    Wozzeck
    Peter Grimes
    Tristan
    Le Nozze
    Zauberflote
    The Ring
    Salome
    Rosenkavalier
    Bluebeard's Castle
    Butterfly

    Great thread, BTW!
     
  11. audiophilia

    audiophilia Senior member

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    There was a large chorus of boos (for the conductor and his production team apparently) at last night's Met opening.

    From NYT
     
  12. ld111134

    ld111134 Senior member

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    My list is restricted to operas that I've actually seen, so it's rather limited

    Tosca (for me, it embodies everything that's great about opera)
    Carmen (a great "jukebox", crammed with wonderful melodies)
    Traviata
    Don Giovanni (especially the finale)
    Il Barbiere de Siviglia (who can't help but smile when hearing "Largo al factotum"?).
    Porgy and Bess (an unconventional choice, but I saw the Lyric Opera's production last year and was blow away - I had thought that it was just a glorified musical but it's a real opera)
    Turandot ("Nessun dorma"...)
    Das Rheingold (Got to include some Wagner)
    Giulio Cesare (I saw this with Danielle De Niese at Cleopatra)
    Lulu
     
  13. chorse123

    chorse123 Senior member

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    What a cranky piece!

    I've seen both the recent Mary Zimmerman productions and I thought the Lucia was great (and got a strong positive response, at least when I was there) but the Sonnambula was ridiculously bad. Dessay was fun, the sets were well designed for aesthetics, but it just plain didn't work--the idea was bad. As far as the Met being only interested in the over-done baroque set, there might be some truth to that. One of the best things I've ever seen there is the Dieter Dorn Tristan, which is a masterpiece of subtle, spare sets. But it led to a lawsuit by a patron...
     
  14. adambparker

    adambparker Senior member

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    What a cranky piece!
    Indeed. She definitely turns on the snark when she's annoyed. EDIT: Here is a broader review of the performance. Actually, the WSJ review seems to pretty much come to the same conclusion, once you get past the snark and exaggeration in the blog post -- it's a half-assed attempt that ends up failing both as regietheater and as a traditional production. I'll be interested to hear what you think once you've seen it.
     

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