What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?

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drjjpdc

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Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #40 on: 25 Feb 2012, 02:21 pm »
Oh BTW, aside from the great cast and singing, do not miss the Met Manon. Anna Netrebko in a glorious red dress, what else to say! :wink:

jimdgoulding

Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #41 on: 28 Feb 2012, 07:23 am »
Tonite, and again, I Pagliacci- Teatro Alla Scala (DG, 1966). 

woodsyi

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Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #42 on: 28 Feb 2012, 03:51 pm »
Tonite, and again, I Pagliacci- Teatro Alla Scala (DG, 1966).

Jim,

Bergonzi is a great professional singer and this recording is good but I would highly recommend the 1953 RCA Victor recording with Jussi Björling, Victoria de los Ángeles and Leonard Warren.  All three are in top form on this one.  Jussi's Vesti La Giubba is arguably the best ever.  I like Caruso and Gigli too but I don't believe there are complete operas preserved in recording featuring these greats. 

drjjpdc

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Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #43 on: 28 Feb 2012, 05:06 pm »
Woodsyi,

I totally agree, the Bjoerling Pagliacci is one of the glories of the 20th century. Add in de los Angeles, Warren and Serafin (I think) conducting and you have a sure fire hit.   Actually I would rank Jussi right next to Caruso. The main problem is that there are so few really good recordings of Caruso's voice, but even with that caveat, he still sounds good enough to jump past Jussi. To me Caruso has more power and a bit darker that suits those Verdi roles very well. Now Jussi has a more bell like tone for the lighter Italian roles, the French and of course those great Puccini tenor roles.   

jimdgoulding

Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #44 on: 29 Feb 2012, 01:36 am »
Hey, thanks, gents.  I really like the recording of the orchestra on my copy.  I have heard "Vesti la Guibba" sung more powerfully and it deserves to be sung powerfully, imo.  I take it the RCA is mono? 

drjjpdc

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Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #45 on: 29 Feb 2012, 04:00 am »
Jim and Wood,

Thanks for this discussion. It made me look up a few things, like how an RCA opera wound up on EMI. Here's the explanation.

In 1953, he recorded the role of Turiddu in a complete version of Cavalleria Rusticana opposite Milanov for RCA Victor, but because Victoria de los Ángeles was under contract to EMI, the recording of the complete Pagliacci, made concurrently with Cavalleria, was not released by RCA, but by EMI. Robert Merrill appeared on both albums, but Leonard Warren was featured only on the Pagliacci one, as Tonio.

Pretty cool. BTW yes it is in mono (very good mono) but if you want the best CD of it, get the 1998 remastering. It was also made in 1989, but that mastering job wasn't so hot. The difference is the 1989 has the original EMI colors (mainly white with some blue stars), while the 1998 copy has a picture of Bjoerling as Canio. Hope this helps.

jimdgoulding

Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #46 on: 29 Feb 2012, 09:48 pm »
On vinyl?  Thanks.

drjjpdc

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Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #47 on: 29 Feb 2012, 11:43 pm »
Jim,

Actually I have the Seraphim LP's in mono as well as the 1998 re-master job on CD. When I looked on Amazon the LP's are still available. I think for about $12.00. So you can pick your poison.

coverto

Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #48 on: 1 Mar 2012, 04:16 am »
Saw the Met Gotterdamerung on 02/11/2012 at my local AMC theater. Started at 12 and finished around 6PM. I heard some whiners complaining about little things price of ticket ($22), sound, etc. I tore into them between acts. They should be thanking their lucky stars that AMC was generous enough to share a theater, where they could have shown (3) 2 hour movies during the time for one Gotter. BTW, the theater was filled and not just with old farts.

Now the important stuff; the voices were great. The women in the audience were very much loving the Siegfried with bare arms, partial chest and long blond hair. The men were also happy with the Brunnehilde and Gutrune, both with ample bosoms and equally low cut outfits. I thought Hagen was a bit stiff, but Alberich was slimy and evil.

The orchestra played very well. Most of the story that Wagner incorporated into the Ring was well integrated but the business about Siegfried switching to Gutrune and Gunther getting Brunnehilde is pretty weak and when Brunehilde swears a death oath for Siegfried on Hagen's spear, it's a pretty quick flip-flop from the undying love duet at the beginning of Act 1.

A funny Wagner moment was done with good timing, when Siegfried captures/conquests Brunnehilde disguised as Gunther. Later on he is accused of taking advantage while in disguise and pleads his case by singing he placed his sword between him and Brunnehilde while in her bedchamber for honesty. Brunnehilde sings back that she knows what Nothung (his sword) looks like, she also saw it on the wall and that was no sword she felt between them!  :lol:

Man - I came THIS close to seeing that the other week, hate that I missed it. I did get tix to Das Rheingold for this April, however.

I went with my wife to see Philip Glass' "Satyagraha" recently, and it was one of the most enjoyable opera experiences we've ever had. Was also kind of cool to be sitting a couple of rows behind Lou Reed and Laurie Anderson.  8)

shooter

Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #49 on: 1 Mar 2012, 04:29 am »
Saw Tristan & Isolde at the Dallas Opera last week, production was incredible, they use projectors to create ocean and waves on to the stage for the 3rd act, most amazing. The singing was only ok.
Right now about half way through 1953 The Krauss Ring, a total of 14 CDs.

drjjpdc

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Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #50 on: 1 Mar 2012, 06:20 am »
Coverto,
Even though encores for Siegfried and Gotter are not officially announced, I have written correspondence from the Met that they will be added, maybe the late spring early summer. If you haven't seen Manon or Traviata get tickets because it's a great cast.

Shooter,
Krauss is OK for me, but I am a Keilberth man. Mainly 1955 for the glorious singing, everyone in the Solti cast basically but 10 years younger! Hotter was unfreakin' believable, in Die Walkure.

Lastly, sad to inform that the Met Faust had the worst set design in history! It looked like a concentration camp diary (the Diary of Anne Frank had more love and joy than this turkey!). The flowers in the background of the second act looked like some Baz Luhrman nightmare from the flick with Nicole Kidman. The 2nd act is supposed to be a love scene (even though the devil was behind it) and it had about the same level of romance as a steel frame of a skyscraper. Truly sorry I went, but glad I saw it at the movies and did not pay for a Met ticket.

jimdgoulding

Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #51 on: 1 Mar 2012, 07:02 am »
Thanks, mate.  I'll look for the Seraphim.  Let you know.

drjjpdc

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Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #52 on: 1 Mar 2012, 03:11 pm »
Jim,

Another reason to get the old LP's is that sides 1-3 contain the opera and side 4 has other arias by Jussi. The CD's are convenient but the LP's have more music.

John

woodsyi

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Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #53 on: 1 Mar 2012, 09:15 pm »
Got me to listen to 3 Pagliaccis I have on vinyl featuring Bergonzi, Björling and Correlli.  I also listened to renditions of Recita...Vesti La Giubba by Caruso, Gigli, Del Monaco, and Di Stefano on vinyl;  Domingo and Pavarotti on CDs. 

Caruso, Björling, Del Monaco, Correlli, Gigli, Di Stefano, Domingo, Bergonzi and Pavarotti  are in order of my preference.  It's really a dramatic spinto role and you need at least a spinto voice to express the right emotion.  Jussi Björling is exceptional in that he can carry this off from a lyrical tessitura. 

Having said all this, they are all good.  I enjoyed listening to all of them. 
« Last Edit: 1 Mar 2012, 11:20 pm by woodsyi »

jimdgoulding

Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #54 on: 1 Mar 2012, 09:59 pm »
Just ordered the Bjorling.  Thank you very much, fellas.  One of only 3 on LP at Amazon.  $12.00.  You can bet I will clean and treat it and, then, play it! :angel: :angel:

Wood, how the heck did you get those double dots over the O in Bjorling?

coverto

Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #55 on: 10 Mar 2012, 02:07 pm »
Coverto,
Even though encores for Siegfried and Gotter are not officially announced, I have written correspondence from the Met that they will be added, maybe the late spring early summer. If you haven't seen Manon or Traviata get tickets because it's a great cast.

Yeah, I did catch Traviata last fall with Marina Poplavskaya - probably the most amazing opera performance I've ever witnessed first-hand. No, definitely the most amazing, actually... If she's doing a reprise, I'd be tempted.

Meanwhile, managed to grab tickets for Das Rheingold next month, I'm very happy to say.

jimdgoulding

Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #56 on: 13 Mar 2012, 03:55 am »
The Seraphim mono I Pagliacci arrived today from a chap named Phillip Curtis aka "philsroadkill" by way of Amazon.  It was advertised as used, good condition, $12.00.  Out of the box it looked very good and like it had been cleaned already.  Playback is very quiet, almost new like.  Thanks, Phil who lives north of Dallas.  Happy camper here.

I hadn't realized that one conductor could be so different from another.  I couldn't tell where "Vesti la Guibba" began, for example, and even some notes sounded different in the orchestra pretty often, I thought.  But, the singers, oh, you guys are right.  De los Angeles seems so comfortable and her voice is pure grace and power.  Merrill sounds like he eats nails for breakfast, no problem.  BIG, warm voice.  And Bjorling is the most stirring Canio I've ever heard.  I might prefer a little warmer tone but he can BRING the emotion and take the loudest notes to the rafters, I have no doubt.

Thanks for turning me on to this one.  I'll listen to it side by side with my '69 DG stereo release tomorrow night.  But, I DO prefer the singing on this one, you bet.  That I can say right now. 


jimdgoulding

Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #57 on: 14 Mar 2012, 03:20 am »
So, in fairness to the singers on my DG copy is that the DG is in stereo and I think they were miked at greater distance to create the experience of listening in the hall itself.  For that reason, and because the engineering is so successful to include the orchestra, it will remain my go to record.  But, the vocals are powerful and the singing superb to me on the Seraphim.  Like I've said already, I've never heard a more stirring Canio and that goes for the rest of the cast, too.  Thank you guys, again.  I will be playing this many more times.  I have yet to here the second act, but will remedy that soon.

Doc, Bjoerling had my heart in my throat on "Donna non vidi mai!" from Puccini's Manon Lescalt from the operatic excerpts on Side Four.  I'll be coming back to these, too.

woodsyi

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Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #58 on: 14 Mar 2012, 01:37 pm »
Jim,

I hear you about the orchestra.  I love this Aida (1959 DECCA SXL 2167/9 WB) because Karajan really gets gorgeous music out of the orchestra.  I mean the singers are great, especially Tebaldi and Simonato but the orchestra is what makes this one special.  The Marcia trionfale really is triumphant.  Karajan with orchestra is like the tubes -- lush, beautiful and romantic at best and slow and bloated at worst.  In this one he is lush and beautiful. :thumb:

jimdgoulding

Re: What Opera have you heard (or seen?) recently?
« Reply #59 on: 14 Mar 2012, 07:10 pm »
That's another I don't have, Rim, but will remedy that, PDQ.  Thanks.