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  1. #526
    Opera Lively News Coordinator Top Contributor Member MAuer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jephtha View Post
    And Ileana Cotrubas was renowned for her views on this subject. She would work with anyone, but if she and the director could not come to a meeting of the minds, or if she felt he was misrepresenting the work in question, she would walk out. She did this quite often.
    Sherrill Milnes once put the brakes on a director who wanted to have Don Giovanni masturbating onstage by threatening to leave the production. And I vaguely recall Montserrat Caballé making a similar threat when a director tried to change Santuzza's character in a way with which Mme. Caballé did not agree.

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  3. #527
    Staff Writer & Reviewer - Life-time Donor Veteran Member Jephtha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MAuer View Post
    Sherrill Milnes once put the brakes on a director who wanted to have Don Giovanni masturbating onstage by threatening to leave the production. And I vaguely recall Montserrat Caballé making a similar threat when a director tried to change Santuzza's character in a way with which Mme. Caballé did not agree.
    Lanfranco Rasponi relates that Renata Tebaldi would always co-operate with the director in rehearsals, murmuring 'Si, si' and nodding her head demurely. Then at the performance, she would ignore his instructions and interpret the role as she thought it should be done. Truly an iron hand in a velvet glove.
    How far that little candle throws his beams!
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  4. #528
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Dark_Angel's Avatar
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    Amazon USA recently raised the shipping cost for Cds to $3.99 each(from $2.99), very bad news for sellers and buyers of used/new CDs.

    I buy/sell many used CDs at Amazon and this will really change my future activity with Amazon, $2.99 was more than generous shipping cost for single CD, $3.99 each CD is outrageous charge especially for cheaper used CDs with no discount for multiple CD purchase

    The winner is Amazon since this "forces" more people to join Amazon Prime for free shipping on new CDs, and increase use of lower quality MP3 digital downloads VS buying physical CDs

    Presto UK can ship international to me in USA for $3 first CD and only $1 each additional CD, Amazon is trying to kill used CD market with extreme high shipping costs.......

  5. #529
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Worse, Amazon is supporting the Federal Government's push to collect state taxes in all online sales - for me, a 7.25% increase in all expenses related to Amazon buys (which I use extensively not only for music but for many other items, even groceries).
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  6. #530
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Dark_Angel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Almaviva View Post
    Worse, Amazon is supporting the Federal Government's push to collect state taxes in all online sales - for me, a 7.25% increase in all expenses related to Amazon buys (which I use extensively not only for music but for many other items, even groceries).
    There seems to be a good chance that will eventually pass, more troubles in Amazon buyer paradise

  7. #531
    Opera Lively News Coordinator Top Contributor Member MAuer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Almaviva View Post
    Worse, Amazon is supporting the Federal Government's push to collect state taxes in all online sales - for me, a 7.25% increase in all expenses related to Amazon buys (which I use extensively not only for music but for many other items, even groceries).
    I have to report online purchases to the state of Ohio when I file my tax return, anyway, so this wouldn't really affect me one way or the other. The folks in Columbus either get my money now, or they get it next winter (or I get less of a refund.) Now the increased shipping charge DOES tick me off.

  8. #532
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Breaking News - Santa Fe Opera's new chief conductor (succeeding our interviewee Frederic Chaslin) is British early music specialist Harry Bicket, who is currently conducting Giulio Cesare at the Met (literally, as we speak, since he's conducting the show right now which is on Met Live in HD - I didn't go to a movie theater since I'll be watching the show live on 4/30).

    MAuer will be delighted to know that in the Summer of 2014 Santa Fe Opera under the Maestro's baton will be presenting a Stephen Wadsworth production of... FIDELIO!!!

    MAuer, it's your favorite opera! I'm sure you won't want to miss that; it's not every day that Fidelio is staged in America!

    Continuing Santa Fe's tradition of premieres (they are doing the world premiere of Oscar this summer and I'll be in attendance) the new Chief Conductor will also be at the helm of the American premiere of Dr. Sun Yat-Sen by Huang Ruo in 2014.

    The one thing that worries me is that Maestro Bicket is a busy man. He is delegating the other three 2014 operas to guest conductors. Maestro Chaslin was really very present there, shaping up the orchestra, which was in relatively poor shape when he started his tenure, and made some impressive strides under his leadership. I hope Maestro Bicket will continue to fine-tune Santa Fe's orchestra - this is an outstanding opera company with very impressive stagings and they hire great singers; I'm very fond of them, and will be attending all five operas this Summer Festival - the orchestra lags behind a little, and I'd love to see it evolving to world class standards. So, the choice is good, they got a very competent conductor (a regular at the Royal Opera House and Glyndebourne, and the head of the period ensemble English Concert), but we need him there. I'm not sure he'll be consistently there.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  9. #533
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dark_Angel View Post
    Amazon USA recently raised the shipping cost for Cds to $3.99 each(from $2.99), very bad news for sellers and buyers of used/new CDs.

    I buy/sell many used CDs at Amazon and this will really change my future activity with Amazon, $2.99 was more than generous shipping cost for single CD, $3.99 each CD is outrageous charge especially for cheaper used CDs with no discount for multiple CD purchase

    The winner is Amazon since this "forces" more people to join Amazon Prime for free shipping on new CDs, and increase use of lower quality MP3 digital downloads VS buying physical CDs

    Presto UK can ship international to me in USA for $3 first CD and only $1 each additional CD, Amazon is trying to kill used CD market with extreme high shipping costs.......
    Try buying from New Zealand - Shipping cost are $14.29 for CDs and DVDs from sellers. So I buy from Presto, and don't bother with second-hand because the shipping is inevitably higher than the item cost.

    On the other hand no taxes (touch wood) on deliveries under NZ$400. And Presto automatically takes off UK VAT.
    Natalie

  10. #534
    Opera Lively News Coordinator Top Contributor Member MAuer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Almaviva View Post
    MAuer will be delighted to know that in the Summer of 2014 Santa Fe Opera under the Maestro's baton will be presenting a Stephen Wadsworth production of... FIDELIO!!!

    MAuer, it's your favorite opera! I'm sure you won't want to miss that; it's not every day that Fidelio is staged in America!
    I'll definitely need to think about it. Leonore and Florestan are being sung by Alex Penda (a.k.a. Alexandrina Pendatchanska) and Paul Groves -- voices on the more lyrical side, which is the way I prefer it. In fact, Groves is such a pure lyric voice that I'm wondering if this might be the opera's original 1805 version.

  11. #535
    Senior Member Veteran Member Aksel's Avatar
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    Not really sure I'd call La Pendatchanska an especially lyrical voice, considering the fact that the woman is a dramatic coloratura.

  12. #536
    Staff Writer & Reviewer - Life-time Donor Veteran Member Jephtha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MAuer View Post
    I'll definitely need to think about it. Leonore and Florestan are being sung by Alex Penda (a.k.a. Alexandrina Pendatchanska) and Paul Groves -- voices on the more lyrical side, which is the way I prefer it. In fact, Groves is such a pure lyric voice that I'm wondering if this might be the opera's original 1805 version.
    Ernst Haefliger and Peter Schreier(in concert, only)both did very well by Florestan, and they were both lyric tenors. I think this is exciting casting.
    How far that little candle throws his beams!
    So shines a good deed in a naughty world.


    The Merchant of Venice, V, i.

  13. #537
    Opera Lively News Coordinator Top Contributor Member MAuer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aksel View Post
    Not really sure I'd call La Pendatchanska an especially lyrical voice, considering the fact that the woman is a dramatic coloratura.
    Actually, just the right voice for Leonore.

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  15. #538
    Opera Lively News Coordinator Top Contributor Member MAuer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jephtha View Post
    Ernst Haefliger and Peter Schreier(in concert, only)both did very well by Florestan, and they were both lyric tenors. I think this is exciting casting.
    I have the Fricsay recording with Haefliger, and enjoy listening to him. Personally, I'd much rather hear a lyric tenor in this role than one of those huge Hochdramatische voices.

  16. #539
    Senior Member Veteran Member Aksel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MAuer View Post
    Actually, just the right voice for Leonore.
    I quite agree. The Salome she did recently was reportedly most excellent.

  17. #540
    Opera Lively Staff Member Top Contributor Member Hoffmann's Avatar
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    I'm back home after a couple of weeks doing the Ring Cycle at the Berliner Staatsoper and a few other performances there, plus my first visit to Vienna and the Wiener Staatsoper. As a bonus, it was a real pleasure to once again be able to browse at length in real music stores, which still exist in Berlin and Vienna (and, I'm sure, other European cities), though prices are very high.

    I will write up reviews of the performances/productions, though it probably will take me a couple of days:

    Berliner Staatsoper:

    1 - 4. Der Ring des Niebelungen
    5. Der Freischütz
    6. La Finta Giardiniera
    7. Der Fliegende Holländer

    Wiener Staatsoper:

    8. La Boheme

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