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  1. #676
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Have you been to it? I have. The Bard SummerScape festival is outstanding. The venue is spectacular (one of the most beautiful theaters I've ever seen - a Frank Gehry-designed building), the leadership is made of great people (both competent, and friendly), the productions are great, the orchestral playing is exquisite, the festive environment of the Spiegeltent for the after parties is lots of fun, and that region of the state is beautiful and full of attractions (wine, gastronomy, beautiful countryside). I highly recommend it.

    Click [here] for information and tickets. They usually do an opera off the beaten path, fully staged (and *very* competently staged, like, state-of-the-art, world-class), and a concert opera. This 2013 festival, the fully staged opera will be Oresteia, by Sergei Taneyev, a golden opportunity for you to see Russian opera in America.

    It's very tempting, I'd love to go again, but this year I'm kind of busy with other plans. If I don't go this year, I'll be attentive to subsequent years since this festival is one of the most rewarding experiences for this sort of thing.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  2. #677
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tyroneslothrop View Post
    This can only be the first of these articles. This one is from her perspective. I agree that we haven't yet heard from his side.

    If this is false, this will destroy his career--or at the very least, very seriously damage it, for much the same reasons as you mentioned above. Perhaps I just have never understood the side of human nature where one person tries to destroy another out of spite. And since I don't understand it, and am too trusting that human nature is good, I think the best thing for me to do is to shutup on this entire topic until more information comes in. But all I can say about this though is:
    You mean, if this is false, or if this is true?

    Maybe thanks (!) to my profession, the darkest side of human nature doesn't surprise me that much, any longer. I've seen scorned lovers do much worse to destroy the other party - up to and including murder. So I don't put anything past anyone, in these matters. The emotions involved in a divorce and the bitter feelings regarding an ex often get the best out of people and lead to very destructive behaviors.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  3. #678
    Opera Lively Coordinator - Donor Member Top Contributor Member tyroneslothrop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Almaviva View Post
    You mean, if this is false, or if this is true?

    Maybe thanks (!) to my profession, the darkest side of human nature doesn't surprise me that much, any longer. I've seen scorned lovers do much worse to destroy the other party - up to and including murder. So I don't put anything past anyone, in these matters. The emotions involved in a divorce and the bitter feelings regarding an ex often get the best out of people and lead to very destructive behaviors.
    I meant false, because if it is false, it will destroy his career, but it will have been simply out of spite. But if true, it also destroys his career, but perhaps it could be said that he deserves it in that case. Unless he can definitively prove this is false, this issue will follow him and his career will suffer as a result.

    But on reflection, any man who numbers his ex-wife among his best friends probably has no right to speak knowledgeably about this topic at all, so I will just shut my mouth until more info come in.

  4. #679
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tyroneslothrop View Post
    It depends on the crew they get for the opera. They have no in-house directors, so everyone is an itinerant player. Just considering my last 3 operas there:
    • Bizet's Les pêcheurs de perles: complete unacceptable
    • Previn's A Streetcar Named Desire: excellent
    • Mozart's Le nozze di Figaro: so-so, but the student's at GMU sing better


    Wow, they did an excellent A Streetcar Named Desire? Well, that's something, since that very mediocre opera (in my opinion) would be a tough piece to make something compelling out of it. My respect for them would improve.



    BTW, I'm always suspicious when people make statements like this:
    Well, this kind of statement these days applies to pretty much any opera company. It doesn't necessarily mean trouble.

    Just saying, but of course you know this company much better than I do. I've actually never attended any of their productions, although some are held in venues that are accessible to me (Richmond, two and a half hours away from my home, and Roanoke, three hours and thirty minutes, but half an hour from a place I visit very often - Blacksburg, where my son attends college). I've made plans to attend, then impediments kicked in. But then, I got discouraged and didn't renew plans, exactly because of *your* low opinion of the company...
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  5. #680
    Opera Lively Coordinator - Donor Member Top Contributor Member tyroneslothrop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Almaviva View Post
    Wow, they did an excellent A Streetcar Named Desire? Well, that's something, since that very mediocre opera (in my opinion) would be a tough piece to make something compelling out of it. My respect for them would improve.
    Well, note I am judging their performance, including singing. Not judging here the merits of the opera. It is interesting but not one of my favorites. Nonetheless, I've heard people say it is atonal, and that just means they don't know what atonal means.

    Quote Originally Posted by Almaviva View Post
    Well, this kind of statement these days applies to pretty much any opera company. It doesn't necessarily mean trouble.

    Just saying, but of course you know this company much better than I do. I've actually never attended any of their productions, although some are held in venues that are accessible to me (Richmond, two and a half hours away from my home, and Roanoke, three hours and thirty minutes, but half an hour from a place I visit very often - Blacksburg, where my son attends college). I've made plans to attend, then impediments kicked in. But then, I got discouraged and didn't renew plans, exactly because of *your* low opinion of the company...
    Yes, VA Opera is perhaps worth going 30 minutes to see (my case), but a 2.5 hour trip will leave you disappointed, unless you luck out with a good production. As I said, its impossible to predict in advance since it depends on who they get to direct for any given performance and what cast they are able to sign up. You might wait until the reviews come in and then decide for a performance. Do avoid any French Grand Operas though. They have no ability to get any dancers so they will cut any such opera to shreds just to conform with their capabilities.

  6. #681
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tyroneslothrop View Post
    I meant false, because if it is false, it will destroy his career, but it will have been simply out of spite. But if true, it also destroys his career, but perhaps it could be said that he deserves it in that case. Unless he can definitively prove this is false, this issue will follow him and his career will suffer as a result.

    But on reflection, any man who numbers his ex-wife among his best friends probably has no right to speak knowledgeably about this topic at all, so I will just shut my mouth until more info come in.
    LOL for your second phrase...

    Although, that's actually the desired outcome. You're to be commended. I wasn't as lucky when I divorced my first wife. We did not remain friends. But we didn't do anything nasty against each other, either. Just, no interested in being her friend, and the same applies to her end.

    But back to the article, I think there is still a twist in this: if it is false, but Roberto can prove it is false, then it will backfire on Angela...

    And another interesting point regarding the journalist who authored this article - anybody who pulls in Posh and Becks as an example, will have my suspicion... LOL. So, this journalist got a bad start with the subtitle, then claimed Angela is the most celebrated opera singer in the world, then compared the couple to Posh and Becks... [I know, I'm in an elitist streak]... At this point, one starts to even question if *Angela* indeed said everything that the journalist said she did, or if her words were twisted a bit to make the article more sensational. Anything is possible. To be continued...
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  7. #682
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Goodness I'd be p'd off if I had Fanciulla tickets and had to go to Carmen or Magic flute instead.
    Natalie

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  9. #683
    Opera Lively Coordinator - Donor Member Top Contributor Member tyroneslothrop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Almaviva View Post
    But back to the article, I think there is still a twist in this: if it is false, but Roberto can prove it is false, then it will backfire on Angela...
    Which immediately made me think of this rather extreme and extraordinary case. But yes, I agree. If it can be proven to have no basis, especially definitively, then yes, she will be the one to suffer the consequences.

  10. #684
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tyroneslothrop View Post
    Which immediately made me think of this rather extreme and extraordinary case. But yes, I agree. If it can be proven to have no basis, especially definitively, then yes, she will be the one to suffer the consequences.
    Oh wow! And a good-looking lady, to boot! But we should be careful, here. This case is laced with explosive material, and probably we shouldn't discuss it, given that on Opera Lively politics is a banned topic.

    Regarding Roberto, the sad thing for him if this is all false, is that he most probably won't be able to dispel the cloud of doubt. If this is a sneaky attack on his reputation out of spite, she is likely to succeed, given that it would be a "he said, she said" situation that wouldn't be clarified either way, but people would likely side with the alleged victim rather than with the alleged perpetrator, and would not be able to adopt the "innocent until proven guilty" mind set. I could see some booing going on, and then opera houses shying away from hiring him. Bad, very bad.

    So yes, maybe his career will take a big hit either way - deservedly so if true, and unfairly so if untrue - but I can't see very well how he'd be able to come out of it unscathed.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  11. #685
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    Goodness I'd be p'd off if I had Fanciulla tickets and had to go to Carmen or Magic flute instead.
    I'd be glad... unlike you, I'm not a big fan of Fanciulla although I recognize its musical merits. And regardless of overexposure, I still love to see Carmen or Magic Flute live. Of course, if it's a good production. According to Tyrone, it's a lottery, up there, and there's nothing more irritating than attending a bad Carmen or a bad Magic Flute.

    And back to A Streetcar Named Desire - no, it's not atonal. It's just *bad*, musically. Unimaginative. It doesn't add anything to the stage play, which is a very good play. I'd rather see the play without the music. This is one failed experiment in setting a good play to music, in my opinion.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  12. #686
    Opera Lively Coordinator - Donor Member Top Contributor Member tyroneslothrop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Almaviva View Post
    Of course, if it's a good production. According to Tyrone, it's a lottery, up there, and there's nothing more irritating than attending a bad Carmen or a bad Magic Flute.
    Well, the so-so performance I attended was Le nozze di Figaro, which is so much a part of the standard repertoire that soloists learn it by heart as students at the conservatory! That it ended up only as so-so, and when it was apparent to us that only a few days later, GMU students (performing Die Zauberflöte as their semester project) did a better job with their arias, this is just not very good for the company.

  13. #687
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Oh wait, whoa. I was re-reading, and I don't know how I missed it the first time, but she did claim actual physical violence: "Even if you are the most angry person, to stand and give a clap on your wife..."

    OK, now, I take back what I said. It's not that she is just implying some sort of violence which could have been psychological. She is actually saying that he slapped her. That's different.

    I do hope for Roberto's sake that he can disprove it if she is lying, but being specific rather than issuing some vague insinuations does increase her credibility, I think. If her father and brother come forward and add specific descriptions, Roberto is in trouble.

    I don't know what the laws in France are. Apparently, in the UK, this kind of thing it subject to police investigation even without a formal complaint. Case in point, the famous female chef Nigella Lawson's husband who was caught taking his hand to her neck during an argument. He first denied it, said it was just some rough play, she didn't file any complaint, but still, the police investigated; he then confirmed it, and was slapped with a misdemeanor.

    So, if laws in France are similar and someone decides to investigate in order to reprehend him, than he is in double trouble.
    Last edited by Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva); July 2nd, 2013 at 02:24 AM.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  14. #688
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Almaviva View Post
    But I said, *if* this is true. First of all, she mentions violence but doesn't specify what went on. Is this psychological violence? Yelling and being nasty? Or did he hit her? She never makes it clear. The article of course wants to be sensational and says "and left her unable to sing" in the sub-header. It implies that he beat her up so badly that she couldn't sing. Well, that's not what she said. She said that all the screaming and crying made her tired and unable to sing. So, in terms of ethical journalism, this article is suspicious. It's the kind of shiny headline intended to make waves. I don't like this kind of journalism.
    .
    Reading between the lines - she talks about a clap - is that he once slapped her in front of his father and brother and they did nothing.

    Also, in the matter of tantrums and cancellations, we've had a lot more of these coming from Angela than from Roberto; she is the one who unfortunately has gathered a reputation for some unstable behavior, rather than him.
    On the whole yes - although he did walk out IN THE MIDDLE of a performance of Aida leaning the mezzo high and dry with some poor understudy having to go on in his jeans as a replacement.
    Natalie

  15. #689
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    Reading between the lines - she talks about a clap - is that he once slapped her in front of his father and brother and they did nothing.
    Yep, I noticed that five minutes before you posted, probably our posts crossed each other. No, it doesn't look good. Then I edited, to add the part about UK-French laws.

    On the whole yes - although he did walk out IN THE MIDDLE of a performance of Aida leaning the mezzo high and dry with some poor understudy having to go on in his jeans as a replacement.
    True, but they were booing him. It was at La Scala, right? Sometimes the public there overdoes it. I can empathize with artists in this kind of situation. If the booing gets too loud during the performance, it becomes impossible to perform and maybe the appropriate response *is* to walk out.

    But anyway, if he did slap his wife - and she seems to imply that it was something that was going on for years - then he's lost all my respect.

    But LOL, some poor understudy? In my understanding, the understudies are delighted to be given a chance to step in.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  16. #690
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Almaviva View Post
    But LOL, some poor understudy? In my understanding, the understudies are delighted to be given a chance to step in.
    Yes you are right. My sympathies are more with the mezzo, who kind of does a double take at the sight of the new dude, and then keeps on singing gallantly.

    Last edited by Soave_Fanciulla; July 2nd, 2013 at 06:03 AM.
    Natalie

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