Thread: Opera Small Talk

          
   
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  1. #2041
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) View Post
    Breaking news: Andrea Bocelli falls from his high horse

    http://www.msn.com/en-us/music/news/...aAq?li=BBnb7Kz

    Hm, OK, maybe not his *high* horse. But I couldn't resist.

    --------

    Also, he participated in an event in which a two-armed robot conducted the Lucca Symphony. Hm... OK. Will now robots replace conductors? Maybe it was just because no live conductor wanted to work with Bocelli so they had to get a robot.

    http://www.controldesign.com/industr...ony-orchestra/
    I had no idea he was blind. That makes falling from a horse even worse.

    What I never undestood is why Cecilia Bartoli has several CDs where she worked with Bocelli. Just does not seem a very good pairing.
    Necessities of life: food, water, air, shelter, and opera.

  2. #2042
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Florestan View Post
    What I never undestood is why Cecilia Bartoli has several CDs where she worked with Bocelli. Just does not seem a very good pairing.
    Money.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

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    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Festat's Avatar
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    At the risk of sounding really stupid, how does a blind man rides a horse?

  5. #2044
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Festat View Post
    At the risk of sounding really stupid, how does a blind man rides a horse?
    Good point. He would get knocked off by the first tree limb if someone isn't leading the horse the whole way.
    Necessities of life: food, water, air, shelter, and opera.

  6. #2045
    Opera Lively News Coordinator Top Contributor Member MAuer's Avatar
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    Horses are pretty smart creatures, and I'm guessing his mount has been well trained. There may be a particular area where he rides and the horse is familiar with the terrain.

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    Senior Member Involved Member Nemorino's Avatar
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    It had been my intention to review the fledgling San Antonio Opera's "Macbeth" with Nadja Michael. But the acoustics were *TERRIBLE* so I don't have many nice things to say. The Tobin Center was designed as a multi-purpose space, which already had me worried that non-amplified sound would be swallowed up. What I didn't expect was the opposite: it was loud and obscenely echoey. I could tell I was witnessing a special performance from Nadja, but it sounded like she was in a stadium bathroom.

    San Antonio has a lot to be proud of - the chorus especially is punching above its weight (probably? they sounded pretty good when they weren't being drowned out by the smear of orchestral noise) - but for the high ticket price, I'm going to have a hard time justifying seeing anything else at this space. [Oh snap! I just got an email feedback request. Somebody calm me down a bit before I hit reply! haha]

    And in other bad news for Texas, Houston Grand Opera will have to find a new home for the entirety of the next season due to flood damage from Hurricane Harvey. From past experience, they were smart enough to evacuate their basement of costumes and sets, but the flood waters surged past previous levels and swamped the stage and damaged critical components of the building. No one's sure yet where performances will take place.

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  10. #2047
    Opera Lively Media Consultant Top Contributor Member Ann Lander (sospiro)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nemorino View Post
    It had been my intention to review the fledgling San Antonio Opera's "Macbeth" with Nadja Michael. But the acoustics were *TERRIBLE* so I don't have many nice things to say. The Tobin Center was designed as a multi-purpose space, which already had me worried that non-amplified sound would be swallowed up. What I didn't expect was the opposite: it was loud and obscenely echoey. I could tell I was witnessing a special performance from Nadja, but it sounded like she was in a stadium bathroom.

    San Antonio has a lot to be proud of - the chorus especially is punching above its weight (probably? they sounded pretty good when they weren't being drowned out by the smear of orchestral noise) - but for the high ticket price, I'm going to have a hard time justifying seeing anything else at this space. [Oh snap! I just got an email feedback request. Somebody calm me down a bit before I hit reply! haha]

    And in other bad news for Texas, Houston Grand Opera will have to find a new home for the entirety of the next season due to flood damage from Hurricane Harvey. From past experience, they were smart enough to evacuate their basement of costumes and sets, but the flood waters surged past previous levels and swamped the stage and damaged critical components of the building. No one's sure yet where performances will take place.
    What a shame about the acoustics, you must be so disappointed. Nadja Michael was supposed to be singing Lady M in the Macbeth I saw in Amsterdam. She cancelled because she was ill and then her replacement cancelled for the same reason. The third Lady M wasn't very good but she got a sympathetic reception.

    I read that about Houston.

    Statement from Houston.

  11. #2048
    Opera Lively Staff Member Top Contributor Member Hoffmann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) View Post
    Breaking news: Andrea Bocelli falls from his high horse

    http://www.msn.com/en-us/music/news/...aAq?li=BBnb7Kz

    Hm, OK, maybe not his *high* horse. But I couldn't resist.

    --------

    Also, he participated in an event in which a two-armed robot conducted the Lucca Symphony. Hm... OK. Will now robots replace conductors? Maybe it was just because no live conductor wanted to work with Bocelli so they had to get a robot.

    http://www.controldesign.com/industr...ony-orchestra/

    Ummm, I hesitate to mention this but, reading the article, I have to ask: "Legendary tenor"?

  12. #2049
    Opera Lively Media Consultant Top Contributor Member Ann Lander (sospiro)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hoffmann View Post
    Ummm, I hesitate to mention this but, reading the article, I have to ask: "Legendary tenor"?
    Erm ...

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    Opera Lively Media Consultant Top Contributor Member Ann Lander (sospiro)'s Avatar
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    "Australia’s major opera companies will be fined up to $200,000 if they do not employ an “appropriate balance” of Australian versus non-Australian artists, after the Federal Government’s acceptance of most of the recommendations of its 2016 National Opera Review."

    https://dailyreview.com.au/opera-rev...ay-fair/65902/

    My two cents - I'm not interested in the nationality of a singer; I would just want an opera house and/or director to employ the best singer available for a particular role.

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    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ann Lander (sospiro) View Post
    "Australia’s major opera companies will be fined up to $200,000 if they do not employ an “appropriate balance” of Australian versus non-Australian artists, after the Federal Government’s acceptance of most of the recommendations of its 2016 National Opera Review."

    https://dailyreview.com.au/opera-rev...ay-fair/65902/

    My two cents - I'm not interested in the nationality of a singer; I would just want an opera house and/or director to employ the best singer available for a particular role.
    Would be better if they said they want Australians working in some proportion but leave it to the whole production, so that you can hire more Australians as stage hands etc. if you cannnot find enough Australian singers.
    Necessities of life: food, water, air, shelter, and opera.

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  18. #2052
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ann Lander (sospiro) View Post

    My two cents - I'm not interested in the nationality of a singer; I would just want an opera house and/or director to employ the best singer available for a particular role.
    At least in Sydney it doesn't matter because the acoustics of the opera house will swallow up anybody's voice. Waste of money employing the best.
    Natalie

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  20. #2053
    Opera Lively News Coordinator Top Contributor Member MAuer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ann Lander (sospiro) View Post
    My two cents - I'm not interested in the nationality of a singer; I would just want an opera house and/or director to employ the best singer available for a particular role.
    Absolutely!

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  22. #2054
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    Been super busy with classes, and haven't had much time for opera lately But! Got myself rush tickets to the Met Norma premiere, and here are some Beaujolais-fueled thoughts before going to bed:

    * At her Act 1 entrance, Radvanovsky sounded like she had a cold, and Casta Diva was quite rough, with significant timing issues (unclear how to apportion the credit for that between diva and conductor) and some strange volume effects (moving instantly between loud and soft in one note). Act 1 Scene 2 was lots better, and Act 2 was better still. Several times there were brief imperfections (like bubbles popping) in the voice when singing pianissimo high notes, I don't remember having previously heard similar things. Quite happy with everything after Casta Diva.

    * DiDonato killed it. The smaller voice wasn't too much of a problem in Act 1: the yurt duets with Norma and Pollione went off nicely, but she was less audible in the trio (Calleja overdid it?). Radvanovsky wasvlouder in Act 2, so the balance wasn't as good as it was in Act 1, but it wasn't a big problem for me (As predicted by the nice young man from Canada who sat next to me at the season closer Cyrano. As he pointed out, DiDonato's voice has a lot of higher frequencies to it and carries really well). She was my favorite of the night.

    * Radvanovsky and DiDonato have similar vibratos, voices blend really well. I loved the Act 1 Scene 2 duet where they sing about friendship, the female "Au fond du temple saint"?

    * Calleja very stiff during Act 1, interacted very little with his partners, and spent a lot of time singing above his partners' heads and making sure to twist the torso slightly towards the audience for high notes, so they'd hit the audience with best effect. Opening aria not at the same (good) musical standard as the rest, also the least intense "Va crudele" I've ever heard. Significantly more involved/less stiff during Act 2. I like his voice, am curious how it goes for him later in the run.

    * Clothilde had a nice dark sound, but quite a lot of tremolo. It'd be wearying to listen to her for more than a minute at a time.

    * No thoughts about Oroveso.

    * Radvanovsky mostly sang "Oh! non tremare" to the conductor and not to Calleja, hah.

    * The scene changes were done entirely with the stage elevator, which pushed the yurt stage up and down while the music continued playing. Thank god, there will be none of those 10 minute "brief pauses" between scenes like those which mar the Puritani production!

    * The supers did a number of weird walking affectations. Like cavemen? I can't think up a better description at the moment.

    * Pretty standard "chorus wears smocks, stands still in the back while supers wearing armor wave swords and smear themselves with blood from a bull's head and jerk around uncontrollably"-type traditional production. It was fine, I guess? As far as I could tell, McVicar didn't try to give us anything other than druids - nothing ventured, nothing gained.

    * Curtain had a giant moon on it.

    * People I recognized: Anna Chlumsky (from Veep), Duncan Rock (in town to sing Schaunard), Donald Palumbo (striding across the courtyard about 45 minutes before curtain), Jesse Tyler Ferguson (from Modern Family), Susanna Phillips (not so sure, was from a distance), and KEN GRIFFIN (hedge fund manager, he definitely noticed me taking a creeper photo of him from 5 feet away).

  23. #2055
    Opera Lively Media Consultant Top Contributor Member Ann Lander (sospiro)'s Avatar
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    ^^ Thanks for the write-up Dichteurehalle. Love this sort of review, hot off the presses as it were.

    Poor Oroveso. I'd only see Norma if it was one of my favourite singers in this role.

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