Thread: Opera Small Talk

          
   
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  1. #1456
    Opera Lively Media Consultant Top Contributor Member Ann Lander (sospiro)'s Avatar
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    A question to all those who like Written on Skin.

    It's not an opera I know at all but there's a concert performance on at the Barbican next March and I was wondering if this opera would work as a concert?
    "The world calls them its singers and poets and artists and storytellers; but they are just people who have never forgotten the way to fairyland."
    Lucy Maud Montgomery

  2. #1457
    Senior Member Veteran Member Povero Buoso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sospiro View Post
    A question to all those who like Written on Skin.

    It's not an opera I know at all but there's a concert performance on at the Barbican next March and I was wondering if this opera would work as a concert?
    I'm not sure if it would work as a concert too well. A lot of whats great about Written on Skin is how the characters interact with the world and each other. In addition if you're not overly familiar with the piece it may be somewhat confusing. That being said if you have a chance to see a DVD such as the ROH Performance (recommended) and become familiar with it I'd definitely attend given that two of the leads are the original performers.

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    Opera Lively Media Consultant Top Contributor Member Ann Lander (sospiro)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Povero Buoso View Post
    I'm not sure if it would work as a concert too well. A lot of whats great about Written on Skin is how the characters interact with the world and each other. In addition if you're not overly familiar with the piece it may be somewhat confusing. That being said if you have a chance to see a DVD such as the ROH Performance (recommended) and become familiar with it I'd definitely attend given that two of the leads are the original performers.
    Thanks, PB, that's what I thought. I might get the DVD then.
    "The world calls them its singers and poets and artists and storytellers; but they are just people who have never forgotten the way to fairyland."
    Lucy Maud Montgomery

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    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sospiro View Post
    A question to all those who like Written on Skin.

    It's not an opera I know at all but there's a concert performance on at the Barbican next March and I was wondering if this opera would work as a concert?
    If they do it semi staged like the one you and I saw it will be fine. The two principals are the people who created the roles, and I can guarantee that Barbara Hannigan will not be standing still behind a music stand. My view is you would be mad to miss it. I know you'll get to know the music before you hear it, and I reckon it's more accessible than King Roger.
    Natalie

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    Opera Lively Media Consultant Top Contributor Member Ann Lander (sospiro)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    If they do it semi staged like the one you and I saw it will be fine. The two principals are the people who created the roles, and I can guarantee that Barbara Hannigan will not be standing still behind a music stand. My view is you would be mad to miss it. I know you'll get to know the music before you hear it, and I reckon it's more accessible than King Roger.
    Thanks Nat. I'll get the DVD.
    "The world calls them its singers and poets and artists and storytellers; but they are just people who have never forgotten the way to fairyland."
    Lucy Maud Montgomery

  8. #1461
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sospiro View Post
    Thanks Nat. I'll get the DVD.
    Annie, I've seen Written on Skin twice in concert and once with the fully staged Katie Mitchell production, not to forget the Aix-en-Provence broadcast and the blu-ray from the ROH (I've watched the latter many times).

    While sure, like with most operas, the fully staged production is even better, I found that both concert performances I attended were almost as effective - this includes the Tanglewood performance with student singers, as well as the Toronto performance with Barbara Hannigan and Christopher Purves.

    It's no secret how much I like this work. I think it is musically so good that it works perfectly well as a concert. Its music is very beautiful, and as usual for all operas, if you get good singers and a good orchestra, the aural environment works better live than it does in recordings and DVDs.

    Do get the DVD, but do attend the concert as well, I'd say.

    This is in my opinion simply the best contemporary opera of the last several decades. It's a true masterpiece in *all* aspects (orchestration, vocal writing, libretto, theatricality) so it works well in any form (even by student singers, and much more, with an accomplished, extraordinary artist like Barbara Hannigan).

    I was fascinated when I heard it in concert (both times), and fascinated when I saw it fully staged.

    For me, any live performance of Written on Skin, concert or staged, is an occasion not to be missed.
    "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 Media Consultant Top Contributor Member Ann Lander (sospiro)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) View Post
    Annie, I've seen Written on Skin twice in concert and once with the fully staged Katie Mitchell production, not to forget the Aix-en-Provence broadcast and the blu-ray from the ROH (I've watched the latter many times).

    While sure, like with most operas, the fully staged production is even better, I found that both concert performances I attended were almost as effective - this includes the Tanglewood performance with student singers, as well as the Toronto performance with Barbara Hannigan and Christopher Purves.

    It's no secret how much I like this work. I think it is musically so good that it works perfectly well as a concert. Its music is very beautiful, and as usual for all operas, if you get good singers and a good orchestra, the aural environment works better live than it does in recordings and DVDs.

    Do get the DVD, but do attend the concert as well, I'd say.

    This is in my opinion simply the best contemporary opera of the last several decades. It's a true masterpiece in *all* aspects (orchestration, vocal writing, libretto, theatricality) so it works well in any form (even by student singers, and much more, with an accomplished, extraordinary artist like Barbara Hannigan).

    I was fascinated when I heard it in concert (both times), and fascinated when I saw it fully staged.

    For me, any live performance of Written on Skin, concert or staged, is an occasion not to be missed.
    Thanks.

    I've booked to go. I'll be sitting with a friend who absolutely loves it so it should be a great evening.
    "The world calls them its singers and poets and artists and storytellers; but they are just people who have never forgotten the way to fairyland."
    Lucy Maud Montgomery

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  12. #1463
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Another reason to love the absurdity of opera. Verdi's Attila has a chorus of hermits. Think about that for a second.
    Natalie

  13. #1464
    Senior Member Veteran Member Povero Buoso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) View Post
    Annie, I've seen Written on Skin twice in concert and once with the fully staged Katie Mitchell production, not to forget the Aix-en-Provence broadcast and the blu-ray from the ROH (I've watched the latter many times).

    While sure, like with most operas, the fully staged production is even better, I found that both concert performances I attended were almost as effective - this includes the Tanglewood performance with student singers, as well as the Toronto performance with Barbara Hannigan and Christopher Purves.

    It's no secret how much I like this work. I think it is musically so good that it works perfectly well as a concert. Its music is very beautiful, and as usual for all operas, if you get good singers and a good orchestra, the aural environment works better live than it does in recordings and DVDs.

    Do get the DVD, but do attend the concert as well, I'd say.

    This is in my opinion simply the best contemporary opera of the last several decades. It's a true masterpiece in *all* aspects (orchestration, vocal writing, libretto, theatricality) so it works well in any form (even by student singers, and much more, with an accomplished, extraordinary artist like Barbara Hannigan).

    I was fascinated when I heard it in concert (both times), and fascinated when I saw it fully staged.

    For me, any live performance of Written on Skin, concert or staged, is an occasion not to be missed.
    Written on skin was my first contemporary opera and I really enjoyed it. Are there any other not to be missed contemporary operas like Written on Skin?

  14. #1465
    Opera Lively News Coordinator Top Contributor Member MAuer's Avatar
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    One contemporary opera I can recommend is Kevin Puts' Silent Night -- especially since we're in the midst of the World War I centennial. I often find listening to/watching modern operas to be more of an intellectual exercise, but this one actually got to me emotionally.


  15. #1466
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Clayton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Povero Buoso View Post
    Written on skin was my first contemporary opera and I really enjoyed it. Are there any other not to be missed contemporary operas like Written on Skin?
    by Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho,

    Saariaho: L'Amour de loin
    Directed by Peter Sellars
    Dawn Upshaw, Monica Groop & Gerald Finley
    Finnish National Opera, Esa-Pekka Salonen

    Name:  L'Amour de loin - Esa-Pekka Salonen 2000 Finnish National Opera.jpg
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    A long distance love story from centuries ago. I watched it on a streaming service and liked it so much I bought the DVD straight away (and I don't buy that many DVDs).
    Beautiful music with organic sounds, brilliant performances and a great production that will make you want to buy a glass boat.

  16. #1467
    Senior Member Veteran Member Povero Buoso's Avatar
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    To anyone who loves Il Trittico (or just one of the first two parts in particular) I found this reasonably short clip from YouTube to be very enjoyable and informative.
    and if you enjoy Suor Angelica (I hear some people don't like it and while this confuses me I appreciate its mar-mite nature. I love it many others hate or dislike it.) Pappano did one for that opera as well
    It must be noted that Antonio also attempts to sing as well!

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  18. #1468
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    Pappano is a marvelous advocate for opera, with two extended TV specials on the BBC, which are still available if one searches and are both well worth watching. One is a three part history of Italian Opera (with many musical examples)and the other is a multi part series on the classical voice. He also does introductory work on some commercially available DVDs, one being a fine dissertation on Rossini as part of the "wheelchair Barber", which has recently been re released in Blu ray formant, the quality of which still resonates here.

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  20. #1469
    Senior Member Veteran Member Povero Buoso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnGerald View Post
    Pappano is a marvelous advocate for opera, with two extended TV specials on the BBC, which are still available if one searches and are both well worth watching. One is a three part history of Italian Opera (with many musical examples)and the other is a multi part series on the classical voice. He also does introductory work on some commercially available DVDs, one being a fine dissertation on Rossini as part of the "wheelchair Barber", which has recently been re released in Blu ray formant, the quality of which still resonates here.
    He also introduces all the Trittico operas and many others when on BBC Four. I find him an engaging speaker whose excitement and love of the operas is palpable. In addition I have one of his recordings of La Rondine (with Alanga and his ex-wife) and I like it a lot.

  21. #1470
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Clayton's Avatar
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    I'm very happy to see that the Aix-en-Provence Alcina is still available (until 9 January). I'm sure I will be watching it again.

    http://www.theoperaplatform.eu/en/opera/handel-alcina

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