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Lellobeetle
November 5th, 2015, 03:05 PM
Warm greetings everyone. I'm Laura and I live in Pittsburgh, PA. I'm new to opera after being a fan of classic music and choral music all my life. I'm 46 and discovered and have fallen in love with Montserrat Caballé.

:conductor:

Clayton
November 5th, 2015, 03:23 PM
Hello Laura and welcome to Opera Lively!

There are classic music and choral music fans here too so please do post on those threads too...

It's a favourite question here but what (or which) attracted you to opera and which are you listening to most now?

Ann Lander (sospiro)
November 5th, 2015, 05:24 PM
Hi Laura and welcome to the forum.

Great to meet someone else who came late to opera and I look forward to hearing about your discoveries and your opera journey.

Amfortas
November 5th, 2015, 05:53 PM
Welcome, Laura! I too fell in love with Montserrat . . . but it's a long, painful story.

Lellobeetle
November 5th, 2015, 09:06 PM
It's a favourite question here but what (or which) attracted you to opera and which are you listening to most now?

Norma.

Lellobeetle
November 5th, 2015, 09:47 PM
Welcome, Laura! I too fell in love with Montserrat . . . but it's a long, painful story.

Is she not well regarded on the forum or among opera goers?

Amfortas
November 5th, 2015, 11:16 PM
Is she not well regarded on the forum or among opera goers?

Sorry, I was just being silly. Pay no attention to me; it's the first thing everyone on this forum learns.

Hoffmann
November 6th, 2015, 03:04 AM
Hi Laura,

Welcome to OL! Lots of different points of view from lots of different places makes things interesting. It's a very friendly and welcoming group, so hope you enjoy yourself.

Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)
November 6th, 2015, 03:29 AM
Is she not well regarded on the forum or among opera goers?

Much the opposite, she is a very respected, very beloved, first rate singer with one of the best voices ever.

Our good Amfortas has a keen sense of humor, so, don't take what he says literally... Smart and funny, our Amfortas.

Welcome to Opera Lively!

Lellobeetle
November 6th, 2015, 03:59 AM
Thanks to everyone for the warm welcome!

Soave_Fanciulla
November 6th, 2015, 05:37 AM
Welcome Lellobeetle. It's often a singer that piques our interest in opera and you'll find we all have our favourites. I am a sucker for lyric baritones like Peter Mattei and Gerald Finley :love_heart:

Ann Lander (sospiro)
November 6th, 2015, 06:54 AM
Welcome, Laura! I too fell in love with Montserrat . . . but it's a long, painful story.


Is she not well regarded on the forum or among opera goers?

We don't talk about it too much but we think she spurned him. The old story of unrequited love ... :sorrow:

My first opera love was José Carreras (he spurned me too!! :cry2:) and as he recorded so many operas with Caballé I discovered her along the way.

Amfortas
November 6th, 2015, 07:35 AM
We don't talk about it too much but we think she spurned him. The old story of unrequited love ... :sorrow:

More like a Fatal Attraction kind of thing--she still won't stop writing me letters. The authorities have been informed.

JohnGerald
November 6th, 2015, 03:11 PM
Welcome to our world. It's a fun place to spend time.

I almost forgot about the ONE unwritten rule: never post anything negative about Anna Netrebko (if such is even possible!). the Boardmeister (Almaviva) gets very frosty when anything negative about Anna hits the screen ... :livid:

Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)
November 7th, 2015, 12:44 AM
Welcome to our world. It's a fun place to spend time.

I almost forgot about the ONE unwritten rule: never post anything negative about Anna Netrebko (if such is even possible!). the Boardmeister (Almaviva) gets very frosty when anything negative about Anna hits the screen ... :livid:
I don't get very frosty. That's not true at all! I merely fire a small nuclear device at the offender's home. I figure it's a measured response to such a grave offense!

Lellobeetle
November 7th, 2015, 10:06 AM
Regarding Anna Netrebko, I think she's got a nice voice, but needs more studying and development and she could be outstanding. I like her singing Barcarolle and the Flower Duet with Elina Garanca.

Barcarolle

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hdc2zNgJIpY&feature=youtu.be

Flower Duet

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vf42IP__ipw

Hoffmann
November 7th, 2015, 01:25 PM
:ohmy:

Lellobeetle
November 7th, 2015, 04:15 PM
:ohmy:

Have I offended? :concern:

JohnGerald
November 7th, 2015, 04:29 PM
Have I offended? :concern:

Nah!

Although Alamviva will probably have a contrary opinion. By and large, though, differences of opinion are well tolerated here and are often the start of interesting, yet civilized discourse.

Except for Alma, whom some think is getting a bit cranky in his dotage .... :laugh4:

Ann Lander (sospiro)
November 7th, 2015, 05:41 PM
Regarding Anna Netrebko, I think she's got a nice voice, but needs more studying and development and she could be outstanding. I like her singing Barcarolle and the Flower Duet with Elina Garanca.


:ohmy:


Have I offended? :concern:

Hoffmann's shock is only because he knows how Almaviva will react :laugh4:

All opinions are valid and welcome on this site. I love hearing other people's opinions and it would be so boring if everyone liked the same singer.

My friend and I talk for hours about why different people like different voices. Both of us are fanatical about opera but she prefers lyric/dramatic sopranos and isn't ever interested who the tenor is. I prefer basses and baritones and I'm not interested in who the tenor is either (as long as he can sing the right notes and in the right order, Mr. Preview) and I'd be happy if there were no women in any opera, ever!


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-zHBN45fbo8

JohnGerald
November 7th, 2015, 06:26 PM
NOT INTERESTED IN WHO THE TENOR IS??????????????????????:croc:

I wasn't aware that there were other singers except for duets with the tenor!!

Ann Lander (sospiro)
November 7th, 2015, 06:39 PM
NOT INTERESTED IN WHO THE TENOR IS??????????????????????:croc:

I wasn't aware that there were other singers except for duets with the tenor!!

:laugh4:

That's most people's reaction. I just don't like soppy love stories and as these usually involve the tenor and the soprano, my favourite operas tend to be different from other people's.

Lellobeetle
November 7th, 2015, 06:42 PM
Break it down for the new girl, please. Are these two examples too pedestrian? After all, I'm an Opera peasant.

ETA: The thing I don't care for about modern opera singers is what i perceive as being highly packaged and marketed. One thing I love about Caballé is she was/is herself without any hooks to draw in people. Only her talent is depended on.

Am I reading that correctly? Make sense?

Ann Lander (sospiro)
November 7th, 2015, 07:08 PM
Break it down for the new girl, please. Are these two examples too pedestrian? After all, I'm an Opera peasant.

ETA: The thing I don't care for about modern opera singers is what i perceive as being highly packaged and marketed. One thing I love about Caballé is she was/is herself without any hooks to draw in people. Only her talent is depended on.

Am I reading that correctly? Make sense?

Makes perfect sense to me!

These days, the singer's looks for the DVD/cinema streaming, is often more important than the voice.

Lellobeetle
November 7th, 2015, 11:05 PM
Frankly, Netrebko is not really on my radar.

Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)
November 9th, 2015, 04:40 AM
Break it down for the new girl, please. Are these two examples too pedestrian? After all, I'm an Opera peasant.

ETA: The thing I don't care for about modern opera singers is what i perceive as being highly packaged and marketed. One thing I love about Caballé is she was/is herself without any hooks to draw in people. Only her talent is depended on.

Am I reading that correctly? Make sense?

No, really, running joke apart (I'd be supposed to fire a small nuclear device at your house), your examples are nice, but Anna *has* developed beyond that. If you have an opportunity, please listen to/see her Lady Macbeth at the Met. Listen to her Verdi album. Go back a little and see her incredible Lucia di Lamermoor mad scene where she matches the glass harmonica.

Anna has developed into simply... the best soprano of her generation, in my humble opinion, especially now that she's been venturing into the dramatic repertory, and doing extremely well in this fach. Not to forget, she is an extremely gifted actress, and a stage animal. She commands the stage. Her stage presence is simply phenomenal.

Her Lady Macbeth is of historical proportion. It's of Maria Callas caliber.

Sure, maybe I'm biased, but I really admire this woman, and I consider myself utterly privileged for having met her four times in person, and for having interviewed her at length, although it's arguably my weakest interview because I was too star struck and couldn't put two questions together, being entirely fascinated by her charm, her lively personality, and compelling body language.

Is Anna heavily marketed? Oh well, she is very pretty, very attractive, so yes, opera companies and recording companies try to make money based on her artistry and looks, and do market her heavily. She happens to sell opera tickets, DVDs, and CDs. What's wrong with that? The art form struggles enough, and when we have an artist like Anna who can attract the crowds, yeah, we do need to get those tickets sold.

But Anna is a simple, down-to-Earth, funny, approachable, genuine person. She is no diva. She is very much admired by her colleagues for being friendly, humble, and hard-working. She is a very *good* person who believes in her art and is very charitable (involved in significant efforts to better the lives of disadvantaged children).

Anna is a very fabulous human being and an outstanding artist.

Some people like to criticize her based on the old assumption that she is on top of the opera world just because she is pretty.

Oh well, that's really, really old news. By now, Anna has abundantly shown that she is on top because she is an extraordinary singer and actress, with an uncannily beautiful timbre of voice, ever-improving technique, and a spectacular ability to portray a character on stage.

Of course, here on Opera Lively like sospiro said, there are no wrong opinions. Every opinion is valid. Every preference is cool.

Just, I got a feeling from your posts that you haven't seen Anna live on stage yet. Please, pardon me if my assumption is wrong, but if I got this part right and if it is the case, please, just reserve judgment. Go see her. Go listen to her gorgeous voice directly, no mediation through recordings or broadcasts. Just that aural space, that direct sound wave, from her lungs and throat to your ears. Then, see her passion on stage; see her get into her character like a natural, so that you forget that you are in an opera house, and you just relate directly to that character and to that music, transported to that universe by her artistry.

We are all privileged, as opera lovers, to be able to sit there and watch/listen to an artist like Anna. She is one of those rare ones who grace our art form once every 30 years or so.

In a century and so, if our species is still thriving on this Earth, people will look back at the opera scene in the 21st century and will talk about Anna Netrebko. All the stuff about marketing and looks and all will be unimportant by then. What will prevail, is her marvelous voice.

Yeah, Anna is tops. Give her a chance!

Soave_Fanciulla
November 9th, 2015, 07:58 AM
Only problem about Anna is that she's a soprano (I'm not as bad as Annie because I DO like mezzos)

Clayton
November 9th, 2015, 10:32 AM
Whilst I would not describe myself as an Anna fan, I am a massive fan of her performance of Stabat Mater and Iolanta; my two recommended Netrebko recordings

8504


Pergolesi:
Nel chiuso centro - chamber cantata
Anna Netrebko (soprano)
La conversion e morte di San Guglielmo duca d'Aquitania: Sinfonia to the sacred drama
Questo č il piano
Marianna Pizzolato (contralto)
Stabat Mater
Anna Netrebko (soprano) & Marianna Pizzolato (contralto)
Orchestra dell’ Accademia di Santa Cecilia, Antonio Pappano

8505

Tchaikovsky: Iolanta
Anna Netrebko (Iolanta), Sergey Skorokhodov (Vaudémont), Alexey Markov (Robert), Monika Bohinec (Martha), Junho You (Almerik), Lucas Meachem (Ibn-Hakia), Vitalij Kowaljow (King René), Luka Debevec Mayer (Bertrand), Nuška Rojko (Laura), Theresa Plut (Brigitte)
Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra, Emmanuel Villaume

Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)
November 9th, 2015, 12:07 PM
OK, Clayton, given your opening phrase, I'm sending to your house just half of a small nuclear device. :croc:

JohnGerald
November 9th, 2015, 02:48 PM
One of the things I enjoy about opera is the opportunity to experience different singers doing the same role. I review enough opera recordings on Amazon.com to be very confident in stating that some folks can be rabid in their enthusiasm for "this" singer over "that" one. I like 'em all, if they are good singers (and better if they can act, too!) "She Who Must Be Obeyed" (a 19th century literary allusion) cannot understand why multiple recordings of Traviata, Lucia, etc. populate the video shelves, but such is life!

Anna Netrebko is, IMHO, a great artist. I first experienced her work on a DGG DVD of the Baden Baden Gala (now, thankfully, available on Blu ray. Her skills were superb then, and have only improved with time. The new DGG release of Macbeth may well be the best operatic experience of my life, which as far as opera goes, extends back to the 1960s when I was able to see (and meet) some of the great singers from the Met.

I mention all of this for Lellobeetle, who considers herself less well versed in opera than some others. What a neat stage in operatic fandom! What marvelous experiences await.

My only suggestion is to maintain an open mind. As Dr. McCoy once said to Capt. Kirk, "Jim, it's all good!"

Lellobeetle
November 15th, 2015, 03:11 AM
But Anna is a simple, down-to-Earth, funny, approachable, genuine person. She is no diva. She is very much admired by her colleagues for being friendly, humble, and hard-working. She is a very *good* person who believes in her art and is very charitable (involved in significant efforts to better the lives of disadvantaged children).

Yeah, Anna is tops. Give her a chance!

That's very encouraging, and I'll definitely look up those pieces you suggest. My opinion has been based on this kind of thing where she needs to put some clothes on, imho.


https://youtu.be/g0Kcg7WEJME

Festat
November 15th, 2015, 07:01 AM
My opinion has been based on this kind of thing where she needs to put some clothes on, imho.
You ought to see this.

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/6192Rc5rrlL._SY500_.jpg

Soave_Fanciulla
November 15th, 2015, 07:27 AM
You ought to see this.

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/6192Rc5rrlL._SY500_.jpg

:laugh4:

Povero Buoso
November 17th, 2015, 02:06 AM
Depending on how much you've heard if I might make a case for my favourite Opera(s). Puccini's Il Trittico is made up of three short exemplary operas he did near the end of his career before his sadly unfinished Turandot. Sadly they are under-performed in comparison to some of his other operas that are perhaps less deserving of the honour. However, there really is something in Il Trittico for everyone. As a taster Caballe has covered the most famous aria from Gianni Schicchi you might even know it :listening_headphone

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dI17VdRfCek