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Subject: Re: Stoyanova's roles
From: Geoffrey Riggs <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Geoffrey Riggs <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Tue, 30 Dec 2003 18:39:59 -0500

text/plain (54 lines)

[from Geof. Riggs; not Eliz. H., my better half]

From:         Grant Youngblood <[log in to unmask]>

"But she doesn't strike
me as a Trovatore Leonora.  I mean, how many sopranos around today can
cope with the demands of Act IV?  I fear Ms. Stoyanova would run out of
in the midst of that killer first scene, even with the mercy cuts that are
standard in Trovatore performances today."

Candidly, I would not view the Fourth Act with such alarm.  While
Stoyanova's voice is not a full dramatic in the mid-range, she showed a
surprisingly easy access to her lowest notes the night of the Bolena --
including a solid low B-flat -- showing that her instrument is considerably
more than a delicate lyric, thank goodness.

Beyond that, Bolena is, in fact, more of a taxing workout than the
Trovatore Leonora, demanding as that is, and Stoyanova showed herself
highly resourceful at the Bolena in reaching the end of a long evening with
her voice still fresh from top to bottom.  With its extraordinary range
from easy acuti to a number of assertive low Bs and low B-flats, Bolena's
demands do not let up, yet Stoyanova showed herself remarkably adroit in
handling its many hurdles with aplomb and assured musical control.

Here, IMO, is a brilliant technician and musician who knows precisely what
she's doing at every step, and I for one am grateful.

Granted, the sheer opulence of a Sondra Radvanovsky is not hers -- and I
regard Radvanovsky as the truest inheritor of the Milanov/Price mantle in
the Trovatore Leonora today.  But I feel that Stoyanova will not be put at
undue risk in assaying this role and will probably do herself proud in the

Naturally, much depends on the size of the halls in which she takes on such
parts, and the frequency with which she does them.  But after all, Carnegie
Hall (where I saw her fine Bolena) is hardly a small space, albeit not
comparable to a place like the Met.  Thus, Stoyanova did have to "put out"
that night, so to speak.  Yet, with all the excitement she generated when
at full throttle, one never felt she was pushing the envelope at any time --
 again, IMO, granted.

Her Trovatore will not, I believe, take her even as close to the brink as
Bolena did -- where she triumphed.

My two cents,

Geoffrey Riggs

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