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Subject: Piotr Beczala and Fritz Wunderlich
From: Kirsten Lee <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Kirsten Lee <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Mon, 1 Dec 2008 22:50:16 -0800

text/plain (48 lines)

Almost 4 years ago I posted the following comment on Opera-l after a
performance of Eugene Onegin in San Francisco.

"Lensky was marvelously sung by Piotr Beczala sounding at times like Fritz
Wunderlich and he received the biggest applaud."

Yesterday, a beautiful sunny Sunday afternoon in San Francisco I walked by
the court yard between the War Memorial Opera House and the Herbst Theatre
where small dog group meet for play, my luck would have it that I happened
to walk by the men's dressing room and heard Beczala vocalizing for the
afternoon's Rodolfo. I lingered on for a while enjoying this surprise treat,
then went upstairs to the shop and bought Beczala's CD Salut!.

Beczala wrote an introduction "Salut! - mein erstes Album" and mentions in
it that track 6 "Ne parle pas, Rose" from Maillart's Les dragons de Villars
is dedicated to Fritz Wunderlich. This was the one of the first arias he
heard Wunderlich sing and almost all arias Wunderlich sang have been
recorded by other tenors but not this one - so he wanted to pay tribute to
"incomparable" Fritz Wunderlich with this one.

Beczala also mentions that Fritz Wunderlich's widow Eva and her family have
been following his career closely for several years. Reincarnation maybe?
One great artist perished in a tragic accident in 1966 and another was born
in the same year whose voice brings back all the joys and thrill of the
former. I am a big fan of both and (as my friend says) if I squint hard they
even look alike with similar hairlines. I am switching between Beczala's "Ne
parle pas, Rose, je t'en supplie" and Wunderlich's German version of "O
schweige still, o lasse dich erbitten" and I am getting goosebumps....

Kirsten Lee

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