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Subject: soprano definitivo imperatrice assoluta del mondo
From: "Takis Pavl." <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Takis Pavl.
Date:Sun, 23 Oct 2011 22:29:19 -0700
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Bob, I mentioned Callas' Aida to prove that evaluating a soprano's success in a role in order to title her assoluta (yawn) will get you into endless discussions because this criterion is totally subjective. Why shouldn't your assoluta also sing Strauss, Lieder, Gemma di Vergy or all the other roles Caballe performed "with great success"? Lets title such a soprano "soprano imperatrice assoluta". And a soprano who's sang music from nearly 6 centruries in different languages, styles, using various ornaments, accents etc like Emma Kirkby "soprano definitivo imperatrice assoluta del mondo". What a load of diva-worshipping BS. All great titles for a party but hardly necessary in order to understand a singer's abilities. Every singer decides to perform a set of roles, they normally will differ from Callas, Caballe or any other singer. Why should they sing the same roles, do they need to prove they can sing Callas', Tebaldi's or Domingo's
 roles? I certainly don't need them to, as long as they sing what they like, well. 
Takis
 
 
 

________________________________
From: Bob Rideout <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: Monday, 24 October 2011, 1:04
Subject: Callas - Aida and

Hello everybody

In response to Takis' comments about Callas' "Aida", I submit -

She sang the role over thirty times in a six year period.  She sang
Lady Macbeth in one revival in 1952, one revival of "Nabucco" in
1949 and, and, and.  Are you prepared to tell us that she gave up
those "one shots" and about a dozen others because she was not
successful in them?  Among her triumphs in the role, and not just
because of the top Eb, was at Mexico City in 1950.  She repeated
that success in 1951.  Mexico City was not accustomed to back
to back seasons in the same role, so, she must have been doing
something right.  Do I think it one of her greatest roles, no!  But it
was far from a failure during the years in which she was singing it.
In fact, it was a triumph in more than one theater!

The EMI recording has its great moments, but not enough, I agree.
So, if one wants to denigrate her accomplishment in some of her
roles, there is evidence to support that "position".  But, if one wants
to present an level view, there is more than enough to balance
those scales.  It all depends on your agenda!

For what it's worth, I know no one who has been less than awed
by both the totality of her Aida in Mexico, AND that Eb!

Bob

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