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Subject: Re: franco corelli, zucker's recent book, the aftermath
From: Rudi Van den Bulck <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Rudi Van den Bulck <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Wed, 7 Jan 2015 22:11:24 +0100
Content-Type:text/plain
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For the record : Mr Neckers did NOT bring this "discussion" to the opera-L
forum. Mr Zucker did. Mr Zucker could have easily  forwarded his objections
with the review to operanostalgia itself. As readers from our webzine may
know we always give a 'right to answer'. Mr Zucker's lies of Jan Neckers
being a personal enemy is ridiculous. Mr Neckers has never ever contacted Mr
Zucker in anyway possible.

Yet as Mr Zucker also dragged my name into the argument, hereby my thoughts
on the matter.
At present I'm finishing reading my copy of the book  and I must conclude Mr
Neckers is too mild in his overall judgement.
1. Mr Zucker calls my reviewer a 'cheat'. What do you call someone who
makes money by selling pirates, making illegal copies without paying any 
royalties
to the artists, the orchestra or the original source involved?
2. Speaking of "libel'  Mr. Zucker what about the Millo hoax Mr Cardinalli
rightly referred to a few postings ago? That really hit the mail, didn't it?
3. Mr Neckers sloppy about facts? Hmm let's see :

In your 'self-published' book you write that La Scala scheduled Fedora and
Poliuto for Del Monaco (never ever heard of that but maybe you have access
to a source I have not) ) but "in the end Corelli sang the
performances because, of the two, the management found him(=MDM) impossible 
to
deal with". You must be joking?!? Ghiringelli got along pretty well with the
Del Monacos and thus gave him Otello, Carmen, Francesca da Rimini, Samson,
Troyens and Chenier around and after that time? Why didn't he use Corelli
then if he was so much more easy to deal with? There was even serious talk 
(and
it was announced) of La Juive with Del Monaco and Callas but this was
replaced by Huguenots without Mario and Maria.
Moreover the Scala Carmen (March 1963) you refer to (where Del Monaco indeed
was in bad health and voice) did not end his Scala career as Giringhelli
scheduled Rienzi (signed contract November 1963) with Del Monaco. Del Monaco
was prevented from singing in Rienzi because of his car accident and a
serious case of hepatitis. Yes, Corelli sang Cav and Turandot a year or so
later but these performances also concluded his Scala career and he became
indeed the pre-eminent tenor of the Met though Bing clearly wanted Del
Monaco back as you well know.

"Mr Neckers Sloppy"?  Calling Gigli's "Hitler's tenor" is not only sloppy
but simply not true.  If you would have studied more carefully some of the
subjects you discuss you would have known "his tenor" was Leo Slezak.
"Mr Neckers sloppy?" on page 218 of your book you state Claudio Villa
recorded the Cherry duet with Olivero. He did nothing of that kind. He sang
part of the duet with Magda for an Italian TV quizz programme. That's again
being very sloppy with facts from your side. And for the record it was Mr.
Neckers himself who unearthed this clip for his TV programme on Italian
tenors in 1987.

Purely for sensation you mention (on page 30) a court order preventing Del
Monaco from singing in Italy for 18 months.  I would love to see that court
order as this 18 months gap never occurred as you yourself could have easily
checked in the MDM chronology. Moreover you deliberately forget to add that
1. if MDM had ever been convicted a visa for further US appearances would
have been denied to him 2. the accusations towards MDM came from an
anonymous letter. 3. According to a letter I have by Mrs Del Monaco Mario
was acquitted of all accusations and she confirms the libel was based on an
anonymous letter.

I rest my case

RvdB 

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