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Subject: The Most Important Soprano Since Callas and Sutherland?
From: "G. Paul Padillo" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:G. Paul Padillo
Date:Sun, 31 Jul 2016 21:13:33 -0400
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Mr. Camner wrote (in part):

"A perusal of Opera-L comments on Anna Netrebko reveal wildly inaccurate and hugely 
negative assessments of the singer who has firmly established herself as the most 
important and dominant opera soprano since the days of Callas and Sutherland."

While I may agree Netrebko can be looked upon as today's undisputed queen of opera, 
pronouncing her the most important and dominant soprano since Callas is ludicrous.  
Netrebko will probably never have the following that, say, Leontyne Price - who at age 57 
was still selling out the cavernous Met in a way even not even Nebs can today.  Other 
names who spring to mind are Beverly Sills or Teresa Stratas, both of whom made 
international headlines as well as purely musical ones, and who (like them or not) were as 
known for their tireless charitable work (Sills for the March of Dimes, Stratas who moved to 
Calcutta to work for several years with Mother Theresa).  

I wouldn't even consider Netrebko the most important Russian soprano since the era of 
Callas, since the name Galina Vishnevskaya comes immediately to the forefront in that 
regard, and does so light years beyond what Ms. Netrebko has shown herself capable of 
artistically.  

Compare the two singers in their shared repertoires, most notably Tatyana in Onegin or 
Natasha in War and Peace, and Vishnevskaya comes out ahead in every regard.  Add to this 
roles we will probably not hear from Netrebko, such as Aida, Tosca, Butterfly, Liu, Katerina 
Ismailova, as well as works outside the operatic spectrum, including Britten's War Requiem, 
the Verdi Requiem, not to mention composers like Britten and Shostakovich who composed 
works specifically with her in mind.  Vishnevskaya made international news in a way 
Netrebko will never do, (and should be grateful for it) and has been the subject of 
documentaries, starred in at least two films, including Alexander Sokurov's "Alexandra," 
written for her and chosen by many papers (including the NY Times) as one of the 10 best 
films of 2009.  

I don't begrudge Ms. Netrebko an ounce of her fame, she's fun, her audiences love her and 
I've personally enjoyed some of her performances enormously, but I simply don't think 
she'll go down in history with names like Callas, Sills, Vishnevskaya, Nilsson, Price.  At least 
not based on her body of work thus far.

p.
http://sharkonarts.blogspot.com/

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