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Subject: Re: Has "Samson et Dalila" gone the way of "Mignon"
From: Les Mitnick <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Les Mitnick <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Wed, 12 Oct 2016 16:57:45 +0000
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I may be wrong (as I frequently am), but I can't imagine that Von Stade or Hadley had the ideal weight of voice for Samson or Dalila. I can certainly see Ramey in his baritone role, however. I think you need a very strong and dramatic tenor (which Jerry Hadley was not) as well as a weighty contralto or very heavy low mezzo). I think that Hadley and Von Stade would have been "too lyrical" for such heavy roles. Maybe I'm wrong. 
Verrett was ideal, as was Domingo and Vickers. Grace Bumbry also did Dalila beautifully. Saw her and Vickers do it here in Chicago. It was dynamite. 


----- Original Message -----

From: "tom ponti" <[log in to unmask]> 
To: "OPERA-L" <[log in to unmask]> 
Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2016 11:26:30 AM 
Subject: Re: Has "Samson et Dalila" gone the way of "Mignon" 

I love S&D too. Visually, I prefer the SF DVD with Verrett and Domingo because Placido is much more appealing physically than Vickers. Vocally, both men are outstanding. Also, the fact that Domingo looks younger than Verrett, makes their relationship more plausible. I also think that Dalila's arias and duets are among the greatest for the mezzo soprano voice in all of opera. Years ago on TV there was a Von Stade special where she, Ramey and Hadley performed excerpts of Mignon, which were very enjoyable. 


________________________________ 
From: Discussion of opera and related issues <[log in to unmask]> on behalf of Bob Rideout <[log in to unmask]> 
Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2016 12:01 PM 
To: [log in to unmask] 
Subject: Re: [OPERA-L] Has "Samson et Dalila" gone the way of "Mignon" 

I guess I'm in a minority who really like the opera. 

The Verrett/Vickers video is wonderful and is a very 
convincing testimonial to the effectiveness of the opera, 
both musically and dramatically. 

Rita Gorr was magnificent at the Met in the early sixties 
and her great duet with Gabriel Bacquier the evening of 
the new production is among my greatest operatic 
memories. Vickers and McCracken were superb in the early 
years of that production, as was Mignon Dunn, a singer of 
great ability, often overlooked and underappreciated. Her 
very top range was not a thing if beauty or ease, but Dalila 
was mearly a perfect fit. 

If the opera has patches of "filler", it also has long stretches 
of greatness, including three of the most beautiful arias ever 
written for the lower female voice, and lots of wonderful 
orchestral effects. 

The Gorr/Vickers/Blanc/Pretre EMI recording has given me 
a lotta pleasure over a lotta years! 

Bob 

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