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Subject: Re: Has "Samson et Dalila" gone the way of "Mignon"
From: Mike Leone <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Mike Leone <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Wed, 12 Oct 2016 17:13:19 +0000
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   Hello all--
I wouldn't call Samson et Dalila one of my favorite operas, and I like it much better than I used to; I think it can work quite well with the right cast and conductor.  The 1946 recording with Hélène Bouvier and José Luccioni under Louis Fourestier, which I first heard in its Naxos transfer, is the version that started changing my mind about the opera.
The DVD of the 1997 Lyon Orphée aux enfers has some simulated copulation (and other things) between Natalie Dessay and Laurent Naouri during the fly duet that I think works quite well.  Then again, they are husband and wife in real life so they presumably had had some practice before doing it on stage; they are both magnificent in that performance overall and steal all of the scenes that either or both of them are in.  That is a delightful performance of a work that, unlike Samson et Dalila, I never needed to be sold on.
Mike Leone
[log in to unmask] il Leone!

      From: Max D. Winter <[log in to unmask]>
 To: [log in to unmask] 
 Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2016 9:50 AM
 Subject: Re: Has "Samson et Dalila" gone the way of "Mignon"
  
I find S&D a snooze, apart from some of Act II, but do I love the "Bacchanale" - the ultimate 
in operatic hoochie-koochie music.  Alas, the dancing/staging of most Bacchanalia is an 
embarrassment.  I saw a production some years ago in which the director tried to sex up the 
dancing with some graphic gyrations.  But simulated copulation usually comes across as 
comical and rarely works on stage.  (I assume doesn't work so well in private, either.)

MDW

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