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Subject: Re: Pol Plancon sings Cantique de Noel
From: Bob Rideout <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Bob Rideout <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Thu, 15 Dec 2016 07:52:11 -0500
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James

I think this is a classic case of the conflict between voice
and vocalism. Plancon is widely regarded as a superb 
technician who was never defeated by notes on a page, 
nut many people have trouble with the "sound", myself
included. He never really sounds like a true bass, and he 
often comes off as affected, in the worst sense.

My three favorites are Thill, whose vocalism is a
barrage of tonal and textual thrills, Leontyne, whose
repose is beyond jaw dropping, and Bjorling, whose
performance is a little like "the three bears" - one was
too hot, one too cold, and one was just right. Having
said that, it is the Thill that most knocks my socks off.

On a related note, listen to "We Three Kings" on the
Price/Von Karajan Christmas Album. The final phrase
is just about the most hauntingly beautiful vocal effect
I've ever heard. The whole album is extraordinary!

Bob

On Wed, 14 Dec 2016 22:02:53 -0800, James Camner <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

>Well taste is taste and there's no arguing about it. We all like what we
>like and no defense is necessary.
>
>I was disappointed with Florez's Cantique de Noel. I played it for my wife
>and we both, being Florez fans, were surprised at how unsteady it is, there
>is a beat in his voice, but also he lacks the rock solid control the aria
>demands. If not Plancon, then listen to Caruso
>
>https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4XPZRI4L5H8
>
>Or Thill:
>
>https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CS8G_LyYlso
>
>I don't think Florez is in the league of either.  Historically Plancon was
>a giant, Caruso supposedly complained that he was 'too perfect" but I once
>speculated on the list that if he were on the stage today, he wouldn't
>appeal to a modern audience. He's far too cultivated, elegant, light
>voiced, he is from a period before Verismo (which is ingrained in all
>singing today, even when those singers are doing stuff like Bellini or even
>Handel) and I'm positive that Plancon along with his colleagues including
>both De Reszkes, Battistini, Melba, Patti, Calve, etc etc would flop today
>if they were magically transported in their prime to stand and sing at the
>Met today. I daresay that someone like Patricia Racette would probably be
>preferred to Emma Eames.
>
>But it's all guessing. Kind of like wondering if Babe Ruth could get a hit
>today off of Clayton Kershaw. Fun stuff.
>
>Happy Holidays to all!
>
>James Camner
>
>On Wed, Dec 14, 2016 at 6:04 PM, tom ponti <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>
>> Sorry, but to my ears this performance is dreadful, in every way. Try
>> Elina Granca or Juan Diego Florez on You Tube.  There is also a Christmas
>> in Vienna, 2008, concert where they sing it together. This concert has two
>> other wonderful singers, a boy's choir and adult choir. My favorite O Holy
>> Night has always been that of Leontyne Price on her first Christmas Album,
>> with Von K.
>>
>>
>> ------------------------------
>> *From:* Discussion of opera and related issues <[log in to unmask]>
>> on behalf of James Camner <[log in to unmask]>
>> *Sent:* Tuesday, December 13, 2016 4:06 AM
>> *To:* [log in to unmask]
>> *Subject:* [OPERA-L] Pol Plancon sings Cantique de Noel
>>
>> Many good recordings to choose of Cantique de Noel including superb
>> readings by Caruso, Bjoerling, Thill, Fischer-Dieskau and Pavarotti, but
>> this is the one I hear in my head as the definitive one:
>>
>> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y_ULgI3Q2w0
>> <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y_ULgI3Q2w0>
>> Pol Plançon, Cantique de Noël (Adolphe Adam) (Victor, 1903)
>> <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y_ULgI3Q2w0>
>> www.youtube.com
>> Happy holidays & best wishes for the New Year! The great French Basse
>> Chantante and one of the giants of the "Golden Age of Opera", Pol Plançon
>> (1851-1914) in ...
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> Enjoy!
>>
>> James Camner
>>
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