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Subject: White singers in Porgy & Bess - was Re: Politically Incorrect "Nixon" - HGO response
From: Ulrik <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Ulrik <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Thu, 26 Jan 2017 03:47:06 -0500

text/plain (39 lines)

On Thu, 26 Jan 2017 02:19:54 -0500, Jon Goldberg <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

>Yes - I think that's correct. 
>But - does anyone know of any productions that have used white singers? (Not counting 
>the few actual white roles like Mr. Archdale, of course.)

In 1943 Porgy and Bess was procuded at the Royal Theatre in Copenhagen with well-known 
Danish opera singers (all white) in the parts - and singing in Danish. It used the normal 
opera chorus and the (classically trained) royal ballet corps. It was huge success, being 
performed 22 sold out times. But in 1944, it stopped due to bomb threats from 
sympathisers wiht the Nazi occupation force (who for obvious reasons did not approve of P 
& B). After the end of WWII, already on 26 May 1945, it was performed again to much 
enthusiasm from the audience.

In 1970, it was performed again, also with Danish (white) well-known opera singers in the 

A few years ago a new production reached the Danish Royal Opera, this time with (black) 
guest singers.

kind regards


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