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Subject: Re: Late Leontyne Price
From: "Ms. Voigt's Broadcast Isolde" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Ms. Voigt's Broadcast Isolde
Date:Mon, 13 Mar 2017 15:36:27 -0400
Content-Type:text/plain
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Mr. Rahbeck,
Surely no one denies that Price was a great and beloved singer.  But 'nit
picking' is part of what Opera-L is about, I would have thought -- a place
where serious lovers of the genre and the human voice and its production can
exchange impressions about details.

And race in the way you are talking about it in your post has nothing to do
with the artistic question I posed, which was addressed in informative ways
by others who wrote.

David Kubiak

>> 
>> I think nit picking and second guessing the motives behind every  scoop a 
>> great singer does in their decline does a diservice unless you  also
bring up 
>> what she did well and that a total picture ensues. I guess  I have gotten 
>> tired of people focusing on only the negative, and I  see  the enevitable 
>> "race " issue emerging. She was a great singer who had  to piss in a
dixie cup 
>> because she wasn't allowed to use whites only bathrooms,  and had to say in 
>> raunchy hotels over state lines where people of color weren't  allowed to 
>> stay at certain hotels in certain states, when she performed so  if she
was a 
>> little sensitive, doesn't that deserve  measure of mercy as  well, and while 
>> it is true that some singers of color over used the race card, I  think we 
>> have to keep some perspective. Recent political events have indicated  that 
>> racism still abounds.
>> John Rahbeck
>> 
>> 
>> In a message dated 3/13/2017 10:52:00 A.M. Pacific Daylight Time,  
>> [log in to unmask] writes:
>> 
>> I was  listening yesterday to a Sirius Met. Verdi 'Requiem' from 1982 with
>> Price  as the soprano, and was trying to analyze what we think of as her  
>> late
>> style.  The whoop/swoop is the thing most cited, but there was  also a
>> virtual shriek when releasing notes, weirdly exaggerated emphases,  and a
>> raucous almost parlando use of chest voice.  What struck me is  that when
>> important singers who are aging either do or don't do things they  used to,
>> it is because of some kind of technical deterioration.  But I  had the sense
>> that all these things were conscious stylistic choices for  her and by no
>> means necessary.  In the really tough places like that  endless floated note
>> in the 'Sed signifer sanctus' she was impeccable, and  she produced a
>> magnificent C in the 'Libera me', only to compromise it by a  wild swoop
>> downward that would have embarrassed even Zinka. 
>> 
>> I have  read that during the civil rights movement she came to feel her
>> singing was  too European and began doing things that she thought more
>> authentically  African-American, but this seems far-fetched to me.  Any  
>> thoughts?
>> 
>> David  Kubiak
>> 
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