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Subject: Re: The Diva Departs: Renée Fleming’s Farewell to Opera
From: Donald Levine <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Donald Levine <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Thu, 6 Apr 2017 11:01:38 -0700
Content-Type:text/plain
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Renee Fleming, like her or not, I love her, is one of the great singers of
the past 25-40 years.  She would be a star at anytime.  Essentially a full,
moderately sized lyric soprano with a darkish timbre that lets her
occasionally go out of her fach.  For me, she always sounded very much like
the divine Victoria de los Angeles but with a remarkably easy top.  I met
her a number of times years ago and she was then, and I understand from
friends who are close, still is a lovely, grounded person.  Ambitious,
dedicated, tremendous work ethic, but a down to earth person.  I think she
was best sticking to the rep she did and not venturing too far.
Personallly, I enjoyed the Borgia and the Armida.  As for Marguerite, the
role is not a waste and she was wonderful although my favorite was the
irreplaceable Pilar Lorengar.  That decades ago broadcast with Lorengar,
Gedda, Merrill and Siepi was the greatest Faust I ever witnessed and the
Met in its great wisdom, refused to air it on Sirius.  Its up there with
the Sutherland, Lorengar, Gedda, Siepi DG under Bohm.  But, sorry for the
digression.  As for Mme. De Los Angeles, I only heard her in Opera at the
end when she did Carmen but her concerts were amazing.  Among the greatest
recitalists I ever heard - up there with Vishnevskaya, Schwarzkopf, Ludwig,
Crespin.  And whens he ended the concert as she did with every one, with
Adios Granada strumming along on her guitar, it was to die for.  She was
super special.  For me, Fleming is similar, not perfect, but in her way,
super special.  I love Renee.

Donald

On Thu, Apr 6, 2017 at 10:46 AM, kurt youngmann <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Several years ago, along with several friends, I saw a video of a Fleming
> / Hvorostovsky concert from Moscow. Fleming sang something from “Trovatore”
> (don’t recall if it was one of the arias or the Leonora / Luna duet). At
> the conclusion I turned to the others in the room and commented that she
> had sung it very beautifully - but that I hoped she’d never sing it or
> anything else that heavy again. My friends agreed. We felt that it was just
> too much for her essentially lyric voice.
>
> I have seen and greatly enjoyed her as Thais, The Marschallin and
> Desdemona (the best, IMO, since Tebaldi) in addition to several other
> roles. Her Susannah in the Floyd opera was remarkable and her Mozart
> Susanna was among the best. Indeed, she’s eminently well suited for much
> Strauss & Mozart. (She was exceptional in “Capriccio.”) Alas, she never
> sang Arabella here in Chicago - our loss.  Her Marguerite was, for me, a
> waste of her talents and Lucrezia Borgia was quite wrong for her. I’m told
> that Imogene was another mistake, as well as Violetta. Her Manon was
> beautifully sung. I saw her Louise in San Francisco and was greatly bored
> by the opera, although she sang quite well. (Jerry Hadley, unfortunately,
> was already in decline by that time).
>
> For me, Fleming is among the great sopranos of recent years.
>
> Kurt Youngmann
>
> > On Apr 6, 2017, at 12:22 PM, tom ponti <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> >
> > Price tried to encourage Fleming tp let out her sound more as she
> thought Renee's voice was capable of sounding larger and able to take on
> heavier roles.
>
>
> “ . . . I am a Humanist because I think humanity can, with constant moral
> guidance, create a reasonably decent society. I am terrified of restrictive
> religious doctrine, having learned from history that when men who adhere to
> any form of it are in control, common men like me are in peril. I do not
> believe that pure reason can solve the perceptual problems unless it is
> modified by poetry and art and social vision. So I am a Humanist. And if
> you want to charge me with being the most virulent kind—a secular
> humanist—I accept the accusation.” - James A. Michener
>
>
>
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