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Subject: Re: Anna Bolena at Carnegie Hall 1966
From: Bob Rideout <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Bob Rideout <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Sun, 18 Jun 2017 13:48:59 -0400
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Well, mot really!

I absolutely do not dismiss Elena Souliotis. Her first studio
recording, Nabucco, is among the most thrilling performances
of any opera I have ever heard, and when I saw her in it at the
Rome Opera in 1969? I was bowled over by its power, and, yes,
accuracy, though by 69 she had more bad days than good.

The Bolena was about half really good, and the finale was more
than half bad. The Norma at Carnegie two years later was mostly
awful until the last act and a visit to her dressing room by Maria
Callas. She sang the last half hour or so magnificently. and she
received a huge ovation, which was an appropriate balance to
the loudest and longest booing I ever heard after "Mira o Norma".

Elena Souliotis was no joke. She sang too much,too soon, and
a lot of it, like long sections of Bolena, were beyond her
technical abilities. But she was, as often as not, at least for a
few years, a thrill and a half.

Bob

On Sunday, June 18, 2017, <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> I must concur with Mr. Rideout,
>
> I saw Souliotis in Dallas. She sang it as if it were verismo, very hooty
> and frequently flat. Zero trills.
> How she ever had a career is beyond me. I also saw her Aida. A complete
> disaster.
>
> Patrick Byrne
>
> In a message dated 6/17/2017 6:03:19 A.M. Central Daylight Time,
> [log in to unmask] <javascript:_e(%7B%7D,'cvml',[log in to unmask]);>
> writes:
>
> I was there and my impression, fifty years later, is not as
> positive as Max's, though I have not heard it since that
> night and that is a long time ago.
>
> I am not a fan of Marilyn Horne in much of anything except
> American songs and a few other lieder and orchestral pieces.
> What struck me initially as a miracle became, in a very short time,
> a sledge hammer of incessant noise and vocal overkill. Enough
> on her. I'm in a very small minority. So be it.
>
> Souliotis had some great moments, but it ended on a really sour
> note. The final scene was a mess, lots of iffy intonation and a vague
> attempt at a trill. You just can't sing this music without a trill.
> But she was exciting and understood how it all should go. A brave,
> but very flawed attempt.
>
> Janet Baker was sublime, and we knew we were in the presence
> of something special. Her sense of repose was remarkable.
>
> It was an interesting evening, at the least.
>
> My thoughs are with Dmitri Hvorostovsky and his struggles.
>
> Bob
>
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