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Subject: Re: Tosca in general
From: Ombrarecds <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Ombrarecds <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Sun, 18 Jun 2017 19:20:11 -0500
Content-Type:text/plain
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text/plain (208 lines)


Joan bears a disturbing resemblance to Caitlyn Jenner. The costume is atrocious.
I prefer Madame Vera Galupe Borsch's Floria.

Patrick Byrne

Sent from my iPhone

On Jun 18, 2017, at 6:58 PM, francis augustus <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> who knew?
> 
> https://youtu.be/ouj2Vw8RQJ4 <https://youtu.be/ouj2Vw8RQJ4>
> 
> JA
> 
> 
> 
>> On 19 Jun 2017, at 9:12 AM, Donald Levine <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> 
>> I think I will weigh in on this and ramble a bit.  First off, Ponselle
>> might have been tempted to do Tosca but in her years at the Met it was the
>> almost sole property of Maria Jeritza who was one of Puccini's favorites.
>> Jeritza was a massive star - up there with Ponselle and Rethberg.  By the
>> time Jeritza left the Met Ponselle might have had second thoughts about
>> Tosca.  Jeritza had been the Met's Minnie after Destinn and its first
>> Turandot.  Milanov's Met Tosca's came twenty-five years into the roll for
>> her - it was one of her first assignments in Yugoslavia and she had a
>> notable success with it in the early forties in Buenos Aires.  In the 40's
>> at the Met it was the property of Grace Moore and Milanov didn't have the
>> clout to demand it if she wanted it - remember, she and Johnson had a
>> mutual dislike for each other.  As for Sondra Radvanovsky, if I am not
>> mistaken, Tosca was in her rep before Norma and there is no reason a great
>> Norma can't be a great Tosca.  If you can sing the role, you can sing the
>> role.  Period.  Certain things you don't sing together in the same season,
>> but singing is singing and technique is technique.  I'd love to hear Sondra
>> as Minnie and even Turandot.  She has the top, the volume, the cut and
>> edge, and the technique to pretty much do whatever she wants.
>> 
>> The French language excerpts with Crespin date to 1961, a year when the
>> voice had no problems.  Paul Finel is the Cavaradossi and I believe Rene
>> Bianco is the Scarpia.  Pretre conducts.  It presents a good part of her
>> Tosca and is fabulous.  If you can find it, there is a French language
>> Otello with Crespin as Desdemona and the great Jose Luccioni as Otello.  I
>> believe it from 1955 and it too is fabulous.  For the first 15 years of her
>> career, she really was a French Tebaldi (of course, she was half Italian).
>> Another of my favorite Tosca's was Leonie Rysanek.  It's probably a good
>> sample of what Jeritza's Tosca was like.  It was all over the place,
>> hystrionically and vocally but wow, those top notes were - hit you in the
>> eyes like the proverbial great pizza pie....for me it was amore....
>> 
>> I heard Tebaldi's Tosca late in her career and she was fabulous even if the
>> top was problematic.  Albanese did have secure and fairly big top notes,
>> but the rest of the voice was small, the chest register virtually
>> non-existent and for me, this negates any positive qualities she had as
>> Tosca.  Yes, I've heard the broadcast and yes, she nails much of the role,
>> but it really wasn't for her voice.  Tosca needs three things, voice, more
>> voice and conviction.  Albanese succeeded on conviction, she really didn't
>> have the voice for the role.  Kirsten was a whole other thing.  Yes, she
>> was a lyric soprano but she had a spinto cut to the voice, brilliant,
>> perfectly placed and produced high notes and she knew how to use her voice
>> with the proper accents on the consonants.  Its an old Italian vocal trick
>> probably learned from her training in Italy in the 30's.  She also had
>> strength in the middle and at the bottom of her voice.
>> 
>> The point is, there are no set rules.  Each singer, each voice in
>> individual and it is best to know what suits you and what doesn't.  Freni
>> had a soft grained, luxurious voice.  It was sizeable.  Probably three
>> sizes bigger than Albanese but Albanese had cut at the top of the voice.
>> She also seems to have gotten Tosca out of her system rather quickly.  I
>> don't think it was in her rep very long.  Of course, at the end, after she
>> left the Met she did some silly things like Aida, but what the heck, she
>> was already in her late 50's and had nothing to lose.
>> 
>> Enough rambling - its about 110 here in Fountain Hills and I am going to
>> jump in the pool.
>> 
>> Donald
>> 
>> On Sun, Jun 18, 2017 at 1:22 PM, Les Mitnick <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> 
>>> It kind of surprises me (a little) that Tosca should generate so much
>>> discussion here.
>>> Perhaps I've tired of it, but I of course was greatly thrilled by it when
>>> I first heard it as a
>>> teen.  Of course I was raised on the legendary Callas/di Stefano/Gobbi -
>>> de Sabada
>>> recording, but I also later acquired those Tosca recordings with Tebaldi,
>>> Milanov, Caballe,
>>> Freni, Price, and others.
>>>     Denounce me as a Philistine if you will, but I have a hard time
>>> wrapping my head
>>> around the fact that every great soprano with an even moderate sized voice
>>> has taken on
>>> Tosca.  Rosa Ponselle was a very wise artist.  She is the only major great
>>> soprano who,
>>> to my knowledge, never went near it.  Freni recorded it twice, but (also
>>> to my
>>> knowledge) never attempted Tosca onstage.
>>>     The role itself, while glamorous and containing the "Visi d'Arte",
>>> is to my ears very
>>> punishing for the soprano voice.  Of course, it's the second act that's so
>>> dangerous, what
>>> with all that screaming and carrying-on with Scarpia to be interrupted by
>>> the need for a
>>> perfectly beautiful and controlled vocal line for the aria, followed by
>>> more screaming and
>>> carrying on to the end of the act ------ which makes me wonder why so many
>>> truly great
>>> sopranos have chosen to undertake it.  The third act is no piece of cake
>>> either.
>>>     I was very disappointed that Sondra Radvanovsky choose to do Tosca
>>> on the stage. In
>>> my opinion, I can't see why a notable Norma would even want to bother with
>>> Tosca. Most
>>> of Callas' Toscas were at the end of her career, with just a small number
>>> peppered during
>>> her prime years (the Met, where Bing offered her little else other than
>>> Violetta and Lucia
>>> and those debut Normas).  She herself admitted her dislike for the role.
>>> Albanese, who
>>> actually had a huge enough top (surprisingly), managed to achieve a good
>>> success with it
>>> at the Met in 1952 and 1957).  Tebaldi had the beauty of appearance, a
>>> huge voice, and
>>> could manage the top Cs well enough prior to 1960.  After that, the
>>> extreme uppermost
>>> portion of her voice (B and C) was a matter of pot luck.  But she still
>>> could deliver a
>>> grand and valid Tosca.  Finally, despite two complete studio recordings
>>> (and a 1962
>>> performance on Sony from the Met), Leontyne Price also discarded the role.
>>>    The best Tosca I ever heard onstage was Regine Crespin, who produced
>>> a second act
>>> (with Gobbi) that remains forever burned into my brain ------- and her
>>> voice at the time
>>> was huge and abundant right up to the top C.  But by the late 1960's, she
>>> dropped the
>>> role and never made a commercial recording of it.  I never saw Callas do
>>> it, except on
>>> those two videos of Act II from 1958 and 1964), but I can certainly see
>>> why she caused
>>> so much excitement in it).
>>>    Dorothy Kirsten is to me an amazing and vastly under-rated soprano.
>>> She sang all
>>> the Puccini roles with great distinction, stopping only at Turandot.  How
>>> she managed it is
>>> still a mystery to me.  I think she was a victim of bad timing (singing in
>>> a generation that
>>> already had Callas, Tebaldi, Milanov, Steber, Price, Crespin, etc.)
>>>    Bottom line:  Tosca can be as dangerous for the voice as Turandot.
>>> It's a very "big
>>> sing" and I think it's popularity has encouraged a lot of sopranos to
>>> undertake it, and
>>> some have paid a price.  Smarter artists try to sing it as little as
>>> possible.  Others should
>>> follow Ponselle's and Freni's example and not sing it at all.
>>> 
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