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Subject: Re: Gay Pride Operas
From: Maria Louise Augusta Helleberg <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Maria Louise Augusta Helleberg <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Thu, 29 Jun 2017 22:22:44 +0200
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LULU! and Geschwitz...
Brokeback Mountain, Incoronazione di Poppea,...

2017-06-29 20:37 GMT+02:00 Donald Levine <[log in to unmask]>:

> I also loved the Luhrmann version of Boheme and he had the most beautiful
> cast - David Hobson and Cheryl Barker sang beautifully and were exquisite
> to look at.  I saw the Broadway version a few times and it was like wise
> beautifully cast (physically) and some of the singers were superb.  All
> were very good.  I could have done without the amplification however - the
> broadway theatre, I think it was the  Broadway, a big house by Broadway
> standards, was small enough for even young operatic voices to have been
> heard well.  It certainly beat the antics of 40-50 plus singers at the
> Met.  I will say however that the most exquisite La Boheme I ever heard was
> Freni and a by then grossly overweight Pavarotti in the late 80's under the
> baton of Carlos Kleiber.  It was heaven.  So yes, voice does trump (sorry
> for the use of that word) appearance when you are dealing with artistry of
> that level.  Pavarotti was close to his best, Freni, god bless her, was
> every bit as good as she was twenty years earlier.  This was the last time
> she sounded like the "young" Freni.  Two years later, she sang it with
> Placido Domingo under Christian Badea.  Both were wonderful but she no
> longer had that blush of youth which she still commanded two years
> earlier.  And of course, the 800 pound elephant was  in the room - the
> memory of Kleiber. He only gave 20 performances at the Met over two or
> three seasons but they were among the most memorable in the history of the
> house.  A giant who left us much too early.  Thank god the magnificent
> Mirella is still with us.  Kick me if I am wrong, but except for Daniela
> Dessi, Barbara Frittoli and Mariella Devia, both of whom I have always
> loved, the last great Italian sopranos were Freni, Scotto and Chiara.  Who
> is there today?  I know, a few nice singers but real giants?   I do have
> hopes for Maria Agresta and Carmen Giannatassio.  Time will tell.
>
> Donald
>
> On Thu, Jun 29, 2017 at 11:17 AM, Bob Rideout <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>
> > A very. brief comment on the "Baz" Boheme. It was very well sung by
> > the original TV cast, and it was, visually, the most totally convincing
> and
> > moving performance of the opera I have ever seen. I found it breathtaking
> >  in its focus and commitment.
> >
> > They say "to each his own". I guess that's one explanation :-)
> >
> > Bob
> >
> > On Thursday, June 29, 2017, ANGELO MAMMANO <[log in to unmask]
> > <javascript:_e(%7B%7D,'cvml',[log in to unmask]);>> wrote:
> >
> > > There was a Ballo production in Stockholm with Gedda which reportedly
> > > emphasized the actual
> > >
> > > sexual orientation of Gustavus .  He and Oscar were shown to be more
> than
> > > merely King and page.
> > >
> > > The San Francisco Opera Lucrezia Borgia with Fleming and Fabiano
> showed
> > > unusual intimacy
> > >
> > > between Gennaro and Orsini.  Certainly there was more intimacy between
> > the
> > > two than between
> > >
> > > any other characters in the opera.  I thought that the Boheme I saw on
> > > Broadway in the staging
> > >
> > > from the Australian Opera would be a little daring and show a possible
> > > same-sex relationship
> > >
> > > between Schaunard and Colline but it turned out to be perhaps the
> tamest
> > > and most boring I have
> > >
> > > ever seen.   I have seen more realistic and moving Bohemes from Amato
> > > Opera back in the 50's.
> > >
> > >
> > > Angelo from Boston
> > >
> > > >
> > > >     On June 29, 2017 at 12:08 PM Maxwell Paley <[log in to unmask]>
> > wrote:
> > > >
> > > >     I think there's a big difference between an definite gay theme
> vs.
> > a
> > > potential overtone of homoeroticism.
> > > >
> > > >     I've seen a homoerotic attraction portrayed between Don Carlo and
> > > Rodrigo that remains latent until Carlo realizes Rodrigo is dying.
> There
> > > was a particularly strong sense of that in a 1998 San Francisco
> > production
> > > with Sergei Larin as Carlo and Anthony Michaels Moore as Rodrigo.
> Larin's
> > > Carlo erupted with physical affection for Rodrigo
> > > >
> > > >     Homosexuality has been implied in some productions of "Ballo in
> > > Maschera" that resort to the Swedish characters and setting,
> particularly
> > > with Gustavus. It does create some cognitive dissonance with regard to
> > his
> > > passion for Amelia.
> > > >
> > > >     In both "Billy Budd" and "Death in Venice" there are
> > interpretations
> > > that do or don't involve specific homosexuality. Sometimes it's clear
> > that
> > > Claggart has repressed (or suppressed) lust for Billy, but it can also
> be
> > > portrayed that he's just incredibly jealous of Billy's ease,
> likeability
> > > and masculine beauty. Similarly Ashenbach can be experiencing an
> > > overwhelming sexual attraction to Tadzio, or Tadzio can represent a
> more
> > > abstract ideal of carefree beauty that is opposite to Aschenbach's
> > > previously heavily disciplined life.
> > > >
> > > >     Max Paley
> > > >
> > > >     Sent from my iPhone
> > > >
> > > >         > >
> > > > >         On Jun 29, 2017, at 08:18, Vesna Danilovic <
> > > [log in to unmask]> wrote:
> > > > >
> > > > >         I agree with the previous posters about some questionable
> > > inclusions though
> > > > >         don't want to criticize the article because the intentions
> > are
> > > honorable,
> > > > >         except to say that the list curiously omits some openly gay
> > > themes or
> > > > >         characters such as, already mentioned, HARVEY MILK and
> DEATH
> > > IN VENICE. For
> > > > >         characters, we can also add Countess Geschwitz in LULU, the
> > > first openly
> > > > >         gay character in any opera (someone please correct me if
> > there
> > > are earlier
> > > > >         examples). Or perhaps it would be a good occasion to
> > celebrate
> > > those
> > > > >         musicians and composers who made strides toward the culture
> > of
> > > tolerance in
> > > > >         many ways, including LGBT.
> > > > >
> > > > >         Vesna
> > > > >
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