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Subject: Re: Caballe (my evil thoughts), was 1973 Norma
From: David Shengold <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:David Shengold <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Thu, 27 Jul 2017 23:21:27 +0000

text/plain (26 lines)

This is ironic, in that Caballe has stated that when as a young woman she moved to Basel and later Bremen got involved in the German opera system, her idol was ... Elisabeth Gruemmer!
My experiences with her were all over the map:
Best by far was NORMA at the Met with Verrett (Marti's debut...); maybe after that, the two Semiramides  San Fran w/Horne and Morris ( one of the best things he ever did). She was pretty terrible in the Met ARIADNE and at rock bottom in the San Fran ERNANI in 1984.
I heard a basically bad Strauss concert  (VLL , SALOME final scene) with the NY Phil at Tanglewood, a good Park concert ( and rehearsal) with Horne in San Fran, a later iffy recital with much charm in which she ventured that improvised "Sola son io"  from SANCIA DI CASTILIA.
The recordings I do listen to still; both the studio and live  Carnegie BORGIA, the Giuliani DON CARLO, "Verdi Rarities".
BTW, Max , one can hear her Donna Elvira, perhaps her first live recording available and a very mixed bag: DON G under Gielen from Lisbon with Stich-Randall, Waechter, Kmentt, Kunz (a style in Mozart's da Ponte opera of which one welcomes the extinction!) and Otto, maybe 1960?

Best- David

Max Paley wrote:

"A singer who took clarity of diction extremely seriously was Elisabeth Gruemmer. Colleagues reported her sometimes, in rehearsals, bringing herself to the point of tears with self-frustration at the effort to get both words and tone exactly right."

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