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Subject: "S" as possessive and plural; singing in a foreign language (formerly, Fascinating article with Jonas Kaufmann from Australia
From: RAYMOND GOUIN <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:RAYMOND GOUIN <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Sun, 6 Aug 2017 17:29:59 -0400
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Likely just a reflex action because people far more often use "s" as a possessive rather than a plural when it comes to the names of individuals.  Usage increase is because most people now have the ability to -- and do -- type frequently as against in pre-computer days when they did not and thus had to search out individual keys to compose words and messages.


Before computers, I used to boast that I could type in several languages, i.e., that I was so familiar with typing foreign words that I could move at a relatively fast speed in languages other than English   That was due to my cataloging some 16,000 opera selections/operas/names of singers and composers.  It comes down to physical familiarity with typing foreign words.


BTW, it is also the lack of such physical familiarity with the pronunciation/singing of words in languages other than your native tongue that has kept some singers from singing or limiting their singing in languages other than their own. The term most often utilized is that they are "uncomfortable" in singing in a language other than their own.  What they actually mean is that it is more difficult for them to pronounce the vowels and words because they are not used to singing them. 


Because of my upbringing and schooling, I can think in two languages.  Individuals who know only one language and then learn a second have to develop a great familiarity with the second to avoid the following sequence -- hear a foreign sentence, translate your response from English to that foreign language, speak your response  When I am dealing with Italian (which is not one of my two, basic languages) I can think more quickly when I am reading the words but -- unless I am careful -- I become tongue tied  in speaking Italian because I so rarely do so.


Your hands are used to typing patterns.  Your mouth is used to patterns of speech.


Best.

Ray


***

> 
>     On August 6, 2017 at 4:44 PM Kenneth Bleeth <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> 
>     This is off-topic, but I'm continually surprised that perfectly literate
>     writers (Mr. Levine, you happen to be my immediate example, but don't take
>     it personally; you have plenty of worthy company) increasingly use
>     apostrophes to form plurals with "s" (e.g. "Otello's," "Norma's"). With the
>     exception of plurals of letters used as single words (e.g. "p's and q's"),
>     numerical figures ditto (e.g. "6's and 7's"), and (perhaps) acronyms
>     ("CEO's"), "s" plurals in English don't take an apostrophe. Any thoughts on
>     why this usage, if not exactly ubiquitous, is now fairly common?
> 
>     On Sun, Aug 6, 2017 at 4:11 PM, Donald Levine <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> 
>         > > 
> >         David,
> > 
> >         I am very well aware of this. I was just using the Met as an example and
> >         as for Otello's and Norma's, they never grew on every tree but it seemed
> >         that after Sutherland and Caballe, every soprano and her sister was
> >         attempting Norma, whether they had the goods or not. And as for your list
> >         of Otello's, I would rate as superb Zenatello, Zanelli, Pertili, Merli,
> >         Franz and the rest to whom I would add Jacques Urlus, Jose Luccioni, and
> >         Georges Thill, not to mention Lauritz Melchior who sang it in many houses,
> >         just not at the Met. That wasn't my point. In any generation the list of
> >         viable candidates for both roles is slim. My point is your list stretches
> >         from the end of the 19th century to today, that's a reach of over 120
> >         years. Not that many singers considering the time span. There are
> >         probably others who were superb that got lost in the dustbin of history
> >         that we barely remember today. I'm not sure but going back to the list of
> >         major tenors, I think Tino Pattiera and Alfred Piccaver might have sung the
> >         role also. I know Pattiera made recordings from Otello including the duets
> >         with Meta Seinemeyer.
> > 
> >         Perhaps I didn't express my thoughts well, my point is no matter how many
> >         singers there are doing Otello or Norma, for that matter, truly viable
> >         candidates are few, and I used its history at the Met as an example.
> >         Otello is a problem because the role lies mainly in the middle and there is
> >         such tremendous pumping of the voice in the middle with the necessity to
> >         also make your points at the top. By the end of the second act (and that
> >         is the real killer), you have to have something in reserve to sing the
> >         third act, which is not easy either. Emotionally and vocally, the role
> >         takes a tremendous toll. If I had to count the truly great Otello's of the
> >         twentieth century, I doubt we would hit ten, maybe fifteen if we were
> >         lucky.
> > 
> >         Donald
> > 
> >         On Fri, Aug 4, 2017 at 10:29 PM, David Shengold <[log in to unmask]>
> >         wrote:
> > 
> >         >
> > 
> >             > > > 
> > >             Donald Levine <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> > > 
> > >             "There is something to be said for this. Otello at the Met in the 20th
> > >             century included Leo Slezak in 1913 and then nothing until Giovanni
> > >             Martinelli did it in 1938. Then there was Torsten Ralf, Set Svanholm and
> > >             Ramon Vinay then Del Monaco and after him Vickers, McCracken, and
> > >             Domingo.
> > >             Yes there were others, notably in Europe Carlo Cossutta a contemporary
> > >             of
> > >             Domingo but today its it becoming almost a repertory piece."
> > > 
> > >             .....
> > > 
> > >             With respect, the key phrase here-- at least you state it, it's often
> > >             just
> > >             implicit hereabouts!- is "at the Met".
> > > 
> > >             Other leading 20th century Otellos would include Giovanni Zenatello,
> > >             Renato Zanelli, Aureliano Pertile, Francesco Merli, Paul Franz, Ivan
> > >             Ershov, Cesar Vezzani, Wolfgang Windgassen, Charles Craig, Giuseppe
> > >             Giacomini, Vladimir Atllantov.
> > > 
> > >             Plus there were tenors who took it on (apparently) creditably enough, the
> > >             likes of Giuseppe Oxilia, Antonio Paoli, Carlos Guichandut, Hans Kaart,
> > >             Renato Francesconi, Zurab Anzhaparidze, the unique (speriam!) Frank
> > >             Mullings, Franz Voelker (offstage horses neigh) , Josep Gostic, Vladimir
> > >             Galouzine, James King, Max Lorenz, Pier Mirando Ferraro.
> > > 
> > >             I'm sure there are more in both categories. My point is that the role's
> > >             casting history is nowhere near so narrow as its *Met* history.
> > > 
> > >             (Melchior also sang Otello in Chicago, I believe-- the site of
> > >             Martinelli's Trstan!)
> > > 
> > >             Cheers - David Shengold
> > > 
> > >         > > 
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