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Subject: Re: Sirius 'Trovatore'
From: Donald Levine <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Donald Levine <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Tue, 29 Aug 2017 10:17:15 -0700
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I will take a guess at this.  First of all, the mezzo was Biserka Cvejic.
At best, she was acceptable.  Usually, less than that.    As for Tucker and
Merrill.  Those violent accents which became more accentuated as he grew
older are what always bothered me about Tucker.  I used to call his vocal
line bumps and grinds.  Early on and mid career, of course it wasn't so.
The vocalism was gorgeous and the legato could be exemplary.  But by the
late 60's early 70's, he was sort of the late Leontyne Price of tenors as
his exaggerations of the vocal line became more and more.  But like Price,
he could also produce gorgeous legato lines that would be the envy of his
colleagues.  Taste got the best of him.  As for Merrill, less so.  The
voice had darkened with a lower range that was superior to most of his
Verdi baritone colleagues and that may be why you think he might have
lowered Il balen.  Generally, he sang things in key.  Again, I don't have
this in front of me and it's been years since I heard it so I am guessing.
Yes, Ed would be an invaluable source here.

Donald (L'altro)

On Tue, Aug 29, 2017 at 8:39 AM, David Kubiak <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> I listened to a '67 'Trovatore' yesterday with Arroyo, Tucker, Merrill, and
> that terrible Slavic mezzo Bing used to hire.  Arroyo was quite good, but
> the two men sang with such violent vocal accents that the effect sometimes
> approached the Marx brothers.  But my question is about 'Il balen'.  It
> sounded low to me.  Did the Met transpose it for Merrill late in his
> career?
>  It's not an aria I associate with that treatment.  (I miss Ed Rosen with a
> question like this; I'd have an answer in five minutes.)
>
> Thanks.
>
> David Kubiak
>
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