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Subject: Re: Albert Innaurato -- "Purity of Heart"
From: Kiwi <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Kiwi <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Thu, 19 Oct 2017 12:26:31 -0400
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Many of the posts concerning Albert's passing were effusive and that, at 
time of death when we all strive to remember the best and forget the worst, 
is expected.  That doesn't mean the memory remains sacrosanct forever, or 
that only the best lives on while the worst is buried.  Just on the basis of 
the use of florid English to exalt and deify the man, some of the posts did 
indeed seem (way) over the top.  He was, after all, just a man, albeit one 
who brushed against greatness:  he carried on through his life as best he 
could with the strengths and weaknesses he had, just as the rest of us 
strive to do.  Sometimes the weaknesses got the best of him.

Early in my 'career' on Opera-L I received a fair share of cringe-inducing 
posts from him.  I simply learned not to take the bait and respond to any of 
his writings because his fragile ego could not accept criticism or rebuttal, 
even of the mild variety.  I did read most of what he posted and often 
learned much.  That does not mean he was always right, nor does it mean he 
was never without his biases, prejudices and blind spots.  He also firmly 
believed in his own correctness to the point of never ever admitting he 
might have been in error.  I hated to read those posts in which he was 
taking a fellow poster to the proverbial woodshed in the most disgusting, 
superior, insensitive manner.  Some were able to accept the nastiness as a 
reasonable price to 'learn' from Albert;  others felt far less forgiving. 
Both views are represented in the ongoing tribute.

I suspect the truth lies somewhere between the two extremes.  Albert appears 
to have had a spark of genius in him but it was of the quixotic sort which 
could not easily be harnessed or set to work.  Perhaps it was the 
frustration of feeling the gift but not being able to consistently access it 
that lead to his frustration.  Albert knew an encyclopedia worth of 
information about opera and music but his knowledge appeared to be black and 
white with no gray permitted and his most vile posts often attacked those 
who simply spoke of that gray.  Albert had insights into operas and 
performances and a way of capturing those insights that appealed to a lot of 
readers but turned away others because he rarely seemed capable of 
controlling his vitriol.  That said, if you actually scratch the surface, a 
lot of what he and his followers claim were original insights were fairly 
common: the idea that the loneliness of miners in Fanciulla drove the pathos 
of the piece is hardly breathtaking in its astuteness.  Years back, I 
remember reading a two-part story about La Scala in Opera News and thought 
at the time that the writer seemed to project whatever thoughts HE was 
having on others, twisting a lot of story to tell HIS version rather than 
simply reporting.  In the end, I thought the piece was absolutely 
unbalanced, something that should not be a take-away from a serious piece. 
I suspect that was in part because Albert was unable to separate his reality 
from true reality and once he took a position, he was not to be swayed.  I 
also believe that Albert was--just like the rest of us--enthralled by select 
personalities that colored his objectivity and reasoning.

In the end, it seems to me that Albert was a sad individual who lacked some 
of the key developmental communication aspects that bond people to each 
other.   Seems strange to say that about a writer but there you have it.  I 
think his unique voice will be missed;  I doubt that his evil twin voice 
will be.

I just hope he has finally found whatever peace he was looking for in life 
and is not somewhere criticizing a heavenly choir because they were offering 
a historically accurate performance.

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