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Subject: Re: Seconda Donna - Angela Meade
From: Les Mitnick <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Les Mitnick <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Wed, 13 Dec 2017 16:34:15 -0600
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I emphatically agree!  Sills and Verrett were spectacular in this opera (which, strangely, hasn't been heard anywhere since that I know of), and their EMI recording has even more interpolations by Sills. At the time, I was surprised that Horne wasn't asked to sing in this revival, but after reading about the friction between Sills and Horne, I can understand it.  I never expected to hear such a display of spectacular vocalism and sheer abandonment from Verrett, who was one hell of a "hot" singer as well as a great one.  On the Met broadcast, it's pretty potent, but on the EMI recording, both ladies are downright demonic with their embellishments.  It's all but demented.  Love it!
    The hell with "taste" and "chastity" in bel canto.  If you got the goods to cook with, throw them into a pressure cooker and go for broke!  Sills knew how to make some spectacular effects, as evidenced by her recordings of Bolena, Stuarda, Devereux, and "Siege".  She embellishes Bolena with notes that I've heard from no one else.  Ditto for Verrett on this recorded performance.  In fact, Verrett tosses out some blazing top Cs and Ds  that Horne herself leaves out.
> On December 13, 2017 at 9:34 AM Larry Kellum <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> 
> 
> Sills begged Schippers to pull her out of "mezzo" waters at Met debut
> "Siege". Between her and Verrett i never heard so many blazing high
> c's and d's in one sitting!! YOU GOT IT....................go for it!
> The day will come when you cant sing anything but Gertrude in
> Hansel...........so interpolate away IN THIS
> rep........................while the oven is still hot! ANYONE
> AGREE???????????? Opera is theater w/in
> theater!....................Larry
> 
> On Tue, Dec 12, 2017 at 11:35 AM, Stephen Charitan <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> > Actually, Sutherland / Bonynge did a lot to pull Semiramide up into soprano
> > territory.  This was the last role Rossini wrote for his mezzoish wife
> > Isabella Colbran and it is actually focused lower than Sutherland's ideal
> > comfort zone.  I'm not complaining because Sutherland is magnificent in the
> > role, but I think it fits more naturally in Di Donato's range.  Elena in
> > Donna del Lago is also a Colbran role, and I thought it was a triumph for J
> > Di D...
> >
> > You are right about Meade's strong vibrato - it may be the basis of her
> > perceived wobble as well as the "indication" she gives of producing an
> > actual trill.  I've seen her live 4 times and the only fully satisfying
> > performance was outside her supposed Bel Canto specialization - Alice Ford
> > in Falstaff.  As Nanki-poo sings, the voice otherwise seems to be a "thing
> > of shreds and patches..."
> >
> > Gruberova may not have a wobble, but she has turned herself into Edita
> > Desmond:
> >
> > https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PlGhKikmx8o
> >
> >
> > On Tue, Dec 12, 2017 at 2:00 AM, Sergio da Silva <[log in to unmask]>
> > wrote:
> >
> >> Well i.m.h.o di Donato struggled with Semiramide although she had her
> >> moments, she is a true mezzo and singing in the higher soprano tessitura is
> >> not her best.
> >> Meade has a quick vibrato quite pronounced but it was not a wobble last I
> >> heard her live a few years ago.
> >> On the topic of singers who had not developed a wobble I’d include Placido
> >> Domingo until recently (nowadays he has developed one), Jose van Dam, Leo
> >> Nucci, Mariella Devia, Leontyne Price and Edita Gruberova (there are more
> >> but these come to mind)
> >
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