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Subject: Re: Victoria de los Angeles (was Spanish opera- Marina)
From: Don <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Don <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Sun, 24 Dec 2017 06:45:16 -0700
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We attended a performance of Villa Lobos' opera Yerma in Spanish years ago
in Santa Fe.  I wonder why it has not been taken up at other houses.
Unfortunately the only thing I can remember about it is that the soprano
who sang Yerma sang it with her arm in a sling as she had broken her arm.
dond

On Sun, Dec 24, 2017 at 5:25 AM, Bob Rideout <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Tom
>
> A couple of things.
>
> Tebaldi's last Violettas were, as far as I can tell, at Havana in 1957.
> Callas' last were at Dallas in 58, So, I have no idea what the 1959
> comments are about. Tebaldi, btw, did transpose part of Act 1. Callas
> did not.
>
> As far as the recording of Traviata is concerned, Callas recorded Violetta
> for Cetra in 1953, and her contract specified that she could not record it
> again for x years, I think 5. Serafin and Legge wanted to have at least
> one contemporary Traviata in its catalogue, and decided they could not
> wait until Maria was available. They recorded it with Stella, Di Stefano
> and
> Gobbi in 1955. Callas went absolutely nuts, and vowed neither to speak
> or record with Serafin ever again. It was a major rupture! They did
> reconcile a number of years later. When de los Angeles recorded it in
> 1959, Callas had already given up the role. There was no conflict!
>
> Bob
>
> On Sat, Dec 23, 2017 at 21:21 tom ponti <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>
> > Perhaps not much to do with Spanish Opera, but earlier tonight I listened
> > to an interview with Victoria de Los Angeles at her home when in her
> > seventies. The only two tenors she mentions were Bjorling and Gedda.  She
> > loved Gedda and adored Jussi. She claimed that Jussi's voice live was far
> > more beautiful live than on recordings. The first time she heard him live
> > was at the Met when he was rehearsing on stage. She was off stage, but
> > stunned by the sound of his voice. She also said that in 1959 she, Callas
> > and Tebaldi performed Violetta that year. She claimed that she was the
> only
> > one of the three who sang the role in the original key. True? She also
> she
> > loved Serafin and said that he seemed very fond of her too. I have read
> > that Callas was furious when Serafin conducted Victoria on the Angel
> > Traviata recording and she did not speak to him for some time afterword.
> It
> > is surprising that Victoria would have been given that recording over
> > Callas, but I am glad she got to record the role.  Have been listening to
> > many great sopranos lately, vocally more spectacular than Victoria, but
> she
> > still enchants me more than any other great soprano.  Can't Help It!
> >
> >
> > ________________________________
> > From: Discussion of opera and related issues <[log in to unmask]
> >
> > on behalf of Myriam Hernandez <[log in to unmask]>
> > Sent: Saturday, December 23, 2017 9:05 PM
> > To: [log in to unmask]
> > Subject: Re: [OPERA-L] Spanish opera- Marina
> >
> > Recently, I found on YouTube a video of a complete performance of Marina,
> > starring Spanish coloratura, Mariola Cantarero, and tenor Celso Albelo,
> who
> > were excellent coping with the vocal demands of their respective roles.
> > Marina's music is very similar to Donizetti's and Verdi's music. The
> > soprano's cadenzas throughout the opera reminds me of Lucia's cadenzas in
> > the Mad Scene, and the brief quartet in Act 1 of Marina has shades of
> > Rigoletto's quartet. It could be said that the recording of Marina in the
> > sixties, starring Pilar Alvarez and Alfredo Kraus, could be considered as
> > the standard for vocal excellence, but Jaime Aragall also made an
> excellent
> > reading of the tenor's role, and more recently Cantarero and Albelo, as
> > aforementioned. In my opinion, there is no question that Marina is a gem
> of
> > the Spanish operatic repertory.
> >
> > Myriam
> >
> > On Sat, Dec 23, 2017 at 5:40 PM, Don <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> >
> > > There are a couple of complete videos of Marina on  Youtube as well as
> > some
> > > audio only performances.  One is with Maria Bayou and Alfredo Kraus.
> > > dond
> > >
> > > On Sat, Dec 23, 2017 at 1:38 PM, Juan Dzazopulos <
> [log in to unmask]
> > >
> > > wrote:
> > >
> > > > I wonder why nobody has mentioned what I consider if not the best at
> > > least
> > > > the better known Spanish opera of all times. I refer to "Marina" by
> > > Emilio
> > > > Arrieta.
> > > > "Marina" had its premiere as a zarzuela in 1855 but was later changed
> > > into
> > > > an opera and as such had its premiere at the Teatro Real de Madrid in
> > > 1871.
> > > > It was the first opera ever presented there in Spanish language. The
> > > > leading tenor role was sung by the Italian tenor Enrico Tamberlik
> > > > (1820-1889).
> > > > "Marina" has been recorded in selections or complete 11 times and it
> > can
> > > > be also found in at least 5 DVDs. It is a difficult opera and has
> been
> > a
> > > > challenge for most Spanish tenors (in brackets the recording year):
> > José
> > > > Palet (1916), Miguel Fleta (1926), Hipólito Lázaro (1930), Fernando
> > Bañó
> > > > Ferrnado (1954), Alfrdo Kraus (twice, 1965 and 1998), Bernabé Martí
> > > (1966)
> > > > and Jaime Aragall (1967).
> > > >
> > > > My favorite recording is that of 1930 for Spanish Columbia, with an
> > "all
> > > > stars" cast: Hipólito Lázaro (Jorge), Mercedes Capsir (Marina),
> Marcos
> > > > Redondo (Roque) and José Mardones (Pascual).
> > > > It has been transferred to LP,  and later to  CD, at least by three
> > > > different companies (Aria Recordings; Blue Moon and Symposium. I
> > > recommend
> > > > without reservations the last one, if you can find it.
> > > >
> > > > If you want to know what other Spanish works (zarzuelas/operas) are
> my
> > > > favorite, after "Marina", this is the list: Luisa Fernanda, Doña
> > > > Francisquita, Los Gavilanes, La Dolores, La Verbena de la Paloma, La
> > Rosa
> > > > del Azafrán, La Leyenda del Beso, La Dolorosa (not to be confused
> with
> > La
> > > > Dolores), La Canción del Olvido, Maruxa, Las Golondrinas and those
> > > composed
> > > > by Pablo Sorozábal: La Tabernera del Puerto, La del Manojo de Rosas,
> > > Black
> > > > el Payaso,La Isla de las Perlas and  Don Manolito.
> > > >
> > > > A happy and peaceful Christmas for you all,
> > > >
> > > > JUAN
> > > > --------------------
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > El Sat, 23 Dec 2017 17:16:02 +0000
> > > >  "ls111553 ." <[log in to unmask]> escribió:
> > > >
> > > > Although I'm not big a zarzuela enthusiast, I do enjoy many wonderful
> > > >> tunes, like the prelude to Bretón's La Dolores, which to me has
> always
> > > >> been
> > > >> "the mother of all jotas". But there is a handful of works that I
> love
> > > but
> > > >> which seldom "export" well, as they rely on a more than passing
> > > >> familiarity
> > > >> with their regional context and performers to whom this comes
> > naturally
> > > in
> > > >> order to "speak" to their audiences. The same can be said of
> Viennese
> > > >> operettas and such. We may enjoy what we hear, but some key elements
> > of
> > > >> style and background not always go beyond passport check. It is a
> joy
> > to
> > > >> experience El rey que rabió, Gigantes y cabezudos, the very
> > > >> tongue-in-cheek
> > > >> Las Leandras (is there a "catchier" tune than Los nardos?) in
> Madrid,
> > > with
> > > >> a cast that "gets" it right. That said, whenever a "Domingoish"
> tenor
> > > >> breaks into "No puede ser" as an encore, I head straight to the
> > parking
> > > >> lot, muttering exactly those words with a couple of "regional"
> > > >> embellishments added.
> > > >>
> > > >> Ah, the WNO upper-crusty set! Recently, at Kennedy Center, I was
> > > >> introduced
> > > >> to someone who turned out to be a very agreeable person, but whose
> > first
> > > >> line of conversation (right after "pleased to meet you") was "I grew
> > up
> > > in
> > > >> Ecuador, but my father did not allow us to learn any Spanish. Only
> > > French
> > > >> and German". I suppose he didn't mean anything unpleasant, but the
> > > opening
> > > >> statement was kind of a shaker. Anyway, a quick look at the names
> > listed
> > > >> as
> > > >> main donors on the WNO program, may have given the lady you mention
> an
> > > >> idea
> > > >> of how many "maids" make it possible for her to listen to opera in
> > > >> "civilized" languages... while reading surtitles!
> > > >>
> > > >> On Wed, Dec 20, 2017 at 4:36 PM Alain Letort <[log in to unmask]>
> > wrote:
> > > >>
> > > >> Dear Idia and List:
> > > >>>
> > > >>> I don’t know whether Idia’s definition of “Spanish opera” includes
> > > >>> “zarzuelas.”  I am
> > > >>> assuming that it does, because the vast majority of of Spanish
> > musical
> > > >>> theatre pieces
> > > >>> consists of “zarzuelas,” which, like French “opéra-comiques,”
> include
> > > >>> quite a bit of spoken
> > > >>> dialogue.  As Wikipedia puts it, “early [Spanish] operas, however,
> > > failed
> > > >>> to catch the
> > > >>> imagination of the Spanish public. It was not until the increasing
> > > >>> popularity of such genres
> > > >>> as ballad opera and opéra-comique that opera in Spain started to
> gain
> > > >>> momentum, since
> > > >>> the use of speech in the vernacular inevitably encouraged Spanish
> > > >>> composers to develop
> > > >>> their own national style of opera: zarzuela.”
> > > >>>
> > > >>> Some twenty years ago, at the urging of Plácido Domingo, who was
> its
> > > >>> Artistic Director at
> > > >>> the time, The Washington Opera staged a couple of zarzuelas, in
> > which I
> > > >>> was privileged to
> > > >>> be a super : “El Gato Montés” by Manuel Penella and “Doña
> > Francisquita”
> > > >>> by
> > > >>> Amedeo Vives.
> > > >>> Wikipedia actually classifies a“El Gato Montés” as an opera, but
> > > Domingo
> > > >>> and TWO referrred
> > > >>> to it as a zarzuela, so who knows. A few years ago I saw a
> > performance
> > > of
> > > >>> the zarzuela
> > > >>> “Luisa Fernanda” by Federico Moreno Torroba at the beautiful
> Palacio
> > de
> > > >>> Bellas Artes in
> > > >>> Mexico City (the opera house boasts a terrific stained-glass stage
> > > >>> curtain
> > > >>> by Louis Comfort
> > > >>> Tiffany, which I believe is the only one of its kind in the world.)
> > > >>>
> > > >>> “El Gato Montés” includes the world-famous “paso doble” which in
> the
> > > >>> popular imagination
> > > >>> is always invariably linked to bullfights.  It can be heard at
> > > >>> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Osdg6ibxnWU .  A full performance
> of
> > [https://www.bing.com/th?id=OVP.lGxd2k4K8Vg8fYMiu0iteQHgFk&pid=Api]<
> > https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Osdg6ibxnWU>
> >
> > El Gato Montés - Manuel Penella Moreno [Pasodoble]<
> > https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Osdg6ibxnWU>
> > www.youtube.com
> > Esta composición se encuentra catalogada en: http://www.pasodobles.org -
> > El mayor repertorio musical sobre Marchas Ligeras, Pasodobles y Música
> para
> > Desfiles ...
> >
> >
> >
> > > >>> “Doña
> > > >>> Francisquita” (Gran Teatro del Liceo, Barcelona, 1987, with Alfredo
> > > >>> Kraus)
> > > >>> can be seen at
> > > >>> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bEyFxsQ651U.
> > [https://www.bing.com/th?id=OVP.1HPx9PAwjhpq8h609w4j4gEkDw&pid=Api]<
> > https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bEyFxsQ651U>
> >
> > Doña Francisquita - Alfredo Kraus y Enedina Lloris - Liceu 1988.m4v<
> > https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bEyFxsQ651U>
> > www.youtube.com
> > Ésta zarzuela la grabé en VHS de la 2 en 1988.. no la he visto
> > comercializada. Espero poder compartirla...
> >
> >
> >
> > > >>>
> > > >>> I enjoyed all three of these zarzuelas/opera tremendously.  Of the
> > > three,
> > > >>> I liked “Doña
> > > >>> Francisquita” best on account of the smashing tunes and gay (as in
> > > merry)
> > > >>> and colorful
> > > >>> dancing numbers it was filled with.  I actually was given a couple
> of
> > > >>> spoken lines in it on
> > > >>> account of my skill in foreign languages, so I was actually paid as
> > an
> > > >>> artist (as opposed to
> > > >>> super) and had to join AGMA (the American Guild of Musical Artists)
> > in
> > > >>> order to be allowed
> > > >>> to fill the position.  I am still a paid-up member of AGMA and that
> > > >>> membership card is one
> > > >>> of my proudest possessions.
> > > >>>
> > > >>> In my view, all three of these works provide a far more enjoyable
> > > evening
> > > >>> of musical
> > > >>> theatre than all the “Dead Man Walkings” and “Death of
> Klinghoffers”
> > > that
> > > >>> opera managers
> > > >>> insist on shoving down our throats.
> > > >>>
> > > >>> This view, unfortunately, was not shared by most TWO (Washington
> > Opera)
> > > >>> subscribers,
> > > >>> many of whom bitterly complained to TWO management (I understand
> some
> > > >>> people actually
> > > >>> cancelled their subscriptions).  “Doña Francisquita,” in
> particular,
> > > came
> > > >>> in for particular
> > > >>> invective and abuse  because many people felt there was far too
> much
> > > >>> Spanish dialogue
> > > >>> (even though there were surtitles).
> > > >>>
> > > >>> I also feel there was an undercurrent of racism underpinning some
> of
> > > the
> > > >>> criticism.  As one
> > > >>> bejeweled and becoiffed matron told me at a social function, “I
> don’t
> > > pay
> > > >>> all that money to
> > > >>> listen to a third-class opera in my maid’s language.”  I heard
> other
> > > >>> similar comments from
> > > >>> subscribers.
> > > >>>
> > > >>> Why is it that so many English speakers have such a negative view
> of
> > > >>> Spain, a beautiful
> > > >>> country of warm, artistic people with a great culture ?  The
> Spanish
> > > >>> Inquisition was
> > > >>> centuries ago, and Spain has been a democracy for 50 years now.
> > > >>>
> > > >>> I guess the TWO Board listened to the criticism because I do not
> > recall
> > > >>> that any zarzuela
> > > >>> was ever performed by TWO/WNO after “Doña Francisquita.”
> > > >>>
> > > >>> I hope the above is responsive to Idia’s question.
> > > >>>
> > > >>> Cheers and all the best,
> > > >>>
> > > >>> Alain
> > > >>>
> > > >>> Alain Letort
> > > >>> Washington, D.C.
> > > >>> Des Ungeheuers Höhle
> > > >>>
> > > >>> =====================================================
> > > >>> On Wed, 20 Dec 2017 12:18:11 -0500, Idia Legray <
> > [log in to unmask]>
> > > >>> wrote:
> > > >>>
> > > >>> >I know there are some wonderful Spanish composers and a few fine
> > > operas
> > > >>> >as well but why is there such a dearth of  top 10 popular operas
> by
> > > >>> Spanish
> > > >>> >composers and performances in major venues?
> > > >>>
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