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Subject: Vishnevskaya
From: David Shengold <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:David Shengold <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Mon, 9 Jul 2018 08:55:38 +0000

text/plain (27 lines)

"Galina Vishnevskaya was the most important and in my opinion (only), the
greatest Russian singer of the twentieth century.  The range was immense,
her qualities as an opera singer and as a singer of songs was unrivaled,
and before hardness set in, the voice was so truly beautiful. etc"

Agree with most all of whet you and others have writen about Vishnevskaya and her historical qualities vis a vis those of Netrebko, an excellent vocalist and increasingy exciting singing acrtess who - unlike Vishnevskaya-- has created no important music nor left no definite recordings of anything.
I would remind everyone that besides the Moscow studio Verdi REQUIEM there is a live Leningrad Philharmonic performance  from 1960 under Melik-Pashaev with the staggering Irina Arkhipova instead of Nina Isakova as well as Vladimir Ivanovsky and Ivan Petrov ( who are on the Muscovite performance as well). I like both, but the live one better ( n.b. Ivanovsky, though a fine recorded Grigori/Dmitri, is not remotely in the Bjoerling/Bergonzi/Pavarotti class in this music).

And still: "the greatest Russian singer of the twentieth century"? If you said 'female singer" I might agree, but what about Chaliapin? A total game changer for the art form in terms of vocalism and dramatic artistry who left his mark on many roles-- not only Russian ones--left a studio movie (Pabst's unforgettable DON QUIXOTE) and created much music ( including Ibert's songs for that movie, Massenet's DON QUICHOTTE, Rachmaninoff's cantata "Spring", Salieri in Rimsky's MOZART AND SALIERI. Internationally, Chaliapin's name and reputation were familiar to tens of thousands who never set foot inside an opera house or concert hall, as with Caruso or the Greek-American diva whose vocal perfection vis a vis her "Coca-Cola" rivals Takis has done so much here to  underline.
-David Shengold

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