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Subject: Re: Renata Scotto was Adriana etc.
From: Bob Rideout <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Bob Rideout <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Wed, 10 Oct 2018 09:23:10 -0400

text/plain (72 lines)

You aren't the first, and I imagine you won't be the last!

It would be good to know when you saw her and what you saw.

I saw her in twenty one roles, starting in 1965 and ending in about
1980. I did not see her in Francesca, Macbeth or Norma, though I
have heard them and all have moments. The Db in the Sleepwalking
Scene is simply magnificent. There was a lot of vocal insecurity after
1978 and I more or less closed the book around that time.

But, I say without hesitation that her Butterfly, Gilda, Marguerite in
Faust, Tosca (which I saw in Philadelphia before she did it at the Met)
Elena in Vespri in 74, Lucia, the three Trittico heroines, Adina and
Desdemona were superb both as music and drama. Her Amina from
Philadelphia, which exists on tape in good sound, Norina from Florence,
and especially her Isabella in Robert le Diable, also from Florence,
and Anna Bolena from Philadelphia, are jaw dropping vocal displays,
which my life would be much the poorer for no knowing. There are others,
but you get the picture.

She was, at her best, as fine a vocalist as Callas, and her ability to
sculpt a line of music so that you can almost see its contours had
no equal in my experience. She was a very special part of my musical
life, a series of memories I would not trade for the World!

You need not agree; we will both survive it!


On Wed, Oct 10, 2018 at 08:51 Buoso Donati <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> I usually concur with Mr. Rideout's taste in singers, except when it comes
> to Renata Scotto.
> With her decision to become the next Callas (the slimming down and taking
> on
> roles much too heavy for her voice) she became a chore to hear as well as
> to
> watch.
> Contorted facial expressions (signing out of the side of her mouth in an
> attempt to control a wobble) scenery chewing passing for acting.
> And the screeching....
> I say this after having to sat through many of her performances at the Met
> for well over a decade. There really was no other option if you wanted to
> attend live opera performances of anything in the Italian repertory; Jimmy
> cast her in everything, including Musetta.
> Who could forget her Norma? I wish I could.
> Her last performances of Butterfly? People were walking out in droves.
> To her credit, I often listen to her Butterfly recording with Barbirolli
> and
> her Verismo album under Gavazzeni...and that's about it.

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