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Subject: Re: Caballe's commercial recorded legacy; Anna Bolena; Giovanna Seymour
From: Sergio da Silva <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Sergio da Silva <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Wed, 10 Oct 2018 23:59:39 -0400
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I heard her live only once, lovely voice, exquisite pianissimo (I'll never
forget the pianissimo in "primavera" in "ISi, mi chiamano Mimi"), the
volume of the voice had diminished then though.
She exuded charisma.
Her best recordings to me are the Verdi and Rossini Rarities.
For complete Opera, the Tosca with Carrerras, Wixell led by Davis is superb.

On Wed, Oct 10, 2018 at 1:58 PM Donald Levine <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> I am very much in agreement with Max concerning Caballe.  At first, I was
> very turned off by the glottal cluck.   I felt it was a technical problem
> or personal interpretive choice - I was never quite sure.  It took years
> for that to stop bothering me and over the years, it did become less and
> less of an issue.  In concert, she could be exquisite and then there was
> that personality that flowed from the stage into the audience.  Her
> concerts like her compatriot De Los Angeles were enchanting.
>
> As for the recordings, the three original recitals,minus the coups de
> glotte had much that was so beautiful.    I was bowled over by the Salome.
> Close behind are the Traviata and her glorious Fiordiligi for Davis.  The
> one recordiing that I never warmed up to was the Gioconda.  I never really
> like her use of chest voice on that.  It was a hollow, ugly sound totally
> out of synch with the rest of the voice.  It was almost like a whine.  It
> just never appealed to me the way she did it and the way it came out.
>
> The piano of course was her great trick.  I found it a somewhat disembodied
> sound, akin to Gencer's but with a bit more body behind it.  It was not the
> same as Milanov's.  Milanov seemed to be able to carry the full weight of
> the voice into the piano.
>
> She was a great singer.  Not perfect.  The voice beautiful as it was, was
> not perfect but she could be an imaginative and there was a fine musical
> mind behind everything she did - even when the carried things to excess.
> She did it her way and most of us loved it and loved her for it.  Her last
> recital appearances were like Bergonzi's, an intensely personal event.
>
> One more recording that I loved was her duet recital with Giuseppe Di
> Stefano.  He was clearly having problems but her singing in the Pearl
> Fishers duet and the big scena from Francesca da Rimini, especially the
> Francesca, were haunting.
>
> Donald
>
> On Tue, Oct 9, 2018 at 3:56 PM Max Paley <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>
> > Do any of you remember how, when her first major recordings appeared (the
> > RCA aria recital and complete “Lucrezia Borgia”) how perturbed and
> > perplexed the critics were about her “glottal clunk”? Enough that she
> felt
> > she had to justify in a few interviews the “coup de glotte” that had been
> > part of her training and where and when she did and didn’t use it. Nobody
> > even talks about it anymore.
> >
> > I didn’t always find her voice beautiful. The luminous pianissimo were
> > always spectacularly gorgeous but sometimes I found the actual sound of
> the
> > voice somewhat reedy, and even in her prime, forte high notes could be
> hard
> > and even squally. But she had musical magic: she spun those sounds into
> > graceful, arched phrases of incredible delicacy and length.
> >
> > As Turandot and as Tosca, I heard her pump out some high Cs that could go
> > toe to toe with Nilsson.
> >
> > The record that completely dazzled me when it first came out was that RCA
> > LP “Rossini Rarities.” At the time, I wasn’t even that big on Rossini
> (yet)
> > but I was mesmerized by the exquisite singing and music making.
> >
> > Like Les, I was also surprised and delighted by her Salome. Delicacy,
> > sensuousness, youth but lying in wait were power and volume of immense
> > proportion.
> >
> > I was never quite settled on her recorded Aida. Some stunning effects,
> > also some pushing. But, exquisite as they were, those spun sugar
> pianissimi
> > never quite sounded like Verdi to me, particularly contrasted with a real
> > Verdian like her colleague on the recording, Cossotto.
> >
> > Perhaps my favorite recording of hers: her dazzling Fiordiligi for Colin
> > Davis.
> >
> > Max Paley
> >
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