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Subject: Re: "Baritenor?"
From: Harold Byrnes <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:[log in to unmask]
Date:Sat, 1 Mar 1997 01:19:13 -0800
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My friend, Bill Kasimer, wrote:

>Besides, it's manifestly better than the far more accepted term
>"bass-baritone".  Any term that encompasses Friedrich Schorr, Paul
Robeson, Jose >van Dam, and James Morris (four singers often labelled as
such) is next to useless.

Although I seldom disagree with Bill, this is one time I must comment on
his choice of juxtaposition. Paul Robeson certainly doesn't fall into any
category remotely resembling bass-baritone, having a true bass timbre and
completely lacking any baritone high notes. James Morris, from the
beginning, has always been classified as a basso by the Met, even though
he makes frequent forays into baritone roles. Singers like George London,
however, who are considered true bass-baritones, were always classified
as baritones by the Met. On the other hand, Bill is correct about Schorr
and van Dam. Neither has a true bass timbre, and really do fall into the
bass-baritone classification, although I believe Schorr was a truer
baritone than van Dam. If what I have said is indeed fact,  then it would
appear that the term bass-baritone is not as useless as Bill would make
it. Hal

Hal Byrnes ([log in to unmask])

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