On Thu, 3 Jul 1997, Micheal F. Anders wrote:
> The one thing the I absolutely did NOT like was the Lo Zio Bonzo scene. What
> was the director thinking? I mean......this is perhaps one of the best
> films I have every seen and this scene almost ruined the whole piece!! Again,
> that's just my opinion...and I'm sure that many of the listers probably think
> I'm an idiot!....so there's no need to flame me!
As I and another lister (sorry I forgot his name) commented on
this film last Fall when it was first released, the Bonzo scene is done
this way to imitate old-fashioned Chinese/Japanese movie techniques from
the 1940s-50s. Chinese stories with mythological elements often have
characters depicted as ghosts and spirits, and I am convinced this is
what Mitterand is trying to do here. It is not meant to be 'realistic'
as such. Bonzo and his attendants are depicted as spirits and thus
flying through the air. I know this scene bothers a lot of people, but
like it or not, it is a legitimate Asian movie technique of years past.
About Ying Huang - I think hers is an extraordinary voice. Just
listen to her new CD on Sony. This Butterfly film will not prepare you
for the quality of her singing (ranging from Rossini toDonizetti to
Puccini and Verdi). Very idiomatic Italian (coached by none other than
Renata Scotto) and fresh, clear crystalline tone, without edge even in
the top range.There is not a whole lot of characterization, a common
complaint of new singers without much stage experience. I have never
heard her live, but Wah Kuen Chan, lister from Montreal heard her last
Fall at the Lanaudiere Festival. He finds her voice beautiful and
clear, if underpowered. Quite rightly she can't tackle something like
Butterfly on stage. She is scheduled to sing Nanetta in Koln under
Conlon next season, a much more congenial role for her. She will also be
giving a concert this summer in Cincinnati. If any lister will be
attending that concert, please give us a report.
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