Eric Fettmann wrote:
> if you're looking for pure operatic dish, then rush
> out and get this issue now. It almost puts Parterre Box to shame.
Thank you for that "almost," Eric. I hope we at PARTERRE BOX are not
*quite* so enamored of the cheap shot as Ms. Hoelterhoff seems to be.
Frankly, I find her gratuitous snipes at Pavarotti for his advanced age
and poor health both poor taste and poor journalism. She does, however,
capture the spirit and style of Herbert Breslin accurately and
entertainingly -- a pity, then, that the author cannot resist embellishing
her tale with the obvious fiction that she dozed off during Breslin's
bravura (and very perceptive) tirade on the music business.
My sources tell me that the NEW YORKER excerpt is one of the *milder*
sections of Hoelterhoff's book, so I suppose we can look forward to an
entertaining, if sometimes exasperating, read.
> While in Seattle, I heard Speight Jenkins say that a recording with
> Eaglen and Heppner is unlikely since both have exclusive contracts
> with different companies.
> This made me angry because its also the reason why we don't have a
> Nilsson and Vickers recording of T and I.
It strikes me that Mr. Jenkins oversimplified this issue a bit.
Neither Nilsson nor Vickers was "exclusive" to any recording company.
Birgit Nilsson was on the verge of retiring her Isolde when Vickers
first took up Tristan; by the time the tenor went into the studio, the
soprano already had two commercial recordings of TRISTAN in release.
I suppose there is some chance that Vickers *might* have learned Tristan
especially for the Decca/Solti version, but as I recall that recording
was done on a very short lead time per Nilsson's demands. And, as I recall,
Solti and Vickers never got along particularly well anyway.
Ms. Eaglen was announced for a Sony recording opposite Placido
Domingo a couple of years ago (I'll believe that when I see it), and
Mr. Heppner (one hears) is contracted for at least *two* recordings
of the Wagner, not including the aborted Decca/Solti. Are these
artists truly "exclusive," or has it simply just not worked out that
they happen to have been cast together -- yet? (Surely it is not
unbelievable that they might team in the studio with James Levine
sometime between now and next year when these three perform TRISTAN in
parterre box d/b/a james jorden
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