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Subject: Povero Verdi!!
From: Charles Handelman <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Charles Handelman <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Sun, 27 Dec 1998 13:32:57 -0500
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                          I understand that Catherine Malfitano,one of our
finest singing actresses,is going to be performing three works at the Met
next season:Lady Macbeth of Mzensk,Mahagonny, and Makropolous Case.  We are
therefore guaranteed three fine endeavors by this excellent artist, and if
we look at this season's repertory and casts,we can pretty much bet that
the Caesars,Pique Dames,Susannahs,Moses and Aarons, Katya
Kabanovas,Khovanshchinas, and
Wozzecks will be reasonably successful.
                 So,Charlie, what's yer pernt???????

  My "pernt" is one I have raised a few(G) times in the past,and that is
the FACT (FACT..FACT..read my lips) that there are virtually no decent
Verdi casts (world-wide) these days. This is why Dolora Zajick sticks out
like twelve sore thumbs,because she is a rare throwback to the kind of
powerful "force of nature" singing that used to inhabit the opera stages of
the world. Gone are the Aidas,the Trovatores, the Forzas, the Ballos (not
to mention the Giocondas, Cheniers, and Cavallerias) with the kind of
singers who made the flesh CRAWL. Yet, there are still those who would
constantly "dig' at those of us,young and old,who recognize the fact that
the average so-called "Verdi" singer is really far removed from what opera
houses have presented up until about the last 20 years.
         Therefore,the Aidas with Rita Orlandi, Gianfranco Cecchele,
Anselmo Colzani, and Bianca Berini are pretty much a thing of the past.
(Oh,you thought I was going to give you Stella,Tucker,MacNeil,and
Simionato???) Now we have singers who might do wonderful Marcellos,
terrific Elsas, superb Octavians and...and..(well,I am trying to think of
tenor roles for some of the present"dramatic tenors.").
             I am not telling the readers to stop attending
Aidas,Trovatores,Ballos,etc. because these are beautiful works, and
besides, where would an opera house be financially with no Verdi? However,
I wish that attitudes might change in schools of singing or wherever the
students are finding their voices, because it is inconceivable that there
suddenly could not be a future Corelli or Stella or Cossotto,or Warren.
    Yes, the usual lovable forum members will continue to object that some
of us (again,I repeat,REGARDLESS of age) see some slight differences
between Carol Vaness and Zinka Milanov, Vladimir Chernov and Robert
Merrill, Michael Sylvester and Mario del Monaco, and why is Dolora Zajick
all alone? We once boasted of
Barbieri,Simionato,Cossotto,Resnik,Gorr,Verrett,and the "lighter" but still
fine Bumbry,Troyanos,Thebom,etc. but now we have all those miscast Russians
doing Verdi,and they are not bringing the house down...well,not if my
"buddies" have anything to say.
       GO to the opera!! That is what I am again doing..and i have a ticket
to my favorite opera, Aida,for Apr.19.The cast is made up of Sharon
Sweet,Olga Borodina,Dennis O'Neill,and Greg Baker. Would I rather see Herva
Nelli,Kurt Baum, Bizerka Cvejic, and Frank Valentino? Hmmmmmmm. Let me
think about it!     As ever Charlie

P.S. JUST DISCOVERED Larissa Diadakova and Anna Netrebko in Video Russlan
and Ludmilla!!! GORGEOUS VOICES!!!!!!!

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