➊ Tutus And Tuttis Similarities

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Camilo - Tutu - con Evaluna Montaner

Rwanda is our Hutu land. We are the majority. They are a minority of traitors and invaders. We will squash the infestation. Upon revenge, the Hutus massacred many Tutsis and other Hutus that supported the Tutsis. This gruesome war lasted for a days. Up to this date, there have been many devastating effects on Rwanda and the global community. In addition, many people have not had many acknowledgements for the genocide but from this genocide many lessons. We are all human, and to be human means different things to different people. I believe that this film showed both sides of the human condition, one being a genuinely. In , Hotel Rwanda was released and it baffled many westerns when they realized how little help they provided. It also caused an emotional response because it was noted how much could have changed if they had stepped in.

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However, that in itself is what makes his music so interesting and unique. The vocal line in the two pieces on this disc is minimal but crucial to the story, especially in El amor brujo Love, the Magician. Her dark, yet unmistakably feminine voice comes from the depths of a bottomless well to, at once, become all four characters in the story. The music too is intoxicating, with several very definite Andalusian folk themes woven in. El sombrero de tres picos The Three-Cornered Hat is a much lighter work: the stereotypical corrupt government official trying to take advantage of the simple people, but the plan backfires. The name of the piece derives from the three cornered hat that the Corregidor magistrate wears to signify his position. Considered to be one of the finest moments of the opera, it takes place during a wedding celebration.

A music video is perhaps the last place to expect an opera singer. Would you invite a guest to your 60th-birthday party if you were worried that they might upstage you? Nor me. Where would so many choirs of Britain and America be without his eminently singable music? What would happen to the classical record industry without his seemingly unshakeable commercial appeal?

Lincoln Center can rightfully claim to practice truth in advertising. Classical music in America, we are frequently told, is in its death throes: its orchestras bled dry by expensive guest soloists and greedy musicians unions, its media presence shrinking, its prestige diminished, its educational role ignored, its big record labels dying out or merging into faceless corporate entities. We seem to have too many well-trained musicians in need of work, too many good composers going without commissions, too many concerts to offer an already satiated public. Click here for remainder of article.

Zimperlich war der umstrittene spanische Regisseur nie. Sir Isaiah Berlin deemed Verdi the last of the great "naive" composers: simple, un-self-conscious, concealed by his work. There is truth to Sir Isaiah's claim, but it withers before the bittersweet fancy of "Falstaff" , crafted by the year-old Verdi as his farewell to the stage. His recordings with EMI include both studio recordings and live performances, and this CD represents him well through the depth and variety of repertoire it contains. Of the two CDs in this set, the first CD is devoted primarily Italian and French composers, with the focus mainly on opera, while the second has mostly German composers, with many of the selections being Lieder.

There are some exceptions on both CDs, with some songs by Rossini augmenting the Italian repertoire on the first one; similarly, some songs by American composers like Griffes and Foster round out the Lieder on the second. The latter is an excerpt from the recording of the less familiar version of Das Lied that involves two male singers tenor and baritone , which Hampson made with Peter Seiffert and conducted by Simon Rattle.

Yet it would have been convenient to have the texts and translations of the works included. A discography would be of some assistance for this retrospective CD set and others like it, rather than the selective listings of recordings that were apparently made with EMI alone. These are minor quibbles, however, and should by no means suggest any reservations about this fine collection. The fairy tale aspect of the ballet helped to make it a resounding success all over Europe in the nineteenth century.

This infatuation spread throughout France: newspapers began calling themselves La Sylphide , words such as sylphide and taglioniser were added to the French language, and fashions saw diaphanous blouses and turbans sylphide. Set in Scotland, the story recounts the love of a mortal for a supernatural creature. James prepares for his marriage to Effie, a peasant girl. Secretly, though, his thoughts are possessed by a nocturnal vision of the beautiful Sylph. When the Sylph appears to him in real life, he follows her into the aerial realm inhabited by winged beings.

His love for her is doomed, however, as the Sylph is no more than a frail and faint ghost, and the evil spells of the witch Madge eventually transform James into a hapless assassin. The performance is rich and colorful, with numerous individual and group dance performances, lavish costumes, and spectacular scenery. Various levels of staging allow many of the dancers to observe and fly through the scenery throughout Act 2, when the drama takes place in the fairy realm. All the performers, including the witch, are magnificent in this recreation of one of the important ballets of the Romantic period.

The group performed all surviving sacred cantatas of J. Bach in the course of one year, traveling to a variety of churches in Europe beginning in Weimar, and culminating in three Christmastime concerts at St. For the most part, each performance featured cantatas written by Bach for the particular liturgical feast day on which the concert was presented. All the concerts were recorded live, this set containing the programs of September 28 and October 7, , the fifteenth and sixteenth Sundays after Trinity, at the churches Unser Lieben Frauen in Bremen and Santo Domingo de Bonaval in Santiago de Compostela, respectively. Given that the group had been traveling, rehearsing, and peforming a different handful of cantatas week after week for nine months, one would think the members would have run out of steam when these concerts took place.

Far from it, the performances are fresh, energetic, sensitive, and suffused with the spirit of Bach at its finest. BWV The same forces are employed in the third movement, which follows a bass recitative and is itself followed by solo movements for tenor, bass, and alto. Next we get another chorale-prelude setting, but with the soloist instead of a chorus singing the chorale melody. There is no intermediate text, therefore no recitatives. Nevertheless, in most of the music to which Bach set these words is not as happy and joyful as one might expect, given those—one might say lugubrious—texts.

If this set is indicative of what is to come, Bach cantata fans should start saving now to purchase all of them. Note a possible confusion: four CDs of cantatas from the Pilgrimage were issued on the Archiv label by Deutsche Grammophon, which then backed out of the project. Sir John then established his own label, Moteverdi Productions, to continue the set, picking up from where DG left off. The Leonhardt-Harnoncourt recordings were in many ways pioneering, nurturing the aesthetic appeal of period performance, establishing its commercial viability, and helping to define stylistic idioms.

In Ton Koopman inaugurated a new cantata project that would combine public concert performances with a new complete recording series for Erato. If Leonhardt and Harnoncourt can be seen as establishing a new sense of historical style in their series, Koopman may be seen as celebrating the fluency of historical style in his. Rhetorical inflection and dramatic dynamism are characteristic, though always in tension with a sense of decorum. The vocal sound favors a forward placement and a controlled vibrancy; rapid passage work is accomplished with seeming ease and impressive glottal articulation.

And, though much of the expression is rooted in the gestural details, singers and instrumentalists alike render the details with a naturalness that allows them easily to integrate with the larger units of phrase. In contrast to a number of modern Bach interpreters who favor one-to-a-part choral forces, Koopman employs multiple singers in choral tuttis, reserving one-to-a-part textures for concertino passages. The tutti ensemble maintains throughout, however, a remarkable clarity of execution.

For the large part of his first two years in Leipzig, Bach composed, rehearsed, and performed a new cantata weekly. This pace carried on at such length is impressive, to say the least, but it also might lead us to expect that in an output so large, the quality could not possibly be maintained at a consistently high level. Both are large-scale works in two parts—Bach trying to impress his new employer with his fortitude? Thus the selected works document not only the remarkable inventiveness of Bach and his allegiance to the excellence of his work, but also his wide expressive range.

Volume Six also satisfies in a pedagogical way in which we can hear and ponder various scholarly attempts to deal with historical anomalies. My criticisms of the volume are few, and chiefly lie outside the recordings themselves. A closer English translation would be beneficial. And to these infelicities, one might also add typographical errors in the program booklet that a fuller copy-editing might have caught. Without question, the cantatas of J. Bach must loom large in our understanding and appreciation of the composer. Equally without question, Ton Koopman and the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra and Choir have given us renditions that gratify and inform in great measure, indeed. The Complete Cantatas, vol.

Ton Koopman, conductor. Rudolf Berger has declared that he will be leaving his post as director of the Wiener Volksoper before his term expires. Der Standard looks at the troubled company — its second-class status, its search for an identity, its management problems — along with an interview of the departing Berger. Bach's cantatas open a window onto the intensity of early 18th-century Lutheran piety. The text of No begins with the image of a heart swimming in blood, then dwells on the anguished guilt of the sinner before he is reconciled to God in the joyful final aria. The seasoned Mahler conductor Bernard Haitink gives this performance the shape that it requires. Yet the freshness and spontaneity he brings to some of the tempo changes and transitional passages enhances the sense of continuity that Haitink brings to the work.

This is particularly apparent in the Scherzo, which needs thoughtful conducting to make it function organically, rather than give the impression of a number of ideas strung together. Clarity is the hallmark of this movement, and some of the details found in this recording are not present in others. While some conductors maintain the line as the motives move through the orchestra, Haitink goes further, to bring out the accompanying lines that are essential to the textures Mahler intended for the work. Mahler had discussed the primacy of counterpoint around the time he composed this Symphony, and this recording confirms his consciousness of that musical element.

Likewise, the clarity of orchestration that Mahler wanted to include in the score emerges in this performance. The brass have a burnished color that fits well with the rest of the ensemble, and they do not dominate the movement. The listener gets a sense that they have the capacity to intensify the sound and that the conductor is reserving that ability for those places that absolutely require it. As a result, the details emerge in this performance are not always evident in others. Haitink has met the challenge of this movement very well, and each movement of this Symphony bears the stamp of his insightful conducting. The Adagietto that follows is a character piece in comparison to the Scherzo. Not only is the Adagietto much shorter in duration, but the scoring is for a smaller number of instruments, strings and harp only, in contrast to the full orchestra that is part of the Scherzo that precedes it.

Haitink performs the Adagietto at a thoughtful pace, placing it among the longer interpretations of the score. Yet his tempos allow him to bring out the intensity of the strings of the Orchestra National de France, an aspect of their ensemble that other conductors do not always achieve so well. For him, this movement is a song without words for the orchestra, and the slower tempos create a sense of timelessness that fits the text of the song that serves as its basis. By giving the thematic passages this slant, Haitink makes it easier for the listener to recall the music when Mahler dissolves those ideas into fragments later in the movement. Likewise, when Mahler reprises the chorale from the second movement, Haitink recalls the intensity that he had given its first occurrence.

In fact, Haitink has given the first two movements a somber, imposing, character that allows the finale movement, the Rondo-Finale, with its well-paced tempos and clear form, to serve well as a foil for the earlier ones. Again, it is the details that set this recording apart from others, since Haitink creates textures that are faithful to the score. Nowhere does a solo part or solo section overbalance the orchestra, which maintains its ensemble throughout. This approach is at once sensible and definitely satisfying. While some performances that make use of breathtaking, this recording presents a more measured interpretation of the score. Audience sounds are imperceptible until the end, when the extended applause responds appropriately to the work. The audience clearly appreciated the performance and responded accordingly.

By Justin Davidson [Newsday, 27 September ]. An assortment of 19th century European nobility sequestered in a sumptuous hotel: What could be the setup for a murder mystery or a reality show serves equally well for a comic opera, Rossini's "Il Viaggio a Reims. Instead, they while away a couple of acts in vocal arabesques. Since , when she first sang the title role of Richard Strauss's "Ariadne auf Naxos" at the Metropolitan Opera, the soprano Deborah Voigt has pretty much owned the role at the house.

But Ms. Voigt has other challenges on the horizon now. So the company brought back its alluring Elijah Moshinsky production of this Strauss favorite on Saturday afternoon with the Lithuanian soprano Violeta Urmana. Beginning in the late nineteenth century, serious writers such as Sholem Aleichem, Chaim Nachman Bialik, and Mendele Moicher Sforim produced poetry, stories, and novels in Yiddish that captured the imagination of Jews worldwide. At the same time, Jews became conscious of a repertoire of songs and melodies--old ones passed down from earlier generations and new ones that sprang up--in Yiddish, as well as sacred music in Hebrew. Collections of such music were published, beginning in the early twentieth century and continuing till today.

For this recording, the artists have chosen 36 items that date primarily from the first half of the twentieth century, some for solo piano, most for voice and piano. The singer featured on this CD is the American-born and -educated mezzo-soprano Helene Schneidermann, who has been with the Stuttgart State Opera for more than twenty years. Her rich mezzo voice is excellent for the more serious works on the recording, but Schneidermann also gives a spirited and light-hearted rendering when it is called for.

Son of the cantor and composer Baruch Leib Rosowsky, Solomon was a composer, musicologist, collector and editor of Jewish music, music critic, teacher, and author of The Cantillation of the Bible: The Five Books of Moses. Born and educated in Russia, Nemtsov graduated with distinction from the Leningrad Conservatory in , and six years later moved to Stuttgart, Germany, where he still lives. His sensitive playing of the solo works and the relatively simple accompaniments suits the music very well. Like Rosovsky, Krejn was born into a musical family. His father was a klezmer musician who played violin at Jewish weddings, and his six brothers all became musicians.

Kreijn achieved his greatet success as a composer for the Yiddish theater in Russia during the s. The Opus 50 dances are drawn from some of his theater works. After Jewish music was banned in the Soviet Union, Kreijn wrote works unrelated to his career up till then. The best-known of the composers on this CD is Lazare Saminsky, who is represented by four works at the beginning and three at the end of the recording.

If anyone can be called the Grand Old Man of New Jewish Music, it is Saminsky whose dates, , are erroneously given as ! It is appropriately prayer-like, featuring simple harmonies played mostly in chords in the piano. It sticks close to the tonic, like Torah chanting, and features flourishes at ends of some of the sentences. The Hebrew pronunciation as well as the transliteration in the booklet are inconsistent and, in some places, simply wrong. Nevertheless, starting off the recital with a prayerful Bible passage sets a good tone for what is to come. The first release includes the cycles Liederkreis, op. Bauer has an engaging sound, and his command of the text is unquestionably solid. Working together, Bauer and Hielscher achieve a remarkably fine balance and convincing interpretation of these two major sets of Lieder.

As familiar as the music may be, their approach conveys a freshness often found in live performances that is sometimes difficult to capture on a recording. At the same time, he allows some lines to linger just enough to reinforce the meaning. His tone rings, at times, like a warm cello, and this adds to the ambiance of the performance. Her playing reflects a sensitivity that is often extolled, but not always heard. It is welcome here, where the accompanist and the vocalist must unite to present the Lieder as a kind of chamber music. At some points, the accompaniment requires a full sound that must not overpower the singer, and Hielscher is clearly sensitive to such moments in the score.

The opening song of the Dichterliebe is particularly effective with its tentative, somewhat hovering sense of rhythm that solidifies once the voice enters. Upon entering, Bauer conveys a musing, dreaming quality, which sets the tone for the cycle. Such definition is evident in the subsequent song and those that follow, and Hielscher confirms that in her approach to the accompaniment, which is prominent without being intrusive. From the pacing given to this and the remaining pieces in the cycle, it is clear that Bauer and Hielscher worked out their interpretation of this familiar music, and it is a convincing one.

In these more sustained Lieder, Bauer offers a laudable presentation of the text with his clear diction and sensitivity to both the rhythms of the music and those of the poetry. Already the second volume of the series is announced, and it includes selections from Liebesfruhling , op. While it is not entirely essential when the focus should be on the fine performance, the liner notes are minimal, with the entire insert typeset on two pages. Since this is well-known repertoire by Schumann, it should not be a problem to find texts elsewhere, either by consulting editions of the music or other CDs.

Naxos makes texts and translations available at the following URL: www. This is a small concession that should be no means detract from the fine performance found on this recording. Schumann Lieder 1 series. Bauer, baritone; Uta Hielscher, piano. Despite the technique's strict rigidity, the sustaining of a single triad throughout the work, the works on this recording represent great variety. The sound is hollow and stark with wide voicings and slow moving tempo and harmonic motion. This joyous setting is Russian in style with a thick but bright harmonic texture. The harmonic progressions are rich and sonorous and even include occasional, vague melodic ideas in the soprano.

As a compilation, this disc includes three choirs all led by Paul Hillier. There is also variety in the performances because of the nature of the choirs. The Estonian Chamber Choir has quickly risen in the public eye as one of the leading European Choirs. Their singing is robust yet clean, virtuosic yet subtle, and extremely passionate. The Theater of Voices, Hillier's regular ensemble, carries the bulk of the CD with beautiful clarity. A smaller group, their sound is quite refined and clear with precise intonation and uniformity across all parts. Joining them on three tracks is the Pro Arte Singers, bulking their numbers, but maintaining the exquisite sound. But it is the music and the performance that sets this recording apart from many contemporary choral releases.

The text is a new translation by Chana and Ariel Bloch. In their notes to the work, they remark how exceptional the text is in a Biblical context, principally by its erotic nature, a compelling evocation of love at times quite physical. New ideas are introduced sparingly, and one has the impression of material reused and reworked so as to create an immediate sense of familiarity. This is the hallmark of craft: unobtrusive and yet substantial, fresh but not grating or intrusive.

The use of the various ensembles also resembles Noces : their juxtaposition, pleasantly surprising and subtle at times, adds to the spontaneity of the narrative. The soprano Elissa Johnston does fine work as the Shulamite; her lover, the tenor Charles Bland, is a little overshadowed by both her voice and the voluptuousness of her role. Bridge Records, like Lovely Music reviewed elsewhere on this site , has been around long enough to establish a reputation at the capable hands of Becky and David Starobin. Bridge and Lovely stand at the forefront of a host of small labels that give the term independent label an authentic and reputable meaning. Their website is www.

The presence of funding from the Alice M. Ditson fund should be noted here: Ms. Were the world peopled with a few more patron like Alice Ditson, new music and good musicology would be in a much better state than it is today. The recording would make a wonderful gift to someone inclined toward good vocal music or with an interest in Biblical literature. The dissonant nature of the work, like everything else about it, is held in firm hand, and thus someone who is not an amateur of new music will find it agreeable none the less. Highly recomended. JULY 16, The gadget, as the scientists are calling it, has been hoisted up its tower.

Leslie Groves, the Army commander of the Manhattan Project, is beating up on the weatherman. Thunderheads have materialized from nowhere, threatening to set off the blast too soon. I warn you, if you are wrong, I will hang you. The test in question - code name, Trinity - is the detonation of the first atomic bomb. And no one knows how it will go: the atmosphere itself could catch fire, scorching the planet, singeing the blue from the sky. Productions of Hindemith's Cardillac since the composer's death in can probably be counted on one hand. Even the substantial revision of the score carried out in the s failed to cement its place in the repertory. Now the Paris Opera is trying to rehabilitate it, and, while the new production is not a total triumph, it would be hard today to make a better case for Cardillac than this.

The mighty Met inaugurated its season last Monday with the usual brouhaha, conspicuous social consumption and some operatic vaudeville, writes Martin Bernheimer. She needed only a few notes to show she has a big future. When it comes to operatic icons, Bizet's Carmen is in a class by herself. She has strong competition from leading ladies of the other operas that perennially top audience's Most Favorite lists -- Mimi in Puccini's "La boheme'' and two of Verdi's most memorable creations: Violetta of "La traviata'' and Aida. This being opera, they all wind up as corpses. And Rossini gilded this lily with a vengeance.

An occasional piece written to celebrate the coronation of Charles X of France in , "Il Viaggio" impractically called for 10 or 12 soloists. It is a long and almost plotless excuse for one musical set piece, one star turn, after another. Verdi's rich "Falstaff" pours out ideas in a fast-moving stream of glinting music. In James Levine's hands at the Metropolitan Opera on Friday evening, the score emerged from the first notes as burnished, full-bodied and warm as the title character himself. Then Dr. Caius Peter Bronder in his Met debut took the stage and began singing in a strong, firm tenor.

When such a small part is so well cast, you are in for an unusual evening; the attention to detail that characterized this performance has become, unfortunately, unusual. Over the weekend, the Metropolitan Opera presented two great operas, to magnificent effect. On Friday night, it was Verdi's "Falstaff. It's hard to imagine that this team could ever be outdone. Until now, however, the work of this important company has not been featured on a commercially produced recording. Now that the precedent has been set for audio recording, perhaps some of their cutting edge productions can be recorded for DVD release as well.

Featuring a play-within-a-play that recalls the one in Hamlet — here, too, the consciences of the characters watching the play are troubled by it — and a delicious twist at the end, the work is memorably set in a decaying manor house in the West Country during a long dark winter. For the most part, the libretto could be produced successfully as a highly atmospheric and gripping play. From his interest in jazz to his pursuit of the avant-garde at Darmstadt, Bennett has always been a composer and performer with a versatile range. But it is his experience with film scoring that perhaps served him best here. The duet at the end of the original act 1 — more about the act divisions in a moment — for Rosalind mezzo and Jenny soprano is a wonderful, haunting, and prescient scene for the two women, and it is masterful writing for the voice as well as exemplary text setting.

It invites good singing-acting. In this performance, the work for the most part gets the singing-acting it deserves. This recording was drawn from live performances, so we must remember that what works in the theater does not always transfer with equal success to a recording: we are only getting one dimension of the performance. Bennett had to decide between musical and literal expressivity, and the former won. However, with the use of supertitles at the NYCO, everyone should get both effects. James Maddelena is tremendous as always; he could give diction lessons to about anyone singing in English today, and he executes that diction with a baritone voice of sustained and notable beauty. Brandon Jovanovich uses his powerful tenor voice well, and Kristopher Irmiter is convincing as Braxton, the landowner killed early in act 1, and the actor-manager of the acting troupe.

The doubling of these two roles is required by the script, and it may tell us something about the strange appearance and disappearance of the actors. Are they even real? Finally, I must mention Michael Todd Simpson, who has several extended scenes as Tooley, one of the actors. He unfortunately will not be repeating the role at the NYCO. But I doubt if he is better. With the permission of Bennett, the three act opera is presented in two acts. The division between acts 1 and 2 bothered me. It seemed ill advised to interrupt the play-within-the-play.

But doing away with the original break between acts 2 and 3 is a decided improvement, so I guess it works out even. And makes for a somewhat shorter evening, although the work is not particularly long. If at times the orchestra verges on overpowering the singers, we must remember that this is taken from live performances; it is not ever a threat to the singers. Bennett should be grateful his work is in such gifted hands. The recorded sound is outstanding, thanks to producer Blanton Alspaugh and sound engineer John Newton.

The two CD set comes attractively packaged with substantial notes by the conductor. Anyone able to see the work in New York should make a point of doing so. It is richly theatrical and, like all opera, is meant to be experienced in the theater. With many in this cast repeating their performances, it should be a memorable evening. For those unable to make it to Lincoln Center, however, this is an important recording of an opera that deserves a wider audience. Libretto by Beverly Cross. Glimmerglass Opera Orchestra conducted by Stewart Robertson. The opera, known to most Western listeners primarily through its showpiece overture, is one of the most brilliant creations of 19th-century Russian music.

In five acts with a prolog, it is enormous and difficult, requiring high virtuosity from both singers and instrumentalists; the score also presents a host of problems for stage directors as it defies all attempts at realistic staging. Meanwhile, conductors face numerous textological conundrums caused by the divergences in the existing sources and the lack of an authorial manuscript, believed to have perished in a fire.

Fans of the opera should not expect major revelations, however: while there are several discrepancies in pitch and rhythm throughout the score, the sequence and content of the material is essentially intact. Indeed, if some music on this recording proves unrecognizable, it is the unfortunate consequence of the performance quality of the new production. To start with the singers, the ladies generally did better than the men. Maria Gavrilova is a lovely Gorislava; she is by far the best singer in the lineup, which makes one wish that the composer had given her more than a cameo role. Ekaterina Morozova as Lyudmila is more disappointing: her coloratura is clean and precise, but is suitable more for the Queen of the Night her signature part than for a warm-blooded Russian princess; this is particularly noticeable in her Act 4 aria.

Indeed, several singers on the recording seem to have sacrificed both richness of timbre and richness of interpretation to the goal of precisely rendering the notes of the carefully restored score. The introduction and finale — scenes that require more volume than precision — are less affected by this, but the quality is disastrous, for instance, in the Act 2 scene of Ruslan with the giant Head — the character represented by the unison male choir that must be perfectly in sync to achieve the desired effect. The tempo of the brilliant overture is sluggish at best, and even in that tempo the musicians are struggling. The rest of us may be better off staying faithful to the Mariinsky recording, or even the vintage Bolshoi production with Nesterenko, which Melodiya recently re-released on CD.

After all, as the conductor tells us, this work is first and foremost a musical masterpiece; it should be approached as such. The librettist, Angelo Anelli loosely based his drama on the legend of Roxelana, a young Russian girl who in was captured into slavery by the Turks, and who later, through her guile and intrigue married the Sultan, Suleiman the Magnificent. There is another legend involving a young Italian noblewoman who was captured and sent to a harem in Algiers. The young woman was later set free and returned to Italy to, no less, sing the role of Isabella! His basso voice is well suited for this role, as is his perfect timing and comic mastery. Her crystal clear soprano shines in the Quintetto of Act 1.

Baritone Marcello Cortis delivers a fine performance as the quintessential pompous and elderly suitor, Taddeo; however of all the principals, his is the least interesting rendition. Of special notice is Cesare Valetti, a key participant in this recording. There is no need for Valetti to worry over other younger singers of today in this role. A great Dalila, Amneris, Mignon, Carmen and Azucena among others, Simionato is perfectly at ease in lighter roles, having successfully sung a number of comedies before taking on the role of Isabella. Che muso, che figura! Her high notes are never forced, and her chest notes are natural.

The music and story are fast paced, providing the audience with one musical situation after the next, and Giulini conducts with restraint and attention to detail—thus the nuances in the score are never lost or overshadowed by unnecessary embellishments or loudness. The cast and orchestra are superb in the handling of this situation, capturing the Rossinian genius with an engaging verve, yet never overpowering one another. Simionato and C. Or making love in a cactus patch. Andrew O'Hagan on why opera is not the kind of drama he can believe in when set in a modern context. The heart lifts whenever the great opera houses try their hands at something modern.

But why does it lift? Why are we so married to the notion that the arts must go forward? We are always scampering after something new and progressive, perhaps to feel refreshed, perhaps to see our own time's reflection, but the classic operas require no updating. It was the 1,th performance of the work in the Met's history. It is as if the season hasn't really begun until the consumptive lady sings. Only in classical music would the alleged death of a genre be used to hype it. Lacking the bold thematic statements characteristic of his other works, the Thirteenth , both in music and text, is riddled with subtleties and innuendos designed to expose the musical oppression posed by the Soviet regime through a series of cleverly disguised understatements.

If well-executed, a thoughtful interpretation would reveal the heart of what Shostakovich so desperately needed to express. Shostakovich chose a collection of poems by Yevgeny Yevtushenko as the text. Originally, the poem described the death and suffering of Ukrainian Jews by the hands of the Nazi Fascists. However, pressure from the government necessitated revisions that glorified the role of the Soviets in defeating the Nazi threat.

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