La Cieca proposes a new weekly competition: she provides the theme, you provide the examples. This week: “Now, that’s how it’s done!”
The concept is: if you want to know how an aria or operatic scene should be performed, look no further. Your task is to find and to properly embed a YouTube video exemplifying some operatic superlative, then append a few sentences explaining why your choice is indeed the best of the best.
La Cieca will now offer an example.
Everything about this Renata Tebaldi clip if pretty fabulous including (especially) the hair, but what really is “how it’s done” here is the expert and fearless use of chest voice. Especially impressive is the soprano’s deliberate contrast of timbre between the hard, snarling chest tone and the limpid mezza voce in the middle register. Some Giocondas are good at expressing rage, others vulnerability, but Tebaldi can modulate between the two almost instantaneously without sacrificing the quality of the voice.
So, go look for a YouTube clip of your favorite “Now, that’s how it’s done!” moment, and post it in the comments section for this posting, along with your commentary, by midnight on Sunday, June 20. The clip and comment La Cieca judges the best (and her whim is final) will receive a copy of the newly-released DVD The Metropolitan Opera Gala 1991: 25th Anniversary at Lincoln Center, documenting this performance. (If the winner resides outside the United States, La Cieca reserves the right to substitute an amazon.com gift certificate of equivalent value.)
So, show La Cieca how it’s done!