Cher Public

Thank you for your patience!

Cher public, the issues that have been plaguing over the past week escalated tonight until the site crashed. It’s back up with limited features now, and we hope to be restored 100% by early Friday. Bless you all!

  • Clita del Toro

  • Camille

    When speaking of Busby Berkeley, as you fellows just now have, one must not leave out one of his SUPREME achievements, “By a Waterfall”, which is just plain stupefying:

    • Clita del Toro

      Cammie, it’s divine!

      • perfidia

        I will always have a soft spot for this:

        • Camille

          Glorious. Thank you.

          Can anyone identify the other fruit in this film? I used to think it was a large strawberry but now I’m thinking it is a persimmon, or could it be a mango?

        • oedipe

          La réponse du berger à la bergère:

        • WindyCityOperaman

          I’m sure all you Carmen fans have already seen it, but take a gander at the documentary “Bannanas is My Business”- it’s on You Tube in parts. In it you find out that the lady’s life wasn’t all that happy . . .

  • Clita del Toro

    By a swimming pool:

    • Camille

      But Clita, where is JOAN??????

      She’ll work herself up into a towering diva rage if you do not accord her the rightful diva respect dues!

      • Sheldon

        Camille--Here she is!

        • Camille

          Yes, before those eyebrows took over her, she was so sweet, and what a pair of gams! My favourite movie is that one from about 1933 with Gable, can’t remember its name, but it is wonderful. That and Grand Hotel. Wunderbar.

  • manou

    In the unlikely event that the site crashes again, we should all repair to the panic room, otherwise known as

    and huddle together in close proximity whilst the techies do their magic.

    It is useful to bookmark the chat link so that it can be accessed without going through the main site.

    Bring sandwiches and hot drinks.

    • manou

      …Hell -- bring Dom Pérignon and caviar.

      • Camille

        Thank you very much, madame manou. I shall bring my flask of cognac.

  • LittleMasterMiles

    Apologies if this has already been posted around here someplace, but I thought the parterriani would want to know that according to one source some major cast changes have been announced for the Met’s Gotterdammerung matinne/broadcast/hd:

  • grimoaldo

    “I Due Foscari, it is the first instance of Verdi repeating a theme, rather like a leitmotiv, but not exactly. The theme for the tenor, I believe at the second act beginning. It doesn’t happen often in Verdi and this was the first time he did so. The book in which I read this is no longer around the house, so I cannot quote chapter and verse at the moment for which I am sorry.”

    Yes dear Camille there are repeated melodic themes associated with the heroine Lucrezia heard first in the wonderful prelude and repeated throughout the piece:

    and themes associated with the tenor, as you say, his father the Doge and the threatening junta, the council of ten.
    Anybody who wants to can watch the whole opera with Bruson and notice the themes as they appear:


    • Camille

      grimmy! Your programme will be in the mail tomorrow!

      • grimoaldo

        Oh thank you Camille, that is so sweet, I appreciate it!

  • Camille

    I further recall now why I remember Lori Guilbeau, who made her debut last night as the Sacerdotessa; if I am not terribly mistaken, it was she who sang “Toi, qui sus le neant” from Don Carlo(s)(!), in the auditions heard in 2010. She made a big impression on my ear at that time. I hope she has someone wise to counsel and guide her. Good luck and in bocca al lupo, for I think she is very talented.

    Looking at a Met flyer lodged in an ancient crumbling score of Aida I found in a corner last night, I saw an Aida from late 1999: the Sacerdotessa was Sondra Radvanosky.

  • grimoaldo

    “Oh please. Are you seriously going to stick up for Oberto”

    Yep. It’s terrific.

    “or the extremely not-funny “comedy” Un giorno di regno”

    Yes again, it’s totally delightful, saw a lovely concert performance of it at Covent Garden.

    “or La battaglia di Legnano”

    totally fabulous, love every note, gimme more more more, could listen to it every day for the rest of my life, saw a great concert performance of it with the Royal Opera with guess who, yes Mr Calm Sunday himself, back in his tenor days

    “or *shudder* Alzira?”
    Well that one Verdi said himself was “propria brutta” but I enjoyed it on the recordings, never saw it live though and that does make a difference.

    “When I started out, I got every Verdi opera on CD (all those Phillips recordings), I’ve heard ‘em all, to claim that some aren’t third rate, or I’ll be generous, second rate, is special pleading at best.”

    I have heard them all as well and make no apologies for loving every single note Verdi ever wrote with all my heart, all my mind and all my soul. I mean, call me crazy, but I think you ought to be able to be an opera fan on an opera site, and yes I am a Verdi fan (adorer?)
    If you want to say that some of his works are second-rate, ok I would not have quarreled with that but “third-rate”? -- giammai!

    • grimoaldo

      oops that was supposed to be a reply to hh on quite another page

    • Henry Holland

      call me crazy

      Du bist verrückt!

      I think you ought to be able to be an opera fan on an opera site

      Who’s stopping you?

      If you want to say that some of his works are second-rate, ok I would not have quarreled with that but “third-rate”?

      Ah, so it’s a semantics thing. :-)

  • La Valkyrietta

    This is dedicated to all lovers of Verdi, and to all those that complained of a recent broadcast of Aida. Sublime.

    • Andie Musique

      Thanks for the Tebaldi posting. Just heard Ravanovsky’s Aida in Chicago and she was superb. Beautiful voice all of a piece, wonderful acting. Obviously the Lyric suits her.

  • Camille

    grimoaldo — Andre Breton said about Victor Hugo “He’s a surrealist when not being ludicrous”, or words to that effect. What teenage girl out there would NOT want three noble men in her bedroom late at night, all professing his undying love and fighting over her? The Congiura, all the raging jealous lovers, the double suicide at the end, which had me in tears--what’s NOT to love?

    I do wish you would be able to see and hear this new young tenor, De Biasio, instead of attending the HD, which you must do at the very least! He looked and acted the part in a way that I am sure is far more convincing than what Giordani will do.

    Now I must re-read JJ’s piece about the Ernani set, as after having seen it myself, I must say that it does WORK.

    It was a lovely evening altogether and one in which I relaxed, finally, as the singing was all consistently on a high level. Miss Meade sounds very differently in the house as opposed to over the air, and I was greatly relieved by hearing her live. Some of the wiggles in her voice over the radio seem to smooth out in the house, and her voice PROJECTS, unlike so many others’. She moved very creditably in the enormous gowns, and did her part very sympathetically. Nothing like some of the other large leading ladies I have seen in the nineties, who shall remain nameless, but you all know who I mean.

    Furlanetto made the best of his part = the best vecchio cornuto col corno, probably, I’ve yet seen. A far more congenial role than Filippo for him, from my point of view. And Dima did his best, which is good, but his voice does not have the weight or heft that truly defines a Verdi baritone, and that’s all there is to it. He did sing well, and acted the noble convincingly.

    For someone’s fifth outing as an opera composer, I must say that Ernani is quite a work. There are so many beautiful moments, full of youth and energy. All I can say is Viva Verdi!

    • bluecabochon

      Camille! I was there too, and agree 100% with your assessment. It was a fine evening of singing, even if the story and some of the action and subtitles provoke unintentional hilarity. DiBiasio sounded so fresh, as did Angela -- what a pleasure to hear young-sounding lovers. I thought she looked very good in her costumes. Listening on Sirius the other night, I thought that Furlanetto sounded wobbly, but he didn’t at all in the house tonight.

      Loved the spiral staircase!

    • parpignol

      I was there too, and thought it was a very nice night for Verdi, credit also to Armiliato; Hvorostovsky is unevenly suited to this part, not big enough for the big moments, but brilliant in the more delicately ironical second-act singing when he’s taking Elvira hostage, and very fine I thought in the third-act aria; Furlanetto and Meade received the biggest ovations; he’s simply a great Verdian for the ages; and she sounded mostly terrific, with some very accomplished pianissimo singing, and it’s clear that the Met is going to need her for lots of roles in the near future, so they better start letting out the costumes; De Biasio was good, and best of all when harmonizing with Meade, and there’s a lot of that in Ernani, so the matching of their voices was important; and one must say: with Armiliato, De Biasio, and Furlanetto, it did feel like an Italian evening with Verdi!

      • suzyQ

        I was at Ernani last night too and I really enjoyed Meade, Furlanetto, Hvorostovsky & De Biasio. I agree that the Met should use Meade for many future roles and hope that she gets some dramatic coaching. I was pleasantly surprised by De Biasio and wish that he was going to be in the HD performance.

  • La Valkyrietta

    Ernani mania, love it!

  • La Valkyrietta

    And here is what Wagner’s future father-in-law on Ernani.

    • Camille

      oh thank you, La Vally, I do really love all the Liszt transcriptions SO much!

      Here’s another one, Part I, it says:

      • La Valkyrietta


  • Bluessweet

    Not to beat dead horses but….

    A week or so ago, we had some carping about Meade’s voice and her accumulation of awards.

    Since then, we have had a new (and very generous) award and a triumph in Ernani at the MET. I hope to see her for the first time at the Ernani encore HD, so I still do not have an opinion (or dog, if you prefer to be folksy) in the vocal prowess fight, but “just sayin.”

    As for the other fight, that about monetary awards, let me repeat what I have said earlier and add an insight that I just received:

    It’s the awarders’ money and they can give it to the person(s) they feel deserving. While anyone might wish to offer their own “better” candidate and, certainly, there is always situational politics e.g. “We needed to award a tenor this time,” (although all the mezzos were much better singers,) the decision is really the awarders’ to make. Meade, having won many such awards, seems to have beaten the odds against those “political” decisions.

    Here’s the fresh insight, taken from an AVA grad who is a few years behind Meade but up and coming:

    “It’s amazing how sacred voice lessons become when they are no longer free.”

    To which statement the reply was (and not from me):

    “welcome to the “glamorous” life of being out of school.”

    This artist did say to me, “I really do appreciate the four years of free lessons at AVA,” so the comment is really about how much it costs young artists to keep up the struggle to make an entrée into an operatic career.

    You try flying to Europe travel all over the continent and feed an house yourself for a coupe of weeks just to audition for roles and positions with companies you probably have only a slim chance of winning on an immediate post school income.

    • bluecabochon

      What do you mean by free voice lessons? Don’t AVA students pay tuition?

      • MontyNostry

        As I understand it, all AVA tuition is free to the students. Fantastic, really -- and the place does turn out some fine young artists.

  • Bluessweet

    And this from February 6, and this time I’m giving you the name, since he IS an established star:

    Larry Brownlee

    “ Some might think it strange that Yesterday I made my Carnegie Hall debut. Today, on my way to Bloomington, IN to see my voice teacher for lessons, (gulp). Guess what…we never stop being students.”

    I’ve had the pleasure to meet many of the artists who do their best to entertain us and I have the utmost respect for what they do and how they do it. True, not all of them are always the best singers in the world but they all deserve our respect.

    • I would love to hear that Carnegie Hall recital. I finally got to hear him live in Houston in the Barber. A glorious voice to be sure. The look on his face said it all: IT”S WORKING!

  • Quanto Painy Fakor
    • Quanto Painy Fakor

      I hope this will lead to the long awaited MET debut of Giada de Laurentiis and Lucinda Scala Quinn singing “Mira Enorma”

  • Camille

    i can’t stand to listen to GD again, after Ernani. I am AWOL der verfluechter Reif.