Cher Public

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  • antikitschychick: Thanks Lohenfal :-) yeah I’m happy it worked out. I mean, it’s good that they revamped the website as I do... 2:22 PM
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  • Lohenfal: Anti, I’m glad to hear you were able to get the 4 tickets you wanted instead of waiting for the iffy student version.... 2:14 PM

Ugh! Neve!

La Cieca celebrates (if that is the word) the first snowfall of the season in New York in the traditional manner: with a video clip from La fanciulla del West.

In this production from the Royal Swedish Opera, we see Nina Stemme and Aleksandrs Antonenko in a production by Christof Loy.


  • Clita del Toro says:

    Met Ballo clips (sorry if this has been posted before).

    • grimoaldo says:

      I think that looks rather wonderful.

    • papopera says:

      WHAT’S HAPPENING WITH THE MET BROADCAST, its total silence since 20:30 and its now 20:45. Silent entr’acte or power failure ?? I”m waiting for Amelia.

      • armerjacquino says:

        Fine for me in the UK, using Firefox to stream from the Met website.

        For once, insomnia has its uses. I’m excited to hear Radvan in this part, and isn’t there an argument that this is Verdi’s best single act?

        Ecco l’orrido campo- Teco io sto- Odi tu come fremono cupi- V’e se di notte. That’s quite a half hour.

      • DonCarloFanatic says:

        My Met stream dropped out several times. I kept having to start it up again. But it was far better than recent Sirius live.

        Oh, lord, the audience is booing the production like crazy, and MaryJo Heath is ignoring the boos.

        • Bianca Castafiore says:

          Same here. I only caught bits here and there. Frustrating that the stream doesn’t ever seem to work smoothly. Sondra sounded harsh sometimes and I’m not a fan of that crazy vibrato. I thought I heard boos at the end… That was a scandale!

  • Bianca Castafiore says:

    The great Minnie of Matos at the Met:

    • Camille says:

      Thank you, Bianca. Good times.

      Do you happen to know—was this the debut performance or the subsequent one?

      She really was very convincing in the role and ’twas a pity she could not have sung at least half the performances, if not the HD. She seemed to galvanise the others as well. Here, Giordani sounded quite good.

      Tootles and make sure Irma prepares your fish course for this evening *just so*.

      Your fan,

      • Bianca Castafiore says:

        Camillerrima!!!! I don’t know, but I assume it’s the first performance. Wasn’t that streamed live via Sirius or on the Met’s website? As you know I was at both of her Minnies, they were stupendous. If only the Met’s casting department had any sense… She’d been a great Cassandre, Turandot, Elisabetta or Amelia this season.

        Irma is preparing monkfish for tonight. It’ll be delish…

        Mille baci a te, carina.

        • Camille says:

          If the Met’s casting department had any sense…

          If they had sense they would have Erdmann as the hat check girl on the concourse level (playing spin the bottle with the Pateons), with The Gulag as Head of Security and overseeing the parking lot.

          But they don’t have any sense, Blanche.

          • Clita del Toro says:

            Cammiest, Sounds like a new, fun game.

            Q: “If the Met’s casting department had any sense…”

            A: They would cast Latonia Moore as Amelia.

          • Camille says:

            Right, Clita.

            At least I believe she is busy. That reminds me, I’ve got to tell our friend in Detroit about her upcoming Aïda next spring.

            Clita dearest, you heard Leonie sing Ballo, right? Was it better, I hope, than her Elisabetta in Don Carlo? You must have heard Zinka, too?

            While we are at it, whom else can we re-direct into another Met department? Like Berger?


          • Bianca Castafiore says:

            Well, you know, they have Sondra as Tosca next year and Racette as Leonora this year. It is backwards!

            Look who they got for Eboli this year? Smirnova! Is that the best they can find for this part? Ridiculous. And let’s not even get into Troyens…

            Irma!!! My salts!!!!

          • Clita del Toro says:

            Cammiest; Everybody knows that Leonie was flawless in every role.
            I kinda liked her in Verdi (I know, lol). Who doesn’t like 12-tone music?

            I saw Zinka (my first Amelia, and wasn’t that impressed at the time). Also Crespin and Nilsson, I think-- Ricciarelli as well.

            Let’s redirect Giordani to the restaurant as a busboy.


          • Camille says:

            The Smirnova encore I find stupefyingly idiotic.

            Put a cat on the stage to caterwaul through it and it would be a damn sight better. And I refuse to believe she is the only mezzo in the world available or “up” to the vaunted Met standards, good enough to sing the part, a juicy and much coveted one, at that.

            Like you said, Blanche, no sense. Only somebody, somewhere, foisting their management Genda on us and making money off the poor public too cowed or whatever, to swallow it all down.

            For my part, I’m still on strike for Wendy White. Giustiia!

          • Camille says:

            Clifa darling del Toro—

            Yes, that was what I was thinking when listening to her Elisabetta—”gee, didn’t know Arnie Schoenberg had a hand in the rewrites of Don Carlos”.

            Leonie was sui generis. You have to take the bad with the good because the Good was Great. Had I never had the opportunity of having seen her in action, I would never have believed it. Thank god I did.

            I have an early recording of her singing Macbeth, auf deutsch, which is hairraising. I think she sang those Verdi parts in German first, so maybe they were “set” there and the switch to Italian upset her balance. I don’t know but it is a theory.

            Zinka’s recording with Marian Anderson was such a disappointment to me — I think one needs to listen to her forties recordings for her finest. I loved her though, and grew up with her Tosca recording. A great voice.

            I’d love to kiss you but I have to wash my hair! Say hi to Maria, Greta, and JC!


          • marshiemarkII says:

            CammiBelle, of course everything Leonie did was the greatest! what would you say if I told you I have a Ballo with Bergonzi and Jean Madeira (magnificent) from 1962!

            By the way, MMII is only into yellow diamonds :-)

          • Camille says:

            So it is YOU touring around with The Tiffany Diamond, MMII -—
            Bring it on home. I miss it!

          • marshiemarkII says:

            Not not quite CammiBelle, but this will do for now:

    • ducadiposa says:

      Thanks for posting this. What strikes me is a very idiomatic sounding Minnie -- moreso than Stemme or Westbroek. After hearing this again, sung so affectingly by Matos, I don’t think I’d hesitate to say this is my favourite Puccini opera. I never cease to be amazed by the incredible insight the composer gives to these characters. It is so touching -- to me much more so than than perhaps more easy sentiment one finds in Boheme or Butterfly. These are real human beings, warts and all. Minnie’s triumphant entrance in the final act, and her subsequent questioning of the miners “Hey, I’ve given you my life…don’t I deserve some happiness now?” always brings me to tears. I guess it’s kind of obvious why this opera doesn’t enjoy the popularity of a Boheme or Bfly (what is it exactly…hardly any big arias? a more challenging tonality? more through-composed?), but to me, it might be Puccini’s masterpiece. I actually enjoyed Voigt’s performance (HD) well-enough, but wouldn’t argue that this is much better sung…a fuller-sounding tone, more consistent through the range, especially the mid and low range. Still love my Neblett/Domingo recording though!

  • Bianca Castafiore says:

    How about Eva-Maria:

  • veal seduttore says:

    Thanks so much for the Matos -- I heard her sing it (instead of the dreadful, simply wrong Debbie-do-bad) and was knocked out. Why isn’t she better known -- or at the Met frequently? A real spinto…

  • Clita del Toro says:

    I can’t get on the chat because of a new java fuckup. I downloaded it, but it won’t work! What a drag!

  • phoenix says:

    There’s a phony Adobe update going around that puts on something called explorer.exe that fucks up your internet. Do a disk clean up and run antivirus.

  • Dolciamente Pipo says:

    Excellent. Now that I’ve passed my trial by fire on the Parterre Comments board I can relax.
    I didn’t mean to suggest that Voigt was perfect in the role (and I should add that I only saw the HD)…that would perhaps be “insane”…my ideal Minnie lies elsewhere…BUT, her performance engaged me in a way nothing in this clip does. Still, having read some other comments, it sounds like it might behove me to go back to the beginning and watch the whole thing to get a better sense.
    Not sure I’ll find the time…what with the Warlikowski Lulu up and running.

    • marshiemarkII says:

      Well you did Dolce!
      You only had four queens jump all over you! when I first came it was like 30??? :-) :-) :-)
      But it does get better with time. Soon you will be one of the gurls!

    • Bianca Castafiore says:

      Caro Pipo, I didn’t realize you were new here! I didn’t mean to be harsh on you. I just don’t find a performance satisfying when a performer spends so much time trying to make appropriate sounds that won’t come out. As I said, I find it a scandal the Met keeps pushing on us someone with less than half of the registers required to sing… Gioconda, Minnie, Bruennhilde, Cassandre? Are you kidding me? Sorry, your time to retire was about 2006.

      Likewise, Gruber in 2005 spent 90% of the time trying to make some kind of sound but nothing came out. Only at the end of the opera the voice seemed to be kicking in gear, alas too late.

      You have survived the vipers’ nest that is Parterre Box. Now you will do just fine. Just watch out for … Ugh… Nerva!

      • Camille says:


        You should have TM’d that one, MMII!!

        I am sure that Bianca will get good use out of that phrase if she discovers it.

        Don’t worry, Barneys’ jewellry is way too expensive as well. Pure as driven snow diamants are the only Chewells good enough for a Princess von Werdenberg, so I DO understand.

        I go slumming at Tiffany’s, meself.
        Hope all goes well on your block with electricity, etc.

        • Bianca Castafiore says:

          Camillissima!!!! That was I who said that, not marshiissima…

          • Camille says:

            Lol! Don’t want to get in trouble with the Trademarks Department!

            About the first performance, I do not have any idea whether it was on Sirius or not. It was on the 20th of December, though, so it could be checked. I heard the second performance in my car and it was still good but it sounded as though she had surprised by it having occurred at all. She was probably in medias res with the upcoming, at that time, Isoldes.

            She certainly would have been a very welcome change as Turandot. Will there ever been an end to the lockhold the Gulag has on this role?

            Tootles, cara Bianca! Thanks again for posting.

          • Bianca Castafiore says:

            The 2nd performance was due to Voigt cancelling so it was not expected. It was great but not as incandescent as the first one. I think the maestro (Armiliato?) rushed things a bit at the end of Act I (?), you know that magic moment when Minnie goes out into the snow and sighs… I forgot exactly how it goes.

  • phoenix says:

    Pipo, I had just checked de Munt website last week and the Lulu video wasn’t up yet -- or was it up and I screwedup trying to find it?
    - At any rate, many thanks Pipo for your video Lulu reminder above -- I’ve got it going over here now.
    - You have been privileged to be so ceremoniously welcomed by such a canatrice noblesse, MarshiemarkII, pictured below (in her prime) as Elisabeth in

    • marshiemarkII says:

      8-) :-) :-)

      • Camille says:

        Love your earrings, principessa MMIItm.

        Did you get them @ Barneys, perhaps?

        Best and kindest—

      • marshiemarkII says:

        Barney’s?????? for earrings?
        Carissssima, MMII is strictly Harry Winston! :-0

    • marshiemarkII says:

      But fenice cara, you bad gurl, you could have at least found me in more appropriate garb:

      • phoenix says:

        But that was your long-awaited and much cherished Met -- debut 5 January 1885 as Elisabeth in Tannhäuser! How can you dismiss the glory of that consummate occasion!

        • Camille says:

          Phoenix—who was that girl?

          Didn’t recognise her

          Thanks for advice about that bad Adobe download ’cause I think I did get it and now I have to get rid of it or go to the Geek Squad.

          Keep warm.

          • phoenix says:

            Camille, she was a favorite singer in her day (and she was born in the early summer, too, like me!):


            The best way to get rid of the explorer.exe is to go into Computer, right click on Local Disk (C:) and do a Disk Cleanup; then click on Properties and do a complete Disk Check. Make sure you have the latest updates on your antivirus program and also run a full system scan from that antivirus program. if the Adobe update pops up again trying to get you to click on it, run a quick scan and a Live Update from your antivirus program.

          • Camille says:

            Oh my goodness, thank you so much, phoenix.

            I had not seen that photo of Materna before, nor did I realise she sang Elisabeth at the Met! Very interesting.

            It’s not certain whether I downloaded that last night, for checking again today it did not appear but I got a security warning, et cetera, but not certain if new. In any case, thank you so much for the advice and information for it is much appreciated that you troubled yourself.
            Mucho spasibo—C.

      • marshiemarkII says:

        Of course there is nothing to be dismissed caro fenice, it’s just that MMII doesn’t want to be remembered as the Allmaechtger Jungfrau, she is much more the Allmaechtger Konigin [von Mineshaft ;-) ]

        • phoenix says:

          Oh yes, of course -- by far MMII’s greatest role in both width & depth -- how well I remember the old production! Such anticipatory excitement as we waited for your entrance down the grand staircase!

        • marshiemarkII says:

          Fenice!!! Here I was expecting to see me at the Metropolitan Opera grandstaircase, for my unforgettable Allmaechtger Jungfrau, and you pull this!!!
          Bad bad gurl!
          Oh the memories….. oh rimembranza io fui cosi!