Anna Netrebko sings “Tvajo malchan’je nepan’atna” from Iolanta earlier this evening at the Liceu, Barcelona.
Took me a while to realize why this is a “blind” item. Yuck yuck.
Poor Iolanta, when she regains her sight she is going to get quite a shock at what she is wearing -- who in the world dressed her??
The singing is sublime.
Iolanta is my favorite opera by Tchaikovsky, and this is a section from what must be one of the most beautiful and moving love duets in all opera. I heard Netrebko sing this duet nearly three years ago during a visit by the Mariinsky to the Kennedy Center--it was by far the best thing I’ve ever heard her do, and one prays that the rumor that she will sing this opera at the MET in few years is true!
Iolanta is one of my favorite operas, ever, not just Tchaikovsky. And yes, the love duet is out of this world. Soaring, romantic lines, beautiful text (“I don’t need sight to know that beauty exists in the world, I can feel it all around me!”) The tenor and baritone also have amazing arias. The performances she did with Beczala were a rare kind of operatic perfection that only comes about when the stars are aligned.
Ido not know Iolanta, if this is a representative sample it has beautiful music. Why is it not more often performed (at least outside of Russia)?
There was a production of Iolanta done last year in the spring in Boston, by some underground company. It had Dina Kuznetsova (Met) as Iolanta, Adam Klein (Met) as Count Vaudemont, Mikhail Svetlov (Bolshoi) as King Rene, and David Gvanianidze as Robert. The production was somewhat amateurish, but the singing was to die for. It was transposed for a chamber sized orchestra, but it sounded big and glorious, they had really good musicians in the orchestra as well. It didn’t hurt that the music is so gorgeous too. Unfortunately there was only one show, with a second show having local up and coming singers. The second run was visibly lower quality than the first cast.
I LOVE this opera which I have seen many times- in Yerevan, Leningrad, Carnegie Hall, Di Capo, AVA.. and there are now several video versions.
The one Cieca posted is made in the Riga Studios; strong Bolshoi musical team: Khaikhin leading the voices of Galina Oleinichenko, Zurab Anjaparidze, Pavel Listsian, Ivan Petrov, Vladimir Valaitis, Evgenia Verbitskaya and Kira Leonova, usw.
I was lucky enough to see that film at a small arts theater in LA/Hollywood when it first came to the US.
I was totally transfixed. At that time it was very difficult to get a recording of the opera. I went to see the film a second time and tried “memorizing” the music.
I later saw it in Moscow as part of the cultural program for an International Mathematics Conference, but that film version lives in my soul.
Amazing that Tchaikovsky’s most perfect work ( in my opinion) is NOT based on Pushkin, but on “Kong Renes Datter” by the Danish poet Henrik Hertz.
A live performance excerpt of her Natasha has finally surfaced on YouTube:
Nice catch, SFGuy. The moment where Kuragin steps out from behind the mirror is a stitch!
Natasha’s wonderful aria -- so beautiful for Netrebko too. I shall never forget the Boston performance with Arlene Saunders the day she learned that her father had died. Notwithstanding, Arlene went on that night and in this aria, when Natasha sings “Oh God if he were only here”, her tears were real and still she kept on singing. Need prokofiev playing now:
Look on youtube for the duet w.Netrebko and Beczala.I discovered this work when we did it in Paterson,NJ in 1965…Paul Plishka was King Renee and Galvany was the Yolantha…That was when I met her..as her doctor.
The Met does it soon w.Netrebko and Piotr along with Bluebeard’s Castle….
Iolanta w/Netrebko & Beczala in Salzburg, 2011:
These were very rare and special.
Made my day. Thanks.
A longer selection from the Liceu concert.
Who is this tenor?? He’s terrific, even if his hair is the equivalent of Anna’s frock.
Seems to be:
Is this perhaps a Regie-Konzept inspired by the German expression: ‘Auch ein blindes Huhn findet mal ein Korn’? (Sometimes, a blind chicken can also find a grain of corn.) So, Iolanta as Rhode Island Red.
May I just add my fervent prayer and wish for this Iolanta to materialise at the MET, for I, too, fell head over heels in love with this lovely work, and with no foreknowledge thereof, on the one and only occasion I heard it.
Bring it ON, Anna! Just burn that dress first! Not your colour!
For the Iolanta at Salle Pleyel last November (with a different orchestra and a mostly different cast), she wore a stunning princesse-style strapless dress that is ideal for her current figure. And the fabric was to die for: a pale pink crêpe inlaid with a dark pink thread like those marbled carnations (only finer and in relief). And BTW, she sounded great, this role is a perfect fit.
Oops, stop the italics after “Iolanta”.
Yes, pink; no, orange.
I’m underwhelmed, ah well.
Lovely singing, very sensitive, and she looks beautiful. Thank you for posting this.
This duo was the best moment vocally and expressively in the entire performance. She started rather cautiously. The duet was very good and by the end of the opera she already sounded a little bit hoarse, because apparently she run out of ressources. Anyway, I guess Iolanta is the best thing Netrebko has done so far. She certainly is more comfortable with her native Russian. She gives so much more sense to the words than in Massennet or belcanto. Besides, Iolanta isn’t too long and is not too demanding. And not popular enough, so that she doesn’t have dozens of legendary sopranos to be compared with. Being a soprano who (still) relies more on the generous nature of her vocal material than on a solid technical sustain, a role like this is best suited for her. May she have the intelligence NOT to sing Norma, Lady Macbeth or other similar roles…
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