Cher Public

  • Satisfied: Thank you! NPW! Will check it out. 6:30 PM
  • armerjacquino: Lorenzo: understood and agreed, and apologies for misreading. As far as Verdi is concerned, the kind of nationalism... 6:28 PM
  • grimoaldo: The character eventually known as Beckmesser was called Veit Hanslich in the first draft of the libretto, which Wagner read... 6:26 PM
  • Poison Ivy: lorenzo, I think if Wagner attracted a lot of uh, attention from Nazis and is criticized but Verdi’s strain of Italian... 6:24 PM
  • lorenzo.venezia: Cicciabella, thank you, but I don’t as a rule write about these things, although I think about them and talk about... 5:29 PM
  • lorenzo.venezia: Armer, I agree with you entirely on Merchant of Venice (and The Jew of Malta which panders to the lowest common... 5:22 PM
  • lorenzo.venezia: Ivy, I agree there are undertones and overtones and I’m not arguing against that. My argument is against people who... 5:14 PM
  • NPW-Paris: (That was in reply to Satisfied, and I apologise for the mistakes). 5:13 PM

When I have sung my songs to you

… I’ll just keep on singing until everyone has heard. La Cieca’s debut on “Operavore” is now available on demand, after the jump.  


  • Camille says:

    Complimenti, Cieca cara!

  • DharmaBray says:

    How lovely to hear La Cieca’s fruity voice at last! Now we can auralise each post she puts up!

  • rapt says:

    Thanks for posting this, La Cieca. Love the Freni-Pavarotti anecdote!

  • bassoprofundo says:

    “Houston Grand Opera will mount its first Ring Cycle next season.”

    Wrong. They’re only doing Rheingold “next season.” The other operas will be presented one by one in the three seasons following.

    • derschatzgabber says:

      On the topic of the Houston Ring Cycle. when Houston first announced plans to mount Houston’s first Ring Cycle the production was to have been shared with an Australian company. In the new season announcement, the Australian co-production has been replaced with the La Fur dels Baus production that has played in Valencia and Florence (and been released on DVD). I think the switch of productions was a smart move. The Fura dels Baus production will probably do very well at the box office. I’m seriously thinking of going to Houston to see this production live. What I have seen on Youtube looks very interesting.

      On a related topic, rumor has it that one of the reasons Gockley left Houston for San Francisco was the Houston Board’s refusal to be a co-producer of the Zambello Ring. Once he was gone, the Board apparently decided that Houston needed a Ring. Do any Parterianni have more information on what really happened with Houston’s decision to mount the Ring after all?

      • bassoprofundo says:

        You’ll have to go four consecutive seasons then, as they are NOT doing the whole Ring in one season, as this podcast erroneously reports. Next year: Rheingold. Following year: Walkure. Year after that: etc etc.

    • DharmaBray says:

      This has apparently left Opera Australia, the mooted original co-producer, $1mil out of pocket.

      I guess Houston went for a known production which was probably cheaper to remount than coproducing a new one. But these are just guesses. Ianw2 do you have any insights?

      • derschatzgabber says:

        Dharmabray, thanks for the link.

        For anyone who is interested, here is a link to another article on Houston pulling out of the Australian Ring.,houston-grand-opera-drops-the-melbourne-ring.aspx

        Another interesting twist to the Aussie Ring story, “The Norwegian baritone Terje Stensvold, who will be 70 by the time of the performances, replaces Juha Uusitalo as Wotan.”

        Will Mr. Stensvold set a record for oldest singer appearing as Wotan in a full cycle? Have any Parterianni heard him sing?

        • Buster says:

          Terje Stensvold was a fabulous Barak here in 2008, with Evelyn Herlitzius as his wife.

          • Feldmarschallin says:

            I will hear him sing der Wanderer in July at Bayerische Staatsoper. Uusitalo cancelled again.

        • Regina delle fate says:

          He also got great reviews for the Frankfurt Ring in June. His is a fascinating career -- house lyric baritone in Stockholm until he was forced to retire at 55 (compulsory by Swedish law) and then he was “rediscovered” as an international singer when he einsprang in a period instrument recording of Holländer and he has never looked back. He was an excellent Don Pizarro in a Mackerras concert Fidelio and a fine Barak in Amsterdam as Buster says. He’s a real old-school legato Wagnerian singer -- perhaps lacking a bit of heft at the top, but considering his age, amazing really. Might not work at the Met, San Fran or Chicago, though.

          • derschatzgabber says:

            Thanks Buster, Feldmarschallin, and Regina. Your posts sent me to Google to look for more information on Mr. Stensvold. He certainly has an unusual career trajectory. Based on your comments and the reviews I read online, Australian Ring fans should be glad that he was available to replace Uusitalo.

      • ianw2 says:

        No further information, but not a huge surprise. Freud’s aesthetics were much more in-sync with OA’s (it was HGO which basically funded Neil Armfield’s opera career) than Summer’s.

        (Also, Summer’s ex is Australian so maybe he couldn’t stand all the accents, hahahahaha)

        • ianw2 says:

          Oh, and there was also some huge bust-up with their Australian chorus master (no, I don’t know the details so I’m not being coy)so maybe they were just sick of Australians all round.

          • Dick Johnson says:

            Just to set the record straight here, there was a bust-up, but it was not with (non Aussie) chorus master Richard Bado, who has been a well-loved HGO institution for many years now. The bust-up was with the (Aussie) Music Director of their young artist program. He was dismissed before he even completed one season with the company.

  • Quanto Painy Fakor says:

    • bassoprofundo says:

      How do you communicate on a day-to-day basis?

      If you’re at a restaurant, and the waiter asks what you want to eat, do you reply by showing him a YouTube video of a kite?

    • Camille says:

      QPF! How COULD you forget the one singer that trumps ALL in this song?

      La Doyenne would become incazzata if you left her out!

    • Feldmarschallin says:

      Everytime I watch the Connell I am in tears. Her humanity comes through and to know that she would be dead 6 weeks later is shattering. She was a great artist and woman.

      • omghahahalol says:

        Well said, Feldmarschallin.

        On a lighter note: bite me, but doesn’t our presenter (NOT La C) sound rather like Ms. Juntwait? That accent, the fach in general…

      • huswest12 says:

        Miss Connell was born in South Africa and sang in Australia many years.

  • Satisfied says:

    LOVES IT! I REFUSED TO GET ON A SUBWAY ON SATURDAY UNTIL IT WAS OVER!!!! Though, I did find one of the commenters (pre-LC) too broad for words..,I think I know less about bel canto now than I once did, thanks to this gentleman :-/

    That aside…i’m now hooked on Operavore and WQXR!

  • Feldmarschallin says:

    Well finally got to listen to this. Sadly La Cieca only has a few minutes at the very end and had to endure from McNally and Horne how horrible opera is in Berlin since they dare to update things. Hopefully in the upcoming episodes La Cieca will have a bigger role and can perhaps educate the audiences a bit about these ‘horrible Berlin productions’.

    • Gualtier M says:

      I noticed that La Cieca said twice as much about bel canto than Fred Plotkin in half the time.

  • Ilka Saro says:

    Congrats to La Cieca, a refreshing voice in the wilderness of mild mannered commentators.

    And I remember that Boheme! Between Kleiber, Pavarotti and Freni, it was as though they were singing a completely new opera. I also remember when the curtain went up and Pavarotti stepped onto the “balcony” of Zeffirellis garret, I very briefly wondered who he was, because he had just taken off a lot of weight and didn’t look like the Luciano P that I was accustomed to.

  • aulus agerius says:

    Sounds like LC had a cold.
    I thought La Boheme was verismo, not bel canto. Non e vero?

  • kashania says:

    I disagree with Fred Plotkin’s assertion that Wagner would never admit that some of his vocal writing was based on in bel canto style. Didn’t Wagner say that he wanted his singers to emulate that style when singing his music (or words to that effect)?

  • kashania says:

    While I enjoyed La Cieca’s appearance at the end of this segment, I wish they would give her more time and allow her to appear as JJ and just talk opera.

    • Milady DeWinter says:

      Agreed kashania! I think this was perhaps more of an “pilot episode set up” and should evolve into more air time for La Cieca as the show progresses. Glad this was posted as I had guests this past weekend and had to forgo the broadcasts, both this and Stuarda.

  • Jack Jikes says:

    Great La Cieca -- what a superb Divina clip. Could we please be offered a dialogue with Milton? I miss him.