Soprano Pretty Yende (soon to be a Met Rosina) guests on Stephen Colbert‘s Late Show at 11:35 this evening. (Video after the jump.)
I think she did a lovely job. I am sorry they did not allow time for her to interact with Colbert, instead we got to watch Oprah scramble eggs.
She sang it at a pretty listless tempo but made up for it with her interpolated high notes.
Clearly talented, but lacking in knowledge of the traditions long associated with Rosina’s aria, and if she is simply opting not to embellish her interpretation with the best of those elements, she’s not doing herself or her public any favors. Truncating the highest note at the end is really disappointing. I’m not suggesting that she mimic singers of the past, but to fulfill the moments we have come to expect to be endearing. It also reveals a lack of truly great coaching.
“a lack of truly great coaching”
You’re referring to Devia?
Devia? Of course not. She is devine. As for Sembrich? She and her colleagues were mother’s milk to me.
So she’s divine but she can’t teach?
Maybe she’s Divine!
I believe she worked with Devia which is what AJ is referring to.
Marcella Sembrich taught Florence Page Kimball and she taught our beloved Leontyne.
Excuse me QPF but are you referring to the traditions that have come down to today in performing Rosina’s aria or the traditions of the period when it was first performed? The Rossinian tradition from the primo ottocento was that each soprano had her own personal embellishments which is what I hear from Ms. Yende in this “Io son docile” performance.
If the “best of those elements” is the standard high soprano cadenzas from the old Estelle Liebling book of coloratura cadenzas (i.e. Roberta Peters, Beverly Sills and Lily Pons recorded versions of “Una Voce Poco Fa”) then you are far off the mark. Philip Gossett has really laid waste to Liebling’s bad choices and style in “Divas and Scholars” (pages 328-329) which represent a tradition in decline in the late nineteenth century and a degradation of taste and musicianship.
Rossini himself created cadenzas for Adelina Patti and crack musician Marcella Sembrich wrote them down when she attended a Patti performance of “Il Barbiere”.
Here is her version from 1906:
It is not too far off from what Yende is doing here and really represents a valid tradition of performing the aria in the high soprano version.
Oh Gualtier, the only thing you need to go with that brilliant reposte is a flamethrower finale. Bravo.
Um so a friend listened and followed Yende’s ornaments and said that most of them can be found in these pages:
https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/3fb736c5aac453eb9ffe7b561f15348b76d9d20af2212f591db48b32984b9f29.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/f66e59e062c082398b55f3af3ce0ba3a1365894f403081566da88a13b3e60277.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/aee6ecf151e36d46e85676ece56205d91d8dd7435fb7822147c50da8c84b48fd.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/2c6ea0a9bba3599be8bac9f76bbfa7faca221bb014fa07e57986519c70600a1f.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/8ec42974514689aad25b1da9b839d75b2b3e30a6213b64d8cdc7964486f7ab52.jpg
https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/bc3f80bbd801300aa363ed94e7b4227f00657c2beefbe71ff18b9a9c0e28358f.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/d66f8d1f046e4c6481e543a9470ded1f5607b9930edd19b13a0c1d7219e8f1d0.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/383d8b310bfa656ed5847b3f999005b6055bdfce712c5f458d9b92f27b5b6820.jpg
Also, Marcella Sembrich sang the aria in E, as did Tetrazzini and Callas and other soprano interpreters. Yende sings the aria in F.
I would put it this way. The Liebling style can be fun and exciting in the right hands once in a while. Roberta Peters’ RCA contessinetta is a guilty pleasure. Sills is a bridge too far for me b cause she lacks Peters warm middle register and evenness of production. And the embellishment s are just party tricks in a way foreign to the era. But even Peters is really not Rossini.
She was lovely, and for the late-night TV audience, her presence as a representative of classical music was perfect. A truncated version of any aria on a popular TV show needs not to be picked apart for style in this context. I actually had more issues with how OW was making those eggs. We need instead to send kudos directly to Colbert for inviting classical artists. He’s the first to make a regular habit of it since Carson. Too bad that they don’t get how funny and smart singers can be in conversation with someone who knows how to bring that out. (Martina Arroyo, if you’re reading, you were genius with this aspect of your job and should maybe consider coaching potential Late Show guests?)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=92_Fu1W-uAs Divina admonishes at 25:00 mark.
Exactly! and Here, Apollo Granforte explains how to communicate text in song
My only quibble is the god awful dusty rose prom dress somebody decided she should wear. There is rehearsal footage on the Met Facebook page, and she is slaying it in a lipstick red bandage dress.
My two cents: This is an amazing voice inhabiting a beautiful young woman. The aria presented was for the general public, and they were treated to a complete operatic package sung very well by an enormously engaging rising star. To quibble with the ornaments is ridiculous. On the other hand, I am astonished to hear a voice of that size able to move around so well and to have such high pingy notes. I think in the long run she will sing big Puccini. Right now there is Mozart and Rossini. Someone is watching and guiding her very well.
I saw Pretty Yende as Lucia in Berlin in 2015, she was lovely in an astonishingly old-fashioned production and performing edition, the audience loved her, “Pretty” is exactly what she was in every way, singing, person,, stage deportment (couldn’t really call it ‘acting” in that production, I would like to see her in a more dramatic staging),the voice is rather light and she did not force for volume, if she turned her head away or the orchestra was loud you couldn’t really hear her but that did not matter.
fine Rossinian opposite Podles in ‘Ciro in Babilonia’ at Pesaro, and there can’t be many opportunities for performing that one--
super-nice after the performance at Donn’Amalia--
Love her. She is such a nice woman filled with love for the art. I’m very glad they chose her to do this. She deserves all of the attention & accolades.
I think she would be a wonderful Ilia!!!! The voice can hit the high notes, but I think her strengths lie elsewhere.
The voice has an appealing darkness to it. And she seems very relaxed physically. No tension as far as I can tell. I can think of many worthy examples of singers with similar traits…. ????
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