Cher Public

“There are no more geniuses, only critics”

Born on this day in 1874 composer Arnold Schoenberg

Born on this day in 1688 composer Luca Antonio Predieri.

Born on this day in 1898 conductor and composer Roger Désormière.

Born on this day in 1917 composer Robert Ward.

Born on this day in 1929 bass Nicolai Ghiaurov.

Happy 83rd birthday soprano Tamara Milashkina.

Born on this day in 1936 tenor Werner Hollweg.

Born on this day in 1939 soprano Arleen Augér.

  • BBC: “Dame Kiri Te Kanawa: I won’t sing in public again”

    • Camille

      good grief! I heard her sing a voiceless Vanessa about 10+ years ago and she just barely got through that! When was she intending to hang it up? Or has MingosenzaDo got competition here?

      • Baron Douphol

        Her dreadful Dvorak and Puccini contributions in her Downton Abbey appearance, nearly the whole hour spent debating on whether she dine upstairs in her room (she is a singer after all!) or downstairs with the family in the dining room. The dining room won and Melba ate with the Granthams (?} But she still had to sing for her supper. Nellie must have been spinning in her grave. KT should have retired there and then

        • Camille

          Rupert Rrrrrnts about it in one of his columns and sizes things up adroitly and to the tee.

          Just having seen this (DA) all for the first time last month I am still REELING that the Earl of Grantham would keep a Dame of the Order of the British Empire constrained to supper in her room!! As IF Everyone in The World did not know her and her fearsome autocratic reputation as Holy Terror by the mid 1920’s! The Earl acted as if she were the character Angela Lansbury played in Dorian Gray, singing about the little bird in a music hall.

          And just think, had Dame Dreary sung better, poor little Anna Bates wouldn’t have gone in search of a headache remedy and thus would have evaded being raped by the ne’er-do-well Mr Green.

          Here’s what Nellie wiuld have sung ’em, if not MUCK!

          • Baron Douphol

            Thank you for that wonderful summary of Downton Abbey. That’s not the point. I was speaking to her voice. Her talent.

  • Camille

    Just now opening up the Lincoln Center White Lights Festival 2017 booklet and want to hasten to post this item:

    The return of John Eliot Gardiner (ossia: Il ritorno di Giovanni Elio Giardiniero) and his MONTEVERDI: THE BIRTH OF OPERA series. Guessing it has to be the same show, more or less, as that one which was heard in Carnegie Hall a year or two back now (note to self: how many times does Monteverdi turn 450?), but this time is be heard in Alice Tully Hall, and please note on the following dates:

    Wednesday, October 18 at 7:00 p.m.,

    The Return of Ulysses
    (Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria),
    Thursday, October 19 at 7:00 p.m., and

    The Coronation of Poppea
    (L’incoronazione di Poppea),
    Saturday, October 21 at 7:00 p.m..

    Monteverdians, unite!

    Most likely, and for the intrepid, there will be reviews of the Carnegie Hall representations of these works in the parterre archives, for those who may be interested or curious (yellow). I will keep mum about my experience.


    First Met telecast..she thought she was chubby….

    We trashed her a lot owing to wiry top notes and essaying heavy
    roles..I was guilty too..BUT when you see this and realize she is the
    very LAST of singers who could phrase like this..ooops..and
    SOVIERO…….It is just “old school” but singers today have NO
    CLUE…Perche??????????… 3:03 is stupendous!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! NO ONE
    like this today

  • Camille

    I note that Arnie got no love yesterday on his Geburtstag. Is that any way to treat a genius???

    These Six Orchestral Songs are a mixed bag but I am particularly fond of Nummer Eins and DEE-lited to find a version with the Great Alessandra and Maestkro Sinopoli and want to share my joy:

    • Lissner chose to open his tenure at the Paris Opera with Moses in a production by Castellucci. I had to admit I’d never taken the time to listen to Moses right through before, and realised my mistake. It was a great way to start the season, and a much more promising start for a newly-appointed director than Nicolas Joel’s choice of Mireille in his own dire production.

      • Camille

        Don’t feel so bad, as Moses und Aron is not exactly a user-friendly toe-tapper. With the exception of the benighted Genevie’s Castle Room, that is.

        I finally have only made peace with the piece via a film, which I highly recommend, and which I saw a while back at MoMA, made by these independent film makers (husband and wife team whose names totally eclipse my memory at moment!), in which the parts meant to be declaimed were done so, and NOT SUNG as they were here at the MET. Also, it hacks me off that Arnie gave very specific instructions in his score, I mean he was a Virgo and a control freak par excellence, which were cast wholesale into the garbage dump on Amsterdam Avenue, apparently.

        I don’t know about Castellucci based on that recent Tannhäuser mess I saw on webcast coming from the Bayern. Maybe he fares better with your production?

        • I liked it. But the one available on video from a converted factory (someone will know what I mean) is spectacular.

            • But, leaving aside the howler, that’s the video I was thinking of:


            • Camille

              Mon cher Monsieur NPW—
              Even if the middle of the night in Paris, I finally came up with the names of those film makers (Straub et Huillet) and since they be French, you may be able to trace this film, somehow, more easily, as you might have access more than we do here. It is certainly worth the effort.

              Here is the Wiki page on the Moses und Aron film which relates back to the Wiki page of the dynamic Huillet-Straub duo.


              Bonne nuit!
              Or perhaps it is Bonjour now.

            • In Boston it’s only 8.30 PM…

            • Camille

              Good for you, M._NPW! I’m so pleased you were able to find it, but then, you knew where to look.

              The fifteen minute short on Schoenberg is also entertaining and interesting. The Von heute auf morgen, well actually, I don’t remember very well as I not only saw it years ago, when it came out, I had an extremely interesting intervention with a Disciple of Serialism at that showing, which has subsequently clouded my experience and judgment of the work. I’d have to see it again.

              One other thing--there is a lovely film on J.S. Bach (something to do with the Anna Magdalena Notebook), which is quite enjoyable and easy to digest and I recommend it highly.

              Very interesting film makers and particularly so much fun leaping from one language and country’s culture, to the next, and so on. There was a very wonderful recitation on the ancient Palatine hill of a Racine or Corneille play (dammit, can’t remember!), among many divers other topics, and, overall was happy to have been able to catch some of Huillet-Straub’s œuvre, as I did!

              My goodness--what are you doing in la
              nouvelle monde? Are you rehearsing Manon Lescaut? (Sorry)!