Cher Public

Radio days

Born on this day in 1920 soprano Vivian Della Chiesa

Born on this day in 1835 composer Camille Saint-Saens.

Born on this day in 1899 contralto Mary Jarred.

Born on this day in 1900 soprano Marcelle Bunlet.

Born on this day in 1919 soprano Irmgard Seefried.

Happy 80th birthday soprano Joan Carden.

Happy 64th birthday mezzo-soprano Sally Burgess.

Happy 54th birthday soprano Christiane Oelze.

  • La Cieca
  • La Cieca

    “The major problem I heard with the opera is that everything is grandiloquent, sometimes to the point of bombast. Big and shiny and full of fanfare, the music is two parts John Adams to one part Jerry Goldsmith. By the halfway point, I began to wonder if the antagonists in this war were Confederates or Klingons.”

    Our Own JJ on Crossings and soprano Angel Blue:

  • chicagoing

    More than the usual opera activity in Chicago this past weekend. Received an e-mail from Lyric Opera alerting me as a ticket holder that Friday evening’s Orphee et Eurydice was being taped for PBS’s Great Performances. I wasn’t irritated, assuming it would only elevate the proceedings. I am certain LOC is proud and happy to open their season with this collaboration with the Joffrey Ballet and it is also true that any dancing in past productions has been lame at best or at times ridiculously bad (caped bat boys in Rinaldo) but I must report there is an awful lot of dancing going on in this production, probably too much for someone who has not attended an operatic evening since the season ended six months ago and was anxious to hear voices. I am therefore looking forward to Rigoletto which opened the very next night. (Promotional blurb on the small marquee on the north side of the buidling reads, “RIGOLETTO U THINK UR BOSS IS BAD” -- really?) Rosa Feola’s Gilda seems to be the big news. Rapturous reviews across the board. Excellent notices for Matthew Polenzani as well. Quinn Kelsey in the title role was dubbed by one critic as “not in the same league” but more favorably reviewed by others. Saturday was also the annual fund raiser Operathon on WFMT. They cut it short by ending to broadcast the Rigoletto opening night. Listened only just a little. Noted that the promotional booklet which in years past had pages and pages of merchandise (CDs signed by artists in upcoming productions, posters from past performances etc, ) had been pared down to just over a dozen opera shop type items.

  • Dan Patterson

    La Cieca, thanks so much for posting the Bunlet recording, unknown to me and a real find. I knew Balguerie’s version of this aria, but I think I like Bunlet’s better. Much appreciated!

  • Armerjacquino

    Fell down a wiki hole and found this utterly lovely thing:


    Bless her!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Handelmaniac’s review of the Regina documentary

    Regina Resnik: New York Original
    As much as I knew Regina Resnik for over 50 years, there was so much treasured material on the CUNY video,produced by her loving son, Michael Davis, that the tears flowed by the conclusion of the film.
    The film was narrated by Denyce Graves, with many guest comments by Martina Arroyo,Theresa Stratas, Richard Bonynge,Zubin Mehta, Harold Prince, Joel Grey, and Craig Rutenberg. There was so much candid footage of her life, rehearsals, her own narrations at various venues, and some video material knew to even ME, like the Carmen Card Scene and some audio clips I did not have, despite the fact that I once raided her collection of material from 1942.
    I also loved seeing the producer of this film, little baby Michael, whom I first met at Regina’s, and who sang a portion of Marina’s music at age 6.
    I always speak of Regina as the ONLY opera artist who was a great success on stages all over the world in both soprano and mezzo roles (Her teacher, Giuseppe Danise, husband of Bidu Sayao, always said she was destined to become a mezzo, owing to the richness of her voice, although in the soprano fach she was still amazing.) and as coach,producer,director,filmmaker, and star on the broadway stage in Cabaret and A Little Night Music.
    Just listen to that voice as it grew from age 20 through the years, and the maturity exemplified in the 1953 Bayreuth Sieglinde through the magnificent 1961 Fricka. You also see the hilarious Quickly and the scary Klytaemnestra. One night she explained to us how she built that laughter, and in the house, it was devastating.
    Basta, could go on ad infinitum ed ad nauseum. Just go to Youtube and you will hear some of the greatest singing, from the early “Ernani Involami” and another 35 years of greatness.
    Thanks, Michael, for this treat and I am glad her memory is preserved for many others to appreciate. Sincerely, Charlie