I’ve reached one of my goals for 2017: with this week’s upload of Edgar, you can now find at least one complete performance of every opera by Giacomo Puccini on my Mixcloud site. Bryan Hymel and Angela Meade star in the composer’s second opera in a concert performance from Frankfurt in 2014. Read more »
For this week I had planned a performance of Lakmé with Ruth Welting, Alfredo Kraus, and Paul Plishka, only to discover after posting it that somewhere in the technologic processes it takes to prepare an upload, 75% of it morphed into ear-shattering noise. Since I am lacking in French opera, I have substituted a performance of Gluck’s Alceste from Wiener Staatsoper in June 2016. Read more »
In our circle, Mexico City in the summer was the opera capital of the world from the late 1940s and early 1950s, dominated by first attempts at roles by a certain Senora Meneghini, of which many have been well-documented, including my favorite: a totally out-of-control Rigoletto (one of two times La Divina tried it out). But her nights off frequently offered performances of equal – or, dare I suggest it – even greater quality. This week, I offer a 1949 La favorite (sung in Italian) with some youngsters: Cesare Siepi (26), Giuseppe Di Stefano (27), and two “verterans;” Enzo Mascherini (38) and Giulietta Simionato (39). Read more »
I offer an alternative to those who aren’t fans of Wagner: Mozart’s La clemenza di Tito from the house where it premiered.
The cast of Wiener Staatsoper’s first-ever performance of Lulu in 1968 reads like a Who’s Who of then-contemporary Austro-German opera: the 28-year-old Anja Silja, Martha Mödl, Waldemar Kmentt, Hans Hotter, Hilde Konetzni, Manfred Jungwirth, Heinz Zednik, and Karl Böhm presiding over a production by Otto Schenk.