1
   

Opera Buffs I have a question for you.

 
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Wed 13 Feb, 2008 08:15 pm
I suggest that you start by listening to arias, which will give you a chance to hear some of the truly beautiful soprano and tenor parts, without having to wade through stories, which are usually rather pathetic. (Librettos are an excuse for an opera, for the music and the song, and often really suck as stories--although some, such as Cavalleria Rusticana, can be interesting.)

Some of my favorite arias:

Un bel di ("One fine day") from Puccini's Madama Butterfuly, in which the title character deludes herself that her American lover will return for her some day.

Un bel di at YouTube

Mio bambino caro ("Child of my heart") from Puccini's La Bohème

Mio bambino caro at WeShow (UK)

Nessun dorma ("Let no one sleep") from Puccini's Turandot (do you get the idea that i'm fond of Puccini?)

Nessun dorma at YouTube (don't bother with Paul Potts, he sucks--this is Pavarotti, best you'll ever find)

La donna è mobile ("Woman is fickle") from Verdi's Rigoletto

La donna è mobile at YouTube

That'll get you started, and those are some of the all time "hits" in the world of opera arias.
0 Replies
 
Shapeless
 
  1  
Reply Wed 13 Feb, 2008 11:35 pm
Quote:
Mio bambino caro ("Child of my heart") from Puccini's La Bohème


"O mio babbino caro" is from Puccini's one-act opera Gianni Schicchi.






Some more favorites of mine:

Bizet's The Pearl Fishers, which I find at least as lovely as Carmen.

Britten's Billy Budd


At the risk of sounding like a stodgy academic, I would also suggest picking up a book about the rudiments of operatic form--i.e. getting a feel for what a cavatina is, knowing the different parts of a 4-movement scena, the difference between opera seria and opera buffa, etc. Though the music of operas is enjoyable enough, there is also much enjoyment to be found in the ways that composers manipulate formal conventions. Much of what makes Verdi who he is, for example, is the way he took the basic template of Italian opera and made it his own. Understanding the formal features of opera, even at a very rudimentary level, can add a whole other dimension to the listening experience.
0 Replies
 
Gala
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 08:47 am
Setana hit it. Those are the all time fave Arias which will get you hooked.

Here is the Jussi Bjeorling version of La Donne e Mobile:
http://youtube.com/watch?v=yeE33-mE98c

Jussi is like, the king, in my estimation...

more to come....

Shapeless, the Pearl Fishers...I'm going to look for the Robert Merrill version and post it here. Gorgeous.
0 Replies
 
Gala
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 08:49 am
Holy S***, I found the Robert Merrill/Jussi Bjeorling...

Heaven!

Swimpy, Swimpy, Swimpy it's your lucky day.
0 Replies
 
Gala
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 08:51 am
Another winner:

Montserrat Caballe singing Caste Dive in Norma-- amazing stuff.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=FIQQv39dcNE

I'll stop for now...
0 Replies
 
Gala
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 08:54 am
Ooops, here's Jussi and Robert The Pearl Fishers

http://youtube.com/watch?v=5PYt2HlBuyI
0 Replies
 
Swimpy
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 09:24 am
These are great! Thanks. The A to Z opera CDs are good too. I've been listing all morning.
0 Replies
 
Swimpy
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 10:40 am
The Pearl Fishers is wonderful. I had never hear or that one befoe.
0 Replies
 
Gala
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 11:17 am
Swimpy wrote:
The Pearl Fishers is wonderful. I had never hear or that one befoe.


That's the primo recording, those two.
0 Replies
 
hamburger
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 11:36 am
CHORUS OF THE SLAVES FROM "NABUCCO" by VERDI
(it's mrs h's favourite - makes a shiver run down my spine just hearing it - it really grabs me)

http://youtube.com/watch?v=8_aZQ49KFLQ&feature=related
0 Replies
 
Gala
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 11:43 am
Here's the ever controversial diva Maria Callas singing one of the most beautiful arias ever--Vissi D'arte.
Not a beautiful voice but a powerful one.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=r3Qyrz8ERJ8

worth a listen...

Contrast to Birgit Nillson's version:

http://youtube.com/watch?v=wRjBpJ0ZECo
0 Replies
 
Swimpy
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 11:51 am
Shapeless wrote:
Quote:

At the risk of sounding like a stodgy academic, I would also suggest picking up a book about the rudiments of operatic form--i.e. getting a feel for what a cavatina is, knowing the different parts of a 4-movement scena, the difference between opera seria and opera buffa, etc. Though the music of operas is enjoyable enough, there is also much enjoyment to be found in the ways that composers manipulate formal conventions. Much of what makes Verdi who he is, for example, is the way he took the basic template of Italian opera and made it his own. Understanding the formal features of opera, even at a very rudimentary level, can add a whole other dimension to the listening experience.


You don't sound stodgy at all. That's exactly the kind of information I'm interested in. Is there any particular reference you'd recommend?
0 Replies
 
Shapeless
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 12:44 pm
I'll hunt down the references and links to a few book and post 'em soon!

In the meantime, the list continues with these operatic gems (I'm posting recordings rather than videos for some of these because I am not familiar with the ones I'm finding on Amazon):

Weber's Der Freischütz, where German Romantic opera was born. I found a YouTube clip of the famous Wolf's Glen scene... if you can get past the goofiness of this particular production, the invocation of Samiel at the end can be bloodcurdling.

Gershwin's Porgy and Bess

Handel's Rodelinda

Rimsky-Korsakov's Legend of the Invisible City of Kitezh

Britten's Turn of the Screw
0 Replies
 
Swimpy
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 01:20 pm
Jussi Bjorling is an interesting guy. I'd never heard of him before. From Wikipedia:

Quote:
On March 15, 1960, Björling suffered a heart attack before a performance at London's Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. However, he still performed that night.
0 Replies
 
Gala
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 01:45 pm
Jussi and that voice-- kind of a freak of nature.

I don't have an academic approach to opera, mine is all gut.
0 Replies
 
Swimpy
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 01:56 pm
Shapeless, regarding Britten...Opera in English seems wrong somehow.
0 Replies
 
Gala
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 03:25 pm
Swimpy wrote:
Shapeless, regarding Britten...Opera in English seems wrong somehow.


Ah, you are more savvy than you know. Maria Callas felt the same way...
0 Replies
 
Gala
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 03:28 pm
Here's another fave of mine-- Marilyn Horne with her gorgeous, rich, deep mezzo voice. Check out her low tones.

This one is Carmen! Magnificent..
http://youtube.com/watch?v=jTuNUZEFBJk

http://youtube.com/watch?v=0bUAM0ER-Dw
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 03:44 pm
I'm mad for a couple of Callas pieces but, a dummy, I don't know the operas. Gluck - Alceste, and Gluck - Ophee et Eurydice, in the Callas cd, La Divina 2 (I missed La Divina 1)
0 Replies
 
kirsten
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Feb, 2008 04:43 pm
Renee Fleming's autobiography, "The Inner Voice:The Making of a Singer" is a really good read, offering a lot of insight to the world of professional opera.
0 Replies
 
 

Related Topics

Rockhead's Music Thread - Discussion by Rockhead
What are you listening to right now? - Discussion by Craven de Kere
WA2K Radio is now on the air - Discussion by Letty
Just another music thread. - Discussion by msolga
Classical anyone? - Discussion by JPB
Ship Ahoy: The O'Jays - Discussion by edgarblythe
Evolutionary purpose of music. - Discussion by jackattack
An a2k experiment: What is our favorite song? - Discussion by Robert Gentel
THE DAY THE MUSIC DIED . . . - Discussion by Setanta
Has a Song Ever Made You Cry? - Discussion by Diest TKO
 
Copyright © 2020 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.03 seconds on 10/23/2020 at 03:35:38