Yep, the series is merrily going along. The latest installment linked below follows the action from Vitellia doing her snarky best to congratulate Servilia for her good luck to the end of Act I.
I’ve quite been enjoying this weekly exercise in rediscovering an old fave. It’s doing a good job at pulling me back into the opera fold 🙂
Continuing this series throughout the month only makes sense. Part 2 takes us from Deh, se piacer mi vuoi to Ah, se fosse intorno al trono. That’s because I decided, as I was re-listening, the music was too good not to include, so there’s quite a lot of it and a surprising amount of Garanca, too. Way more than you’d expect from me 😉 Another things is I got overly inspired to discuss the themes of the libretto. It’s really quite different when you talk vs when you write, especially as I am talking basically as I am listening, just giving in to whatever the music brings to mind. And, like I said, this production has always inspired me to think 🙂 Makes a bit of a change from all the other times 😉
Well, here we are, 230 years later, which feels right about how long it’s been since I last properly updated. Happy Tito Day to all 🙂
I started a mini-Tito series, in order to celebrate, in which I talk (I’m under the illusion it goes faster than writing… I may be wrong) about my perennial favourite Tito production – the Sellars 2017, obviously. Just kidding, wrong Salzburg year, wrong speed 😉 Give it a listen below. You know you’ve missed
my soothing voice vintage non-Currentzified Mozart…
Why, hello! It’s been a few weird months, eh? Anyway, I did not forget today rounds up 229 years of Mozartian Titoness. But because it’s been the kind of year where trips to the opera have added up to a grand total of nil for yours truly, I’ll leave you with a Tito gif-joke I just know y’all love and have missed 😉
I have to say, I had not realised just how much regular outings to the opera / other cities contribute to my sanity. I always had a feeling I was exaggerating a bit by overbooking. Turns out, no amount of hours spent gaming a kazillion different games or reading or listening to podcasts or even playing with pets has a similar effect. I always thought I could win one of those “locked up for a month in a cabin in Alaska in the middle of winter” challenges but this year has proved me wrong. I needs people! and exciting locales! and a good ol’ live show where half the audience is coughing and your only worry is that they’re disrupting a really fine performance. Remember that? Innocent times. On the other hand, the garden at work has never looked better. Neither did the cupboards in my kitchen… But, honestly, I’d even go watch this Tito right now 😉
DaPonte: … and the biggest joke of all shall be its title!
One of my colleagues likes to listen to ClassicFM and although the playlist is mostly waltzes, 19th century stuff with cymbals, Mozart piano music, waltzes, film music, Elgar, more waltzes or arias recorded at least 30 years ago, the posh sounding DJs have somehow not managed to learn how to say the opera titles/aria names the composer failed to provide in English for our convenience. I haven’t felt so proud of my Italian opera title proficiency in a good while.
Conclusion: the music selection might be mostly boring, but listening to ClassicFM DJs’ mangled Italian will make you feel good about yourself.
PS: the prize of the current ClassicFM competition is a trip to Maastricht to visit Andre Rieu’s fairy castle. I mean, come on! Who would refuse that?! I did. I went to Maastricht last month, spent more time than strictly necessary and I still failed to visit that wonder of the classical world 😦
Hello, Tito fans! Long time no talk and even longer no Tito talk. Here‘s the first Tito broadcast of the year that I can think of, audio stream of the resilient 1792 Ponnelle production, with Met Sesto-in-chief JDD and others. Hope you enjoy! I hope I don’t fall asleep, there are 2 hours to go until kick-off. (This paragraph refers to 3 April 2019; if you got here after that date, the link is no longer of help, unless you want to know the future Met audio broadcast dates).
ps: the RAI broadcast of the Florence Tito last month was the first of the year. I’m going to talk about it, as well, in a while. Sorry for all the delays; such is life.
ps2: I did fall asleep.
In case you need a reminder: check it out. At the Tchaikovsky Concert Hall.
Il ritorno di Tobia Haydn
Overture and aria Sudo il guerierro
Haydn’s stuff is always fun until he gets too noodly. I thought the aria was a bit low for her but an always welcome start.
Paride aed Elena Gluck
Paride’s mournful aria (don’t know the title)
It fit her very well; really nice variations in the middle section.
La clemenza di Tito Mozart
Overture and Deh, per questo instante solo
Capuano’s take on the overture is of the jaunty kind. There is a reason is often played in concerts. Her take on Deh, per questo… is something I think I talked about before. very affecting and natural at the same time ❤
Orphee et Eurydice Gluck
Amour, viens rendre a mon ame
Just yes, with a lot of warm smiles. The public loved it, too. Somehow 40min went in a blink.
L’italiana in Algeri Rossini
Overture and Cruda sorte!
The overture got out the bombast but perhaps not so much the Italian silliness. AH got all that in Cruda sorte. Just wonderful and tossed off like nothing.
Song of the willow
I know nothing about any Ot(h)ello operas, honestly. It sounds beautiful enough and very suited to AH’s tone.
La favorite Donizetti
Favaritka? It sounded like that in Russian. The darkest thing so far. The Russians love to go very Romantic on things.
Arsace! not the obvious choice from him, either but In si barbara sciagura.
Che faro senza Euridice Gluck (Orfeo)
Really heartfelt, but then again, it’s AH.
Il segreto per esser felice Donizetti (Lucrezia Borgia)
Great to hear Il segreto…! The drinking song with a dark undertow. One of the first mezzo arias I got into, in that random manner one does. I want to listen to it on repeat now. Is there something she can’t sing?
Well, is it?
It depends. It’s certainly rather too long. The story has potential not matched by the librettist’s skills. The mezzo hopeful doesn’t have access to any arias on the level of Parto or Deh, per questo…
But there is a ravishing duet that does often include a mezzo and there is Fuor del mar for the Mozart tenor. Most famous of all is Elettra’s showstopper. And lest we forget, the choruses, which do rival Tito‘s (I have been quoted in the past saying they are better. Again, it depends on who’s conducting/singing). Also, Mozart himself was very excited to write it and there are many letter back-and-forths between him and his father to document the (not particularly smooth – due to external forces -) process.
Conclusion: mixed bag. Definitely worth a listen but pick your conductor/singers/chorus combo wisely. Make sure your Idamante is a mezzo, the other options simply fall short here.
Yes, it’s that time of the year again when we harvest what we sow. You may have noticed I’ve been rather quiet this month but the backstage has had some activity recently, with yours truly busy tinkering at this little gift which I hope everyone who reads the blog will enjoy 🙂 and if you don’t… well, you can skip to the 12:55 and listen to Eterni dei, in a version I’m sure you will recognise.
Ep 3: True Crime Tito
Without further ado, here’s episode 3 of the opera. innit? podcast, from which I drifted away a couple of years ago due to it taking too long to produce. But I like to hear myself talk too much to actually give up, even in the face of laziness (which I admit is one of my – very few 😉 – weaknesses) and competition from pressing “real life” activities.
So, yea, that’s where you get after years of thinking about Tito too much and talking about it too little (although, thanks to you, dear reader – and often more than once, opera buddy – I’ve talked about Tito more than I thought I ever would 5 years ago).
edit 17/10/18: sounds like Vesuvius may have erupted later than we’ve thought for hundreds of years… rather after 17 October 79AD than on 24 August 79AD…
Giulietta Simionato is one of my (few) favourite Romeos but I just found today – whilst researching the state of Tito nowadays – that she’s ended her illustrious career (willingly) singing… Servilia in La Scala’s small hall. File it under odd choices to go out on. It’s interesting, but more like how Annio would sing it (obviously):
ps: don’t get excited, it’s not her singing Non piu di fiori later – though it would’ve been cool for her to sing Vitellia, however she apparently made her decision late in the game (every other role was taken). So, yes, La Scala allowed Tito about 90 years ago – in the small hall, mind.