Tuesday 31 August 2010

En Romanza final + Et portare una rosa

Mi otro perfil
Fortissimo - sus grandes exitos
Track FORTISSIMO - Sus Grandes Exitos
Songs by A. Parera Fons (Et portare una rosa)
1. Oyeme (A. Parera Fons)
2. Como Ayer (A. Parera Fons)
3. Regreso (A. Parera Fons)
4. Et portare una rosa (A. Parera Fons)
5. Julia (A. Parera Fons)
6. La Meva Cuitat (A. Parera Fons)
7. Encadenados (A. Parera Fons)
8. El Niño y el Mar (A. Parera Fons)
Soundtrack to En Romanza Final - Julian Gayarre
9. LA FAVORITA - Spirto Gentil
10. LOHENGRIN - Llegada de Lohengrin
11. LOS PESCADORED DE PERLAS - Mi par d'udure ancora
12. L'ELSIR D'AMORE - Una furtiva lagrima
14. Jota (en la Fragua)
15. IL GUARANY - Sento una forza indomita (con Montserrat Caballé)
16. MEFISTOFELE - Dai campi dai prati
17. Jota (en Palacio)

Songs by A. Parera Fons (Et portare una rosa)
1. Balada (A. Parera Fons)
2. Cancion simple (A. Parera Fons)
3. Todo te recuerdo (A. Parera Fons)
4. Por una noche (A. Parera Fons)
5. Julia (A. Parera Fons)
Soundtrack to En Romanza Final - Julian Gayarre
6. Canto porque estoy alegre (A. Garcia)
7. UN BALLO IN MASCHERA - Escena final
8. La Chancon de l'adieu (Tosti)
9. IL GUARANY - Sento una forza indomita (con Montserrat Caballé)
10 Plegaria (F. Alvarez)

For more reviews from my travels, see www.operaduetstravel.com

Monday 23 August 2010

The real Andrea Chenier

Luigi Illica's libretto ANDREA CHENIER
Come un bel dì di maggio
che con bacio di vento
e carezza di raggio
si spegne in firmamento,
col bacio io d'una rima,
carezza di poesia,
salgo l'estrema cima
dell'esistenza mia.
La sfera che cammina
per ogni umana sorte
ecco già mi avvicina
all'ora della morte,
e forse pria che l'ultima
mia strofe sia finita,
m'annuncerà il carnefice
la fine della vita.
Sia! Strofe, ultima Dea!
ancor dona al tuo poeta
la sfolgorante idea,
la fiamma consueta;
io, a te, mentre
tu vivida a me sgorghi dal cuore,
darò per rima il gelido
spiro d'un uom che muore.

The aria is based on the poem of André Chénier
Come un dernier rayon, come un dernier zephyre
Animent la fin d'un beau jour
Au pied de l'echafaud j'essaye encor ma lyre.
Peut-etre est-ce bientot mon tour.
Peut-etre avant que l'heure en cercle promenee
ait pose sur l'email brillant,
dans les soixante pas ou sa route est bornee,
son pied sonore et vigilant;
Le sommeil du tombeau pressera ma paupiere

Who was André Chénier?
A French poet who was a revolutionary (a moderate one: a leader of les Feuillants) and he was executed during the French Revolution. Why? He was a moderate and he would write against not only the aristocrats but against the revolution leaders likes Robespierre and Marat and others. Hypocrisy and cruelty was something André Chénier fought against.

He was not only a revolutionary and a poet, he was one of France' best writers. He was a titan of poetry and knowledge. He had the disadvantage of coming from a not so wealthy family. His father was a too honest man to become very rich. His mother claimed Greek heritage. André's brothers was also engaged in the Revolution, except Constantin (b. 1757) who became a lawyer and worked for his father. Louis-Sauveur (b. 1761) had a career in the army. Marie-Joseph (1764-1811)  became a famous Jacobin. He was the official dramatist of the Revolution. He had a gift for making enemies where André had a gift for friendship. André-Marie Chénier was the 3rd son and was born on October 30th 1762 and he died on a scaffold on July 25th 1794.

The accusation against Chénier (the opera) and reality?

Nemico della Patria?!
È vecchia fiaba che beatamente
ancor la beve il popolo.
Nato a Costantinopoli? Straniero!
Studiò a Saint Cyr? Soldato!
Traditore! Di Dumouriez un complice!
E poeta? Sovvertitor di cuori e di costumi!

André and his brother Louis-Sauveur were both in Saint-Lazare prison at the same time. When André saw the accusation he saw it was a mix-up with him and his brother. To explain it would easily mean death for his brother and would probably not do him any good. To be a suspect and to have a suspect as brother would be worse. Louis-Sauveur had a soldier (general) with Dumourieuz. André was born in Costantinople and had been a soldier (a short while) and he was certainly a poet and had written against the excesses of revolution.

In opera we have usually a love story and Giordano gives us one with Maddalena de Coigny, the innocent Aristocrat daughter. The real de Coigny was Aimée de Coigny, duchessse de Fleury who was not so innocent. She was married into aristocracy and had many lovers. André knew her and of her and she was not his love interest. There was another lady who was his chaste love, one of his few chaste ones.

My source: André Chenier,  his life and work 1762-1974 by Francis Scarfe, Oxford University Press 1965.  Although the book is in English without good understanding of French it is not always easy to follow. It is written by scholar who is well versed in English and French poetry. The author quotes from letters and book in the original French. He does not use the space to outline in any detail what it means, so unless the reader understand French much goes amiss. Several poems of André Chenier is quoted in this book, naturally all in French.

List of plates  ix
Abbreviations  xi
Introduction  xiii

Part I
1. Beginnings 1
2. 'Gallus' 23
3. Passion and Revolt 46
4. The Chevalier in London (1787-90)

Part II
5. His Views on Poetry  92
6. The Elegies  126
7. The Didactic and Narrative Poems 146
8. The Bucoliques 162

Part III
9. First Steps in Politics (1790-1)  218
10. Chénier and the Feuillants  240
11. The Anti-Jacobin  258
12. The Suspect 281
13. Saint-Lazare 313
14. Thermidor  346

Conclusion 365

Appendix A. Boissy d'Anglas on Chénier  368
Appendix B. Lines written in Hood's Tavern  370
Appendix C. The Feuillant Manifesto  373

Bibliography 375


BONUS: Did you know that Roucher in the opera was already in Saint-Lazare when André came and they where executed on the same day...

For more reviews from my travels, see www.operaduetstravel.com

Saturday 21 August 2010

DVD 1: The Final Romance (Julian Gayarre)

My DVD is a recording from Swedish Television where this Spanish TV series was sent. It was in 5 parts, each part lasted approx 50 minutes.

My recording is approx 225 minutes.

You can buy the movie then it is usually reduced to 125 minutes.

The Final Romance (or EN ROMANZA FINAL, in Spanish) is not the only movie about Julian Gayarre. Alfredo Kraus also made a movie in 1959.

Romanza final (Gayarre)
TÍTULO ORIGINAL Romanza final (Gayarre)
126 min.  
DIRECTOR José María Forqué
GUIÓN José María Forqué, Hermógenes Sáinz
MÚSICA Anton Garcia Abril
FOTOGRAFÍA Alejandro Ulloa
REPARTO José Carreras, Sydne Rome, Antonio Ferrandis, Mario Pardo, Susana Campos, Montserrat Caballé, Alexandra Delli Colli, Carlos Mendy, Alberto Closas, Aitana Sánchez-Gijón
PREMIOS 1987: Nominada al Goya a la mejor dirección artística
GÉNERO Drama | Biográfico. Música. Ópera
SINOPSIS Biografía de Julián Gayarre (1844-1890), uno de los mejores tenores de todos los tiempos. (FILMAFFINITY)

For more about Julian Gayarre, the famous Spanish Tenor: wikipedia, www.juliangayarre.com.

I love it!!!

For more reviews from my travels, see www.operaduetstravel.com

Thursday 19 August 2010

DVD 46: Khovanshina by Mussorgsky

Mussorgsky - Khovanshchina / Abbado, Ghiaurov, Atlantov, Vienna State OperaI should have started with no 1, but I starts with no 46. It was a surprise for me to love this music. It made me even thinking to buy the commercial DVD, My DVD is a copy from my recording from Swedish Television. It has an introduction in Swedish before each act. But it gives some expression of what you will see in this recording.

For a much better review, see Mostly Opera.
Khovanshchina. Vienna State Opera 1989. Production: Alfred Kirchner. Cast: Nicolai Ghiaurov (Ivan Khovansky), Paata Burchuladze (Dosifey), Ludmila Semtschuk (Marfa), Vladimir Atlantov (Andrei Khovansky), Anatoli Kocherga (Shaklovity). Conductor: Claudio Abbado.

For more reviews from my travels, see www.operaduetstravel.com

Tuesday 17 August 2010

Birth, Nationality, Residency - home?

Are we the place we were born? One thing is certain: our birth place is a fact that does not change. Are we our Nationality? Are we our parent's nationality? Are we the country we are living in?

For me it is simple: I am Norwegian. Born in Norway by Norwegian parent's and I still live in Norway as always have been.

Our birth place is one fact that cannot be easily denied. If somebody (famous or not) called one country their home then it would be most impolite to say that they are wrong.

I write about opera singers and I try to be correct in what I say so I often avoid the question of Nationality unless I really know it (from good sources).

For more reviews from my travels, see www.operaduetstravel.com

Friday 13 August 2010

32. Angela Gheorghiu, soprano

My photo of Angela Gheorghiu in Verona 2003-07-31

I saw her as
Violetta Valéry 2003-07-31

LINKS to more information about this artist (agency, schedule etc.):
Personal/other websites

For more reviews from my travels, see www.operaduetstravel.com

31. Alberto Gazale, baritone

My photo of Alberto Gazale in Vienna 2008-02-22

I saw him as
Nabucco 2008-02-22
Tonio 2007-03-10

LINKS to more information about this artist (agency, schedule etc.):
Website: www.albertogazale.com
(and he is on Facebook, too)

For more reviews from my travels, see www.operaduetstravel.com

Dear readers, I am back

I have to apologize but I have started a bad habit. It is called checking Facebook. Didn't I promise never to get into Facebook? Well, it is too late now.

But now I am off for a while. I am planning a few posts but I haven't received the books and therefor not read them. Something about I DUE FOSCARI by Verdi and ANDREA CHENIER by Giordano will be up in the future. It will be in my series Opera vs. Reality.

But now I have to continue my ODT Singers list.

I am truly sorry for my laziness.

For more reviews from my travels, see www.operaduetstravel.com