Sunday 19 September 2010

34. Denyce Graves, mezzo

My photo of Denyce Graves in London 2004-03-20

I saw her as
Carmen 2008-05-24
Dalila 2004-03-20

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

For more reviews from my travels, see

33. Marcello Giordani, tenor

My photo of Marcello Giordani in Verona 2007-06-29

I saw him as
Arrigo (I Vespri Siciliani) 2004-06-02
Arturo (I Puritani) 1995-09-02
Rodolfo (La Boheme) 2007-06-30

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

For more reviews from my travels, see

Wednesday 15 September 2010

Maria Guleghina is coming to Oslo in December

My favorite Tosca, Maria Guleghina, is singing Tosca in our new wonderful opera house. December 19, 28, 30 TOSCA in Den Norske Opera & Ballett, The Norwegian National Opera, OSLO.

Here is Maria Guleghina from the Opening Gala of our wonderful new Opera House.

For more reviews from my travels, see

Tuesday 14 September 2010

Maria Guleghina is feeling better (TOSCA 11.9.2010)

- and so was I. After a week with back pain on and off finally Friday I felt good again. It became a normal Friday except that I was really going to Zürich to see TOSCA with Maria Guleghina, Marcelo Alvarez and Ruggero Raimondi.

Without Facebook I would not have known that Maria Guleghina had sung one Tosca against the doctor's order. Before the the performance there was an announcement by the management about the Grippe that was going on in the opera house. It was affecting Spoletta, the tenor had had the voice of a bass in the morning but was going to sing anyway. Had I not heard the word Spoletta I would have thought it was Cavaradossi who was affected. Marcelo Alvarez did seem to be very careful in his singing in act 1 but so was Maria Guleghina and Ruggero Raimondi. Marcelo Alvarez sang a precious "Recondita armonia" and showed himself to be an excellent actor. Maybe it was because Alvarez was so careful in his singing that Maria Guleghina was mimicking him or perhaps she still was not completely well. My only real complaint about the duet was the audience reactions, laughing at the jealousy of Tosca. Here one hear the wonderful act 1 duet and people are laughing. How rude it is! The interaction between Ruggero Raimondi (Scarpia) and Maria Guleghina (Tosca) was amazing. Real acting. And then act 1 ended with "Tre sbirri" and Te Deum. With act 1 the opera did not take flight, not yet, the singers were far too careful for that. PAUSE

Act 2 and with the first note that was sung the opera flying high. Ruggero Raimondi used his age to the advantage to create his menacing Baron Scarpia. This was an old and dangerous Scarpia. Marcelo Alvarez was the noble and aristocratic Cavaliere, proud and in defiance. Maria Guleghina was the Diva and Woman in Love. Act 2 was high drama, wonderfully acted and sung. I loved her "Vissi d'arte", it was so pure and true. For me there are no Tosca like Guleghina and how she sang acted to Cavaradossi and Scarpia was amazing. And unforgettable it was when Tosca realized after the fury and fear that she has really murdered someone.

Act 3 gave a wonderful "E lucevan le stelle" by Alvarez and of course the duet with Guleghina was a wonderful, too. Strange as it seem I still cannot say it was the best Tosca performance that I have seen. I have seen Marcelo Alvarez, Maria Guleghina and Ruggero Raimondi making better Tosca performances but never together. This performance came close to be the best TOSCA performance.

Still, the shouts of Brava and Bravo was highly deserved. And after the performance Marcelo Alvarez came first out the stage door, then Ruggero Raimondi and lastly Maria Guleghina. Then I got the chance to ask Maria Guleghina if she was feeling better. And she said yes, and that made me so very, very happy. And I used the opportunity to tell her how I enjoyed the way she sang "Vissi d'arte". And then we were both free to go, each over way.

BRAVA, Maria Guleghina! Brava!

For more reviews from my travels, see

Monday 6 September 2010

Pain and soon travel to Zurich?

Since Saturday I have had back pain. It has been on and off. Unfortunately mostly on. Night to Sunday was not something I would like to repeat. It was 12 hrs of pain starting late evening on Saturday and not ending until Sunday morning. And then it started again just in time to ruin an other evening. And now on Monday I had to stay at home, but I did manage a visit to the doctor. I am so lucky it is only a 10-minutes walk away. I thought about going shopping some food and medicine as I were up and going, but even that short distance felt like it would be too much. Beside I have some medicine and food so why bother. Then back to bed after taking the prescribed medicine.

But then it is next weekend. My doctor said if I have fever then don't go. And of course if the pain is already great on Friday evening / night then I will not go. I loved the Munich concert with Baltsa in July but the pain of traveling while having back pain is not something I want to repeat. So I can just wait and see if I will get to Zürich to see Tosca with Maria Guleghina, Marcelo Alvarez and Ruggero Raimondi. A dream team for me. But with pain the dream can become quite a nightmare.

For more reviews from my travels, see

Saturday 4 September 2010