Friday, July 17, 2009

The Ballad of Polly Ann: The California Report | The California Report

The Ballad of Polly Ann: The California Report | The California Report

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I thought this was an interesting concept for an opera. What I really like is the looping audio, although it would have been much better to use industrial sounds in my opinion. Reminds me how we discussed an opera about climbing.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Idea 1.2

The film version of Alexander Nevsky was made in 1938, 37 years after Verdi had passed away. thoughts:

1) What if Verdi had wanted to write on opera on the subject of Nevsky?
2) What if Prokofiev wrote an opera in his head, and the music that made its way out became the film score (and the subsequent oratorio).
3) What if a spiritual ancestor of Woody Allen were to direct it, or wanted to direct it, but the job went to Sergei Eisenstein (which it of course did).
4) Would Verdi know about Nevsky? how would he find out? How does Queen Victoria fit into all this? Or her daughters? (She had six).

1) The Russian baritone Georgy Baklanov died in 1938.
2) Even more Important, that is the year that Chaliapin died.
3) If neither of them were around, who would have sung the role?

Who says Woody Allen couldn't direct opera??????

For our viewing pleasure:

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Idea 1.1

Verdi upon arriving late to London for the premiere of I masnadieri:

(Note: Budden, Julian. The Operas of Verdi. I. From Oberto to Rigoletto. London: Cassell, 1973.)

He had heard that Jenny Lind, the Swedish songbird, was not going to learn any more roles, and he had written the role with her in mind. Benjamin Lumley, the Impresario, had problems with singers and conductor Michele Costa earlier that year at Her Majesty's Theatre. The conductor and singers let to form Covent Garden.

Previously at Her Majesty's Theatre, when the London audience realized that the baritone singing was not their beloved Tamburini, but newcomer Filippo Coletti, the rushed the stage in protest. Coletti was cast in this new Verdi opera.

From wikipedia: "Queen Victoria and Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha attended the first performance, together with the Duke of Wellington and every member of the British aristocracy and fashionable society that was able to gain admission."

Not the baritone, but someone: