Upstairs Jordie: Phony Baloney Mission
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When things are going well, people pull away from each other somehow. A year or two ago no one thought about what was going to be the problems of the world today. So all the plans we had for now have to be changed. A year ago my father was still alive. Today he is not. I think the best way is to live for today.
Carpe diem. And prepare for the future. JC: Traveling around the world in the last month you feel the same, an unease that a big deal of the problem was that we were living an unreality. And apart from the fact that, unfortunately, a lot of people are suffering from this crisis, it is not too bad that it happened now, because we still have time to recover.
I am enjoying life in the sense that I am lucky. I have a beautiful family, I have been with my wife for thirty years and my kids are growing up beautiful and healthy, so I have everything I wish to have. Maestro Gives Back. British Youth Opera Masterclass Raw Emotions, Bared Feelings.
Yet you still went on to sing. I had always known intuitively that this kind of message would reach me eventually, when least expected. But it was also clear to me that I was bound to break down and cry for a week whenever my father passed away. I was distraught about that, too. Now add the fact that the performance would have been cancelled if I had not sung.
I had Alexander Pereira, the theater manager, announce me with an introduction. And I dare say that I sang as never before.
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In any case, it was as intense as never before. I will surely not be able to repeat that. I hope, I will never have to sing this part again, ever. The conductor was also crying, as was the audience. Have you grown tired of your career as a singer? After a certain period of time, they come to taste bitter. Massenet, too, is after all a good composer but not one with whom any given note could only be this one way and no other. I must say that in the course of my career, I have taken the stage in quite a few works, which are, musically speaking, not completely satisfactory.
I am more honest, more genuine, when I am doing something that really engages me mentally, that touches me on the inside. I have moved among a limited number of roles and role offerings for too long. Besides, I am sensitive to the limitations, the finite nature of my profession. Giuseppe di Stefano, recently deceased, had a colorful, richly varied, perhaps excessive life. He lived to be 86 years old, but his career was at a peak not even twenty years. Compared with him, I am quite small. Nobody wonders about three Italian-speaking tenors. The more serious answer would be that as a people we are very much a cultural mix.
Thus, as far as ancestry is concerned, I am absolutely Mediterranean. At least, that might be a cultural explanation for why I ended up in Italian opera. Not on account of me, to be sure, but rather because the future principal conductor would prefer to do a full-fledged stage production. My problem is: I consider learning a text phonetically the worst of all ways imaginable.
To be sure, the only Wagner role that could indeed tempt me would be Tristan. Was your voice misjudged so badly? I was in Vicenza not too long ago, where two nice-looking young people came to me backstage. It was Pollicino and one of his little sisters, the child actors from fifteen years ago. How often in the course of a year—and how often in a career—is one able to sing such roles? That got to be too much, even for me. The problem is that this role really is a killer.
Nonetheless, in I plan to return to the Deutsche Oper in Berlin in both roles, as Otello and as Samson; both in new productions. I keep to what I can do best. To set a record? Artists respond to offers. People always ask: Why? But I do believe they speak for themselves. For I know what singers need from a conductor. This may also be a reason why singers are often dissatisfied with conductors.
When they know too little about singing as is the case with most , they do everything wrong. When they know too much about singing as is the case with very few , the singers do everything wrong.
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Things were similar for Domingo due to Leontyne Price, and in the case of the young Pavarotti because of Joan Sutherland. Does one need something like that as a tenor? Fact is that I had nothing of the sort. On stage, I have often rather had the feeling that a good mezzo soprano or a good baritone is important to a tenor. There are really great things to be sung together. This can be of greater significance to the course and the tenor of a performance than a famous soprano.
If you had made the change away from Erato early on- if you, for instance, had gone to Deutsche Grammophon, would your career have developed differently? I still grew up with vinyl discs, LPs. They were huge, and there was a sensuality to the touch. That was something luxurious.
What is it that gets lost for you?
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The sensual experience of the contact, of being in touch. Things are getting ever more anonymous and lonely for us. We used to call each other up on the phone. Also as far as opera is concerned? People could stay home, if their sole intent were to listen to music. In opera, everything revolves around immediacy, the directness of the singer-audience experience.
Between us, there is nothing other than the music. And out of this arises a cultural mandate, a mission. I admit, I have been wondering about that myself. Several years ago, some very friendly ladies came to me and asked whether I objected to a fan club. I suppose it's also a tenor thing. Do you have as many different role models as you have artistic disciplines?
I guard my role models jealously and, to be honest, do not like to talk about them. I have never named them, because I consider idols the root of almost every evil. They are the reason for all manner of fanaticism--including the political. Can you imagine some day giving up your career as a singer?
Every singer must live, must come to terms with this notion. I would call it quits, if I were to sing one evening of which I thought: There's no better way. Toward this point in time, I have been taking some small precautionary measures by way of those other areas in which I am actively involved. But I don't believe it will come to that all that soon. Pag in Zurich. He performed the Song to Lola so forcefully that his intent seemed the assertion of a claim rather than exuding charm.
Canio was even better suited to the Argentine tenor than Turiddu. Masterful was, to be sure, how he kept balancing theatrical play and menacing seriousness already as early as his warning about make-believe theater and life not being the same, something he conveyed to an audience but actually addressed to the unfaithful Nedda.
That has class and gives the impression of authenticity down to the last inch. His slight stagger as he exits the stage after the famous "Vesti la giubba" goes to the quick, yes even more than that, it is heart-rending. His charisma and the force of his interpretation reach full potential in the clothing of Canio, in impressive dramatic crescendo. The transition from play to reality is hardly noticeable with him. Cura endows him with that also and seems doubly lost in himself exactly because of his physical and vocal stage presence. Canio, in danger of losing his wife Nedda and nonetheless expected to perform in a comedy, a comedy which is about to become his personal tragedy.
This very same Canio is the clown Pagliaccio, behind whose back the smart-looking Arlecchino reels in his Columbina. In the end, two lie dead on stage right in front of the eyes of a shocked audience. Cura charged it with all the drama imaginable. Thus Cura downgraded everyone to supernumerary status-conductor Stefano Ranzani included…. Compared with Cura, the other singers had a hard time. Even his initial entrance onto the stage with Un grande spettacolo was already incredibly powerful and intense, followed by a keen and haunting interpretation of the cantabile Un tal gioco.
To the most famous scene of this short opera Recitar…Vesti la giubba ultimately, Cura gave shape with thrillingly poignant vividness and forcefulness. As impotent alcoholic, Cura was also a totally convincing actor. His cuckolded Canio is from the very start a ruined clown, a wreck, who drowns his disappointment that Nedda, whom he had picked up out of the street as an orphan at one time, has now turned away from him, in alcohol. La Voz de Asturias. Aurelio M. There is nothing anabolic for the larynx. It took del Monaco senior years to develop the voice that we know as his.
What is the problem? If to have a voice was enough in order to carve out a career in the past, what one has to have nowadays, thanks to the widespread hysteria the world is sunk in, is a perspicuity, an intellectual clarity that is fail-proof, foolproof, sure-shot. Right on, intelligence! Or worse yet, the degree of the ambition of those who are eating at your expense? Of course the factors you mention have a lot of influence on the length of a career. If soccer players had to run up and down fields of m instead of m so that the size of the stadiums could be doubled and thus lead to more tickets sold, these players would be burned-out and finished at the end of three years.
And what if the marathon were km instead of 42 so that the TV rights per minute would yield greater returns? Even if this goes far beyond the musicians themselves, let me say this: when the works we perform today were written, the sound quality of the instruments, above all of the wind section, was quite inferior. But today, a trombone is well-nigh a bazooka! The case of Marcelo Alvarez and the Teatro Real is well known. Instead, faced with incidents of favoritism shown by uncertain artistic directors towards certain theatrical agencies that make decisions for them.
But it is beside the point to stir that up, as the editorial page is tyrannical. Whoever is in the forefront at the head of an army gets the first shots. Geography has nothing to do with it. Those who do not have the courage to be out front get behind and wait. Solely the deed of sticking out your head on an everyday basis so as to bare your heart and soul and show yourself vulnerable merits respect.
Yet we must acknowledge that the politicians are the divos nowadays. Every day on the front page. They even give autographs! Is that why they govern with such distraction? In many countries, teaching activities of mine dedicated to young people are also ongoing.
fotograf o fotografi
Only in my adopted home Spain , now also my country by right of citizenship owing to my grandfather from Soriano, have I still not been invited to have an active role in society. A convincing success. Together they closed the first half with Norma; Cura used glasses to read in snatches from the score, something unusual in shows of this sort. After three rounds of bows and having presenting works not often heard at Campoamor, came the encores. Despite the sudden drop in temperature which forced some to leave early, the public generated its own heat so involved and enchanted were they with the beautiful music of the unforgettable evening.
Martha Porter. From Catalan - the rough guide. The big voice of the tenor does not leave anyone indifferent, neither does the way he gives all his energy and vitality in the firm commitment to portraying the characters he plays. Cura is a wild stage animal. The quick flip brought the first sustained applause. A showman to the marrow, Cura quickly broke from the tradition of these concerts, speaking directly to the audience and switching on the lights in the hall. The singer, conductor, composer and stage director knows that a concert in not simply singing one aria after another but an opportunity to create character and climax.
Otello , the workhorse that has brought him the greatest success, allowed him to do exactly that. The tenor shone his lyrical and dramatic power in the closing of Peralada. The charismatic Argentine tenor dazzled the audience at the end of a festival that emphasized outstanding quality of offerings that did not always get, especially those that risked the most, the expected response from the public.
Cura applied his stage presence and appealing acting skills in the service of a repertoire of works by Leoncavallo, Verdi, and Puccini. This expressive version extracted the first bravos [of the evening]. After a somewhat unvarying interpretation of the overture from Nabucco, Cura returned. He asked that the lights in the auditorium be turned on. And then came Otello. This opera is one of the hallmarks of his career.
But he did not yield the intensity with Puccini. Cura reappeared wondering where conductor Mario de Rose was. Canto a la testosterona fina. Xavier Pujol. El Pais. Because of this, veristic operas are so short. The male verismo aria is strong and manly; it needs a seasoned tenor who does not shrink from high notes, who can project strongly over the orchestral accompaniment and who conveys wholesale emotions. We have a Tenor. El Punt. Jordi Maluquer. Yesterday, in a performance of arias, he offered confirmation.
He conducts, he directs, and he knows how to get the audience in his pocket with a good kind of histrionics. The only other comment we can make about a concert that seduced us completely is that Cura has a tendency to run away with the power of his voice; he gives the color but the linearity of the song suffers. The final standing ovation by the audience demonstrated its satisfaction with and sincere love for this performer. The Argentine tenor Jose Cura poses after a press conference today that he gave at the Palacio de Cantabria summer during the recital that will offer tomorrow, for the programming of the 58th International Festival of Santander FIS.
Giulo Laguzzi will accompany him on piano. Cura stressed today that his recital of Argentine music is not pop music or tango, but rather works, in his view, that can be compared with the songs of Schubert or Schumann. Between next year and he plans to conduct three operas. The first will be in Germany, where he debuts in with a new production of Samson et Dalila as stage director, set designer and singer. By , he expects to direct a new Otello, which will be produced for a circuit of theaters in Italy, although he cannot yet reveal details of the project.
Also on his calendar is La Rondine by Puccini in the French city of Nancy, which Cura defines as an "experiment with young people" whom he will teach before they go on the opera stage. In this Rondine , he will do double duty as the production head, since he will be in charge of managing both stage and music. The tenor underlined that his work as composer, stage director and conductor is not relegating his talent as a singer to the background, but is rather enriching [his singing.
Cultura - As he explained at his press conference, he will offer a program [heard] for the first time in Spain. The repertoire is music from Argentina, but not traditional Argentine music like tango but rather Argentine chamber music, with elaborate piano accompaniments. Relationship with the FIS. In this respect, he thought it was good to exploit human relations with the festival more than merely the professional, since as a professional it is always necessary in the end to come to an agreement, because everything is very technical, but it is the human thing that is most difficult, in ways of seeing in life, in dreams, what is possible to cultivate.
In addition, he will make a circuit of Italian theaters with Otello in The program will also include a few sonnets by Pablo Neruda the tenor has set to music. The tenor announced yesterday that he will continue with the career as director and set designer he began last year with the premier of Un ballo in maschera at the Cologne Opera House. In October or November of next year he will direct and design Samson et Dalila in Germany and in intends to perform a new production of Otello in a circuit of theaters in Italy, a project for which he avoids giving details.
Off this project the Argentine tenor explains this is a cycle of a master class in which young singers will work on the staging of the opera. In this regard, he noted that reviews of his recent recital at the Festival de Peralada speak precisely to his work in other fields as well as his interpretations to suggest the singer had been enriched. He is often praised for insightful, intense and unforgettable interpretations, a fact that has made him one of the most popular tenors at opera houses the world over.
He has also more recently become known for his more or less unconventional concert performances. He is the first opera singer that has both sung and conducted simultaneously. Intimate and Sotte Voce , but a Real Character. In premiering his own music, he proved that he is not satisfied with being an opera star. He also made it quite clear again that he is a real character. He talks to the audience, makes jokes, tells stories and responds when they speak to him from the front orchestra seats.
In all those, he will design the set, in some, he will also sing and if not, he will be in the pit. Translation: Monica B. He also made it clear once more that he is a real character. He speaks to the audience, he makes jokes, he tells stories, and he responds to the audience when they speak to him from the stalls. Culture - The result was a success for the FIS because Cura gave Santander the opportunity to be able to experience something original and intimate from a unique voice [and artist] who is already preparing a new production of Samson et Dalila.
He has excelled in some opera roles, the two most notable without doubt are Otello and Samson. After having presented the work in other countries, he made their debut in Spain in our city at the FIS. He was accompanied on piano by Giulio Laguzzi. Besides these famous poems, Cura also performed other songs from composers from his homeland, like Hector Panizza, Carlos Lopez Buchardo, and Hilda Herrera.
However, the gamble convinced most who enjoyed the excellent voice of the tenor from Rosario. Moreover, since this was a special day, he offered his performances to all the victims of the Barajas accident that just one year ago killed people at the Madrid airport. The Argenta room rewarded him with bravos and ovations, but not enough noise to bring Cura back for an encore. In short, a nice evening that brought us to the phenomenon of Cura in all his dimensions.
Julien Beneteau. September 5 The tenor held public rehearsals yesterday morning, sometimes with caustic criticism of the young singers participating in his class. A concert of arias will be held tomorrow at the opera in Nancy.
A few people in the audience, swept away, applauded. The audience persisted. Us, we work. You watch.
The tenor is like that, massive, direct. When he gives instructions to Florent Mbia, the arch of his back makes him look like a bull ready to charge. Everyone learns from the different performances. The selections were made by ear. The cast? The young people who have made it through the class. What a treat! For those of us who do not speak French, Denise translated the French from several Masterclass videos. It takes a lot of time to translate, especially if you have only your ears to rely on, so we send a huge thank you to Canada! You are singing a love song and this is not a love song!
And listening to all the instruments and finding the motivations about which we would not have thought--and then being directed by somebody who truly knows the repertoire … well, that makes you grow. And then facing this big orchestra just overwhelmed me and it has done a lot of good to me. That is a luck, there are not many singers who will get the same chance.
Your wife is a blonde and you are a black. And this is a really great quality. Stafano Mazzoni definitely has connections. For the biblical hero with the precious hair, the Argentine tenor who, not to waste time, is also a conductor, composer, and director has charisma and power — as much physical as vocal. Besides, he has performed it almost every year since assuming the role at Covent Garden through Bologna last year, which is also the production that will be staged—with necessary renovations—in Country Hall Ethias, on the Sart-Tilman heights.
But I do not like what he is, even if he is a character in the Bible — but then not all the characters in the Bible are saints! This guy is rather negative, a revolutionary in the beginning, which is pretty nice, but what he does in the name of God, which unfortunately is very modern, is less nice. It is a story we see written daily in the newspapers and I do not think only of Allah, or even religions, but also anything which imposes ideas by force, whether in the name of money, oil, or whatever else.
Cura has no shortage of ideas on the matter, since he will be staging the work while singing it, too in Karlsruhe next year. One might be surprised to see Cura, a tenor at the top of his art, diversify to conducting and directing and he happens to do both on some nights when at 47 years of age he is not yet force to think about his retraining.
By no means. These are trades I know — I studied conducting before I started singing — and where, without claiming to be the best, I am not doing too badly. There are better, but there are worse. I usurp nothing — no one asks me to build a hospital or pilot a plane! Le Soir. Michele Friche. Wednesday, September 16, With his strong physique, his Samson could break the columns of the temple of the Philistines with a flick! But with the crisis is Argentina, the difficulty of starting off in this business, I needed to leave to eat. One of my teachers at the university advised me to learn to sing.
But I had a voice, generous. At 28, the young Argentine musician took control for good and for the most part on his own. After several years of suffering — that gives you a beautiful shell—I entered the profession, in Europe. The one who says he is a wild rebel is also a stage animal. Finally, I am richer in memories of the stage than off. On stage, I feel at home. But I learn to disconnect quickly. There was no way for me to become a ghost of an actor who trails his roles romantically and finishes in drugs, alcohol, suicide.
We, the singers, we do a job, one with some privileges, but one that remains a job, life being something else, a wife, children, and it is much more complicated. Even with the best technique, the best parachute in the world, it is still singing and it is still jumping into the void — and sometimes the parachutist is killed. The singer, as a human being, is not infallible.
A valve to amuse, to help find feelings, to reflect. We are instruments to recreate the music the great masters have created. To grind down art education because there is in crisis, this is rubbish. A society that has a full stomach but no culture, sooner or later it falls. But if you take history, three thousand years later, nothing has changed! We continue to kill in the name of religion, whatever the name of god invoked. When I started singing Samson, I fell into the trap of the prophet.
The text of the Bible is terrible; it's a horror movie full of hatred and blood. In the second act, Samson falls. Behind the man was a woman, Dalila. There are still people capable of endangering the destiny of a country for sex. In the third act, he asks his god for his strength, to become the murderer he was again, a terrorist today. Nothing changed. That's the great lesson of Samson! Those who live for the music can get it out — phonetically — but if like me you try to live every word, then we do not sing in a language we have not mastered.
Even if I do not pronounce French perfectly, I know what I say and that is essential for an actor. Meanwhile, in he will stage his own Samson. The Country Hall is spacious and inviting, certainly, but unrewarding, and not on the acoustic level, as one might think but on the visual. In addition to limited stage equipment, the room provides no gradation in the stalls and the distances between the stage and the audience is enormous.
It was enough to evaluate the choice of director, who gave the Hebrew people traditional religious attributes, except for Samson, who was depicted as a contemporary adventurer sometimes with his prayer shawl , and deployed the Philistines in brocades, silks and odd hats caught somewhere between Orientalism and Futurism, and who clouds the issue: the revolutionary image of Samson is duplicated by a child throwing stones and who is soon joined by the entire group of Hebrews the action is in Gaza. The ballet remains, in this context, another oddity.
The Russian mezzo Julia Gertseva Dalila has a superb voice, at once powerful and brilliant, and a perfect physical appearance but, contrary to what is stated in the program, she needs to move out of her reserve, in sexiness and cruelty, to match the fiery temperament of Cura. Even without seeing anything, we follow everything. September 21, , The acoustics without amplification did not find ideal balance of orchestra and voices.
In this vast area, it is difficult to feel involved with what is happening on the stage, despite the quality of the actors and Patrick Davin in particular. The first guest conductor of the opera has the necessary skills to revitalize this orchestra, to make it sound better, and to give nice attention to the singers. Thanks to him to have offered us the sensual delight lacking in the Dalila of Julia Gertseva, with a beautiful figure and a large mezzo voice, though occasionally rough in the lower register, but who, on opening night, displayed nothing of the irresistible seducer.
Cura unleashed in the third act, painfully, tragically. The characterization is more realistic among the Hebrews, with touches of updating Samson puts his jacket on the shoulders of a boy who threw a stone against the Philistines ….. I know how I feel when somebody returns from a journey and I'm burning to read every detail. Well, I just came back from Liege 4 hours ago and have a lot to share.
Remember that this was a performance plus the annual fan club meeting. But I have learnt in the past that when he decides to sing, he can do it! So my fear became a little bit less. And of course he did a good job- when he appears, everything is forgotten and the magic begins. I like this staging. There are a lot of very deep emotional and intense moments that all human feelings share--deepest desperation, triumph, hate, love, weakness, brotherliness, fear, disdainfulness We estimated that there have been at least people in the audience and the conditions for them would have been very different depending of the seat they had.
I was sitting at one of the "better" seats in the middle of the 5th row in the first performance and didn't hear or see very well. The music from the orchestra ascended so it didn't reach the ears of the parquet floor listeners very well. I decided to look for a better place acoustically and optically for the second performance upstairs- and behold- it was so much better!
So, we all from Europe can see him often backstage and should not grumble At the beginning of the second performance there was no announcement that he was still sick and it was heartbreaking emotionally what the ensemble afforded. They work so naturally and convincingly together- I'm very curious about their Carmen in Munich in 2 weeks Maybe because of the struggles in the last performance- everything seemed to be easy and floating.
He decided what the conductor had to do with the orchestra, following his singing lines- wonderful- I liked it And I had many moments when I felt the tears coming up, as if I was in a strange wonder world. Why can this exceptionally gifted actor, singer and man always transport the feelings in this intense, direct way!?
After the much to short performance always, for us! Van Zuylen very much. Hi Kira,. I myself could not help falling into it throughout this very paragraph! Sometimes the phoneme rhythm is sparse though the stress rhythm may not be. If rhythm is not noticeably salient in an idiom although it cannot be entirely absent, not least because of the stress rhythms , the idiom will owe its popularity chiefly to some other rhetorical device antithesis, imagery, etc.
This, of course, does not imply that many of those given below do not employ those also. Shakespeare was especially fond of the combination of rhythm and antithesis one might say, more precisely, similarity of sound and difference of meaning appearing together in a kind of counterpoint. King Richard the Third , IV, iv, Worthwhile noting that the principle is as active in our time as ever it was.
Groucho Marx, unsurprisingly, exploits it in this neat spoonerism compare it with the Richard the Third quotation :. If you should feel able to acquaint yourself with the International Phonetic Alphabet not too difficult a task , you can experiment by writing some of the entries in that script. You will become alert to hidden rhythms, but take care that you do not take the repetition of a printed letter, whether vowel or consonant, as a reliable sign of the repetition of a sound e.
One aspect of word-rhythm, one ever-present but not explored here, is that of metrical repetitions, the patterns of syllabic stress that marks our speech. The topic is explored in my forthcoming book on the application of the themes of my books on narrative and the ethical aspects of language to the teaching of English. For theoretical exploration of the human connection between rhythm, the Statement, narrative, metaphor, rhetoric, etc.
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