A happy birthday to our dear Facebook friend, Nelly Miricioiu, who represents a style of singing mostly absent today. She was born on Mar.31, 1952 in Roumania, which seems to be a country where the 'air" produces some of the most exciting artists(Guess who else!)

Category:general -- posted at: 7:42pm EDT

La Boheme  Two Debuts

On Sept.29, 1965 both Mirella Freni and Gianni Raimondi made their Met debuts in La Boheme,under Fausto Cleva. The tape is a bit distant in sound, but it was a special performance and I know that you will enjoy it. Others in the cast were as follows:

Heidi Krall             Musetta

Calvin Marsh        Marcello

John Macurdy       Colline

Clifford Harvuot    Schaunard

Lorenzo Alvary      Benoit

Andrea Velis          Alcindoro

Direct download: Boheme_Freni_deb.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 7:34pm EDT

Frida Leider, Vol.2

More superb singing from the great Frida Leider. As I had said, sometimes a great singer "escapes" notice, owing to all there is,but here we have some more excerpts from her repertory.

1. Oberon  "Ozean,du Ungeheuer

2. The Wagner Wesendonck Songs

3. Ariadne  "Est gibt ein Reich"

4. Don Giovanni  "Or sai chi l'onore

5. Schubert: Erlkonig and Auf dem Wasser zu singen

6. Schumann   Widmung

7.Tristan und Isolde   Liebestod

Direct download: Leider2.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 7:48pm EDT

Compilation 11

I know you enjoy my pot-pourris and i hope you will appreciate this one as well:

1. Meta Seinemeyer        Tristan und Isolde        "Liebestod"    (so sad,she died at 33.)

2. Cesare Siepi                  L'Italiana in Algeri       "Le femmine d'Italia"

3. Diane Soviero                Risurrezione (Alfano)   "Giunge il treno"

4. Steber/DelMonaco       Fanciulla act two duet (with opened cut, which I love.)

5. Stella/Guelfi                   Aida Nile Duet   (They are superb)

6. Rise Stevens                   Orfeo                   "Che faro"

7. Luisa Tetrazzini              Semiramide       "Bel raggio"

8. Richard Tucker                 Andrea Chenier      "Improvisso"

9. Pavarotti/Millo                 Ballo Love duet

10.Leonard Warren              Forza Cabaletta (He was about to sing this when he died.I will never forget it.)

11. Zinka Milanov                 Forza          "La vergine degli angeli  (1965 concert.)

12.Giuseppe di Stefano       Carmen      "Flower Song"

13. Magda Olivero                Manon Lescaut      "In quelle trine morbide"

14.Titta Ruffo                         Pagliacci Prologue  (a force of nature.)

15. Beverly Sills                     Tabarro aria (her only Trittico)

16.Riccardo Stracciari           Traviata   "Di Provenza "  (Charlie's favorite baritone)

Direct download: 11th_Comp.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:43pm EDT

Sergei Lemeshev 1902-1977

I love this guy!!!! He is one of my five all-time favorite tenors, of those I never saw live. I find the Russian "high vocal placement' so appealing, Here he sings (In Russian) arias from:

Fra Diavolo, Huguenots, Martha, Luisa Miller, Lohengrin, Faust, Mignon, Roussalka (Dargomijsky),

The Demon (Rubenstein), Onegin (act one), May Night (2 arias), Onegin (Kooda,kooda), Pique Dame

Here is some material I fouind interesting about "rivalry."                         (71 Min.)


Lemeshev’s talent, artistry, acting skills and conspicuous charm very quickly made him a public idol. Almost all his performances during the 1930s and 1940s were accompanied by crowds of fans followed him through the streets, spending days and nights near his house. [1]

While Lemeshev was one of the leading tenors of the Bolshoi Theatre, he was admired by female fans, who were jokingly called "lemeshistki." The theatre lobby was a venue for scuffles between the "lemeshistki" and the "kozlovityanki" (female fans of Lemeshev's rival Ivan Kozlovsky).[2]

Additionally, the film "The Musical Story" (1941) [3] in which he played the main role, brought him the Stalin prize, and even more widespread furore and fame all over the USSR.

Direct download: Lemeshev.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:49pm EDT

Germaine Lubin 1890-1979

A great French soprano,who had a sad experience as to possible collaboration with the Nazis during the war, but acquitted.(I have her own words below.).

She sings arias from: Tannhauser,Siegfried,Walkure,Tristan und Isolde,Freischutz, Sigurd (Reyer), Tosca, and songs as follows:

Chopin: Tristesse     Schubert: Erlkonig      Faure:  Au bord de l'eau

Debussy:  Beau soir and Je tremble en voyant ton visage.                 (55 min.)

For her part, Lubin denied all ties to Nazi Germany, and grew deeply bitter over her treatment at the hands of the French government. She once said that

I have suffered an enormous injustice. They curtailed my career by ten years — my own people! The fact is that I knew some of the Germans when they came to Paris during the occupation. This gave my enemies the chance to satisfy their envy … If I saw the Germans in Paris —and they had been more than kind to me— it was to save my compatriots. It was my way of serving my country at that particular moment. Nobody knows how many prisoners I had released … When I spent three years in prison, they confiscated my château at Tours and my possessions. Did anyone bother to ask me why I did not accept Winifred Wagner’s invitations to sing in Germany during the occupation? But my trial was a complete vindication: I was completely cleared. Yes, they gave back most of what they had taken …[5]

Direct download: Lubin.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:08pm EDT

Here is one of Sam's great roles!  (Sam,put a shirt on!!)

Category:general -- posted at: 8:08pm EDT

Category:general -- posted at: 8:05pm EDT

It was our first Bolena rehearsal in 1970.This young guy, born Mar.28, 1942, opened his mouth and we heard for the first time someone who would become one of the great singers of our time.Sam always spoke of Treigle,and he ended up inheriting many of his great roles. We sang in Hoffmann,Bolena,Barber,etc..and i am so happy to have known him all these years..,Bravo,Sam!!!!!

Category:general -- posted at: 8:03pm EDT

The Greatest Chenier I ever saw!!!!

Do you think it was easy spending  NINE DOLLARS on a box seat on Mar.5, 1960? Well,it turned out to be worth it, as the incredible cast of Milanov,Bergonzi,Bastianini, and our beloved contralto, Belen Amparan (Madelon) gave a sensational performance, conducted by Fausto Cleva. It was also a sad time for us, as the night before,we had witnessed the untimely stage death of Leonard Warren. At least this phenomenal performance took us temporarily out of our sadness.

Here are some special notes that might help you to pinpoint some of the reasons we were so thrilled:

1. Bergonzi's amazing sense of phrasing. The ultimate example of "slancio," where the man was a vocal GOD to us, as he has been for so long.

2. Zinka's double attack on the act two pianissimo on "ora soave" and the "U" vowel on the word "sventura"in the third act aria, which was one of the examples of her brilliant placement.

3. Bastianini's remarkable "Nemico della patria," offering us at least another great baritone sound, having sadly lost another.

4. Belen Amparan's true contralto tones. We loved her so much.

5. The stunning last act duet (in the high key) and in particular, Zinka's "Abbracciami, Baciami, AMOOOOOORE" which to this day I retain in my mind.

      Listening to this, I again told myself I am glad I was there for shows like this, and again repeat that there is NOTHING in this repertory today (at least not at the Met) that can compare.

Direct download: Chenier2_1960.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 5:45pm EDT

More Great Music

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