You have heard this before,but I must tell you that it is an example of some of the most exciting singing you'll ever hear!!!!

Category:general -- posted at: 12:05am EDT


DO NOT PEEK before you listen!! Here are the 15 Flower Songs from Carmen (61 min.)

If you guess them all, I will send you my entire Fischer-Dieskau collection:

  Roberto Alagna, Peter Anders, Fernand Ansseau, Vladimir Atlantov, Enrico Caruso, Franco Corelli, Raoul Jobin, Antonio Cortis, Libero de Luca, Mario del Monaco, Placido Domingo, Beniamino Gigli, Jussi Bjoerling, Giuseppe di Stefano, and Nicolai Gedda.

Direct download: Flower_Song-1.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 7:54pm EDT

This is a staging of the Maria Stuarda Confrontation Scene as per the Bette Davis/Joan Crawford film, "Whatever Happened to Baby Jane." I wrote Joyce di Donato to tell her that in the coming Met Stuardas I do not think she should follow this staging.

Category:general -- posted at: 2:44pm EDT

   If my beloved Renata had ever had a fight with me, and used the kind of chest voice she uses on "Tre assi e un paio," I would have run screaming out the door. She scared us to of the many great "Tebaldi moments."

Category:general -- posted at: 2:17pm EDT


To all of you great opera lovers all over the globe, I wish you a most HAPPY NEW YEAR and many thanks for your undying support. You make my life so happy all year long!

From Charlie

Category:general -- posted at: 1:02pm EDT

Simone Boccanegra from Naples, 1986

 The very great Cesare Siepi at age 63 in a superb Simone Boccanegra that features Renato Bruson (still singing these days at 77), Ileana Cotrubas, Taro Ichihara, and Enrico Serra (Paolo.) The conducter is Gabor Otvos. (71 min.)

Direct download: Simone_Bruson.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:07pm EDT

Carlo Bergonzi Recital,London 1992

The great tenor,who "teaches a vocal lesson" when he sings. This is a 68 year old man who is a legend. I heard him at 78, and he was just as wonderful. He is not in the best of health these days at 88, and I hope he feels better soon. We love him so much.

Direct download: Bergonzi_Lon.1992.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:54pm EDT

Renata Tebaldi in Boheme at Parma

Facing a tough audience at Parma in 1962, after there had been some altercations, Tebaldi sang a great Mimi, and saved the day. Others in the cast are:  Renato Cioni,EnzoSordello, Silvana Zanolli, Giorgio Taddeo (Colline), and Otello Borgonovo (Schaunard) under Arturo Basile.  (64min.)

Direct download: Tebaldi_Parma_Mimi.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:35am EDT

Stride La Vampa-1

  I have just received a series of wonderful compilations of various arias, terrific for your opera parties, where you can give prizes if you wish if people can guess some or all of the selec tions. I did not do a narration here, but here are the mezzos doing the Trovatore "Stride la Vampa":

Giuseppina Zinetti, Nell Rankin, Irene Dalis, Blanche Thebom, Miriam Pirazzini, Elena Nicolai, Oralia Dominguez, Bruna Castagna, Ebe Stignani, Irene Minghini-Cattaneo, and Fedora Barbieri. (29 min.)

I hope this series is enjoyable to you.   My best for a happy New year


Direct download: Stride_One.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:10pm EDT

Wszystkiego najlepszego z okazji urodzin which means HAPPY BIRTHDAY to our beloved Piotr for Dec.28. How fortunate the opera world is to be able to enjoy his great singing!!!

Category:general -- posted at: 7:34pm EDT

Rigoletto Part Two

All fixed!!!!! Here is part 2 of the Rigoletto

Direct download:
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:09am EDT

A Great Rigoletto,Part One

Part One of a 1972 Rigoletto with a stellar cast under Richard Bonynge. Featured are Sherrill Milnes,Luciano Pavarotti,Joan Sutherland, Ruggero Raimondi, and Batyah Godfrey.  (55 min.)

Direct download: Rig.Pav.1a.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:45pm EDT

I think if we counted up all the tears that Puccini,born Dec.23, 1858, has provided to the opera world, we might have another "Pacific Ocean." Bless forever what he has given us!!!!

Category:general -- posted at: 9:52pm EDT

   Music for the Holiday Season (announced), as sung by famous artists. I know you will enjoy the selections and I wish you all the happiest holiday season!! (62 min.)

Direct download: Xmas_2012.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:30pm EDT

At 66, still able to thrill us! Gruberova born Dec.22, 1946. A bit eccentric vocal production,but the way she gets to the wild..That kind of "scoop." One of the most adored singers!!!!!

Category:general -- posted at: 12:08pm EDT

 One of my saddest days, and a sad day for opera lovers, was Dec.19, 2004, when we lost our beloved Renata Tebaldi. My memories are still so vivid of her incredible singing, and the relationship we had over the years, with those "birthday phone calls' I made to her in the later years. The love she spread on stage and off stage was something none of us "kids" could ever forget, and we will think of her fondly for the rest of our lives.

Category:general -- posted at: 12:13pm EDT

  Born on Dec.19, 1863, Milka Ternina was the teacher of my beloved Zinka Milanov, who just texted me and said, "I VAS BETTER!!!"

Category:general -- posted at: 7:36pm EDT

Birgit Nilsson in Recitals

The miraculous Birgit Nilsson is heard in recitals from Australia and New York. Selections are announced on the podcast. I do not believe ANYONE in opera history could produce tones like her!!! (70 glorious minutes.)

Direct download: Nilsson_Recitals.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:38pm EDT

Let us pause for a moment or two and think of the horrendous tragedy that occured this week in the school in Connecticut. Even if I was not a teacher and loved kids the way I do, it is just mind-boggling to think of what occurred, and we should spend a moment of reflection to remember the poor little kids and the teachers who are no long with us physically, but will always be in spirit.

Category:general -- posted at: 2:56pm EDT

Not as appreciated as i feel she should be, Raina Kabaiwanska was born on Dec.15, 1934. The feeling, the style, the love of the vocal line are special,if not a great tone. I really recommend you watch some more Youtube videos.

Category:general -- posted at: 2:51pm EDT

Dec.15, 1910..(Some say May 15),is the birthday of the SENSATIONAl Giulietta Simionato, who,in this clip, shows why she is revered as one of the greatest singers of all time. Sorry she did not make it to 100.

Category:general -- posted at: 2:46pm EDT

Angelo Lo Forese at 90!!!!  IN KEY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Category:general -- posted at: 1:39am EDT

Crabby jaded Charlie found a marvelous new soprano at Aida last night.She is Liudmyla Monastryska, possessor of a gorgeous and rich voice, with a brilliant top range and lovely pianissimi. I bravoed all night, and I think she was truly superb. Here is a sample.

Category:general -- posted at: 2:14pm EDT

Not a good day for divas. Gallina was a very famous artist and we hear her last scene of Onegin with Benjamin Luxon. Some straight tones,but a very great star!!!!!!   Never to be forgotten!!!!

Category:general -- posted at: 9:13pm EDT

  When she entered in Rosenkavalier act Three, the stage GLITTERED. It was a gorgeous ethereal voice and we remember her for what she did for all of us as a great artist.  Rest in Peace!

Category:general -- posted at: 8:15pm EDT

 Born Dec.11, 1892, Giacomo Lauri-Volpi sings a "Nessun Dorma' that is as thrilling as one could expect!!!!! I wish we had one tenor like this today.

Category:general -- posted at: 8:10pm EDT

Remember that lovable film about Verdi's "Casa di riposo" for old singers, some of whom can still sing? Sarah Scuderi was the STAR of the film, and she was born on Dec.11, 1906. What a loving tribute to singers of the past who might not have the finances to live a luxurious retiremen t. This is so gorgeous!!!!

Category:general -- posted at: 10:55pm EDT

The marvelous Sondra Radvanovsky is singing the Met Ballo today; she possess one of the most brilliant voices I ever heard, but you MUST hear her live, because she has a kind of resonance in the house that sounds like a "mike is in her throat." I once told her some tones were "Isolde tones." Here is a clip rom her Chicago Ballo.

Category:general -- posted at: 3:29pm EDT

Carmen with Shirley Verrett

 The late Shirley Verrett, one of my all-time favorite artists, appears as Carmen in this Rome 1967 performance under Georges Pretre. The superb Australian tenor, Albert Lance, is the Don Jose, with Robert Massard as Escamillo.  (70 min.)

Direct download: Carmen_Verrett.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:22pm EDT

Tosca With Zeani,Domingo

Highlights from a 1975 Barcelona Tosca under Giuseppe Morelli, with Virginia Zeani, Placido Domingo, and Piero Francia. Why don't more people realize how great she is?? Well,you've heard this before.  (70 min.)k

Direct download: Tosca_Zeani2.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:33am EDT

  DIOS MIO!!!!!!  My friends (including Virginia Zeani) heard Boheme in Florida last night and went NUTS over this guy!!!  This is a fabulous voice and i hope we hear much more of him.. BRAVISSIMO!!!!

Category:general -- posted at: 8:33pm EDT

    My favorite part of my favorite opera!! I had mentioned that a few years ago Dolora Zajick asked me to give a "Handelmanian" class for her young students; she has a project with young singers, trying to bring back the kind of singing so missing today. Note how she sings the end of this scene with incredible abandon. I will see her as Amneris in two weeks. Note she takes the high B that usually only Aida takes toward the end. She has FUN!!!!

Category:general -- posted at: 11:50am EDT

  Not just Cavalleria Rusticana!! Mascagni wrote such gorgeous music...This scene from his Piccolo Marat is just amazing. Virginia Zeani, Umberto Borso, and a loud prompter perform. The audience actually made them repeat this whole duet!!!!!

Category:general -- posted at: 11:14am EDT

Verdi's "Napuko"...(well,sort of.)

  Just enjoy these marvelous scenes from an opera written by Giuseppe Verdi, who made his fame at the premiere. However, not all performances are up to his standards. If you are a basso, I suggest you do not attempt to learn Zaccaria with this recording.  (16 wonderful minutes.)

Direct download: Napuko2.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:15pm EDT

Kirsten Flagstad Sings Wagner and Strauss

 The sensational Kirsten Flagstad is heard in the World Premiere of Strauss' Four Last Songs from 1950 under Wilhelm Furtwaengler  in London.She is then heard in three Strauss songs: Befreit, Allerseelen, and Caecilie, from San Francisco in 1950 under Merolla.

She is joined by Set Svanholm in Wagner Scenes from The Flying Dutchman, Lohengrin, Tristan und Isolde, and Die Meistersinger, from 1949 also under Gaetano Merolla.   (70 min.)

Direct download: Flagstad_Strauss-Wag..mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:04pm EDT

 Carreras was born on Dec.5, 1946. In his prime it was a glorious voice, one of the greatest in opera;yes,he did push the voice into heavier roles and even before the illness he was having problems, but for a time he was a true sensation, and he came thrugh a serious illness with great dignity and amazing courage.

Category:general -- posted at: 7:56pm EDT

Othalie Graham

  I always like to "spread the word' about exciting young artists. Here is info.on Othalie Graham....A great singer..and GORGEOUS!!!!

Canadian-American Soprano Othalie Graham is critically acclaimed throughout North America. As Turandot, the Boston Globe says her “timbre and power were thrilling - steely ring from top to bottom - and her path from imperiousness to passion was convincing.” Of a recent performance as Tosca, the San Francisco Chronicle praised her “high-powered blend of musical assurance and theatrical temperament. Singing the role for the first time, Graham displayed a potent and secure soprano that soared effortlessly through the role. Most impressive was her blend of delicacy and sheer muscle, which often combined forces within the space of a single phrase...her rendition of ‘Vissi d’arte’ was a heartbreaker.”

Emerging into the Wagnerian repertoire, Ms. Graham’s notable roles include Senta in Der Fliegender Holländer, Isolde in Tristan und Isolde, Brünnhilde and Sieglinde in Die Walküre, and Elisabeth in Tannhäuser. Other prominent roles include the title role in Elektra, Lady Macbeth in Macbeth, Leonora in Fidelio, Amelia in Un Ballo in Maschera, Leonora in La Forza del Destino, Ariane in Ariane et Barbe-Bleue, Serena in Porgy and Bess, and Santuzza in Cavalleria Rusticana.

Recent engagements include the title role in Turandot with Arizona Opera, Michigan Opera Theatre, Opera Columbus, Opera Delaware, Utah Festival Opera, Connecticut Grand Opera, and Sacramento Opera; Odabella in Attila with Sarasota Opera; the title role of Aida for the inaugural performance of the Istanbul International Opera Festival; Leonora in Il Trovatore with Utah Festival Opera; the title role in Tosca with Festival Opera; and the title role in Elektra at Philadelphia’s Academy of Vocal Arts. In the current 2010-2011 season and beyond, engagements include the title role of Turandot with the Vancouver Opera and Pensacola Opera, Minnie in La Fanciulla del West at the Nashville Opera, Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 and Turandot excerpts in concert with the Washington Chorus at the Kennedy Center, and Isolde in Tristan und Isolde with the Young Musicians Foundation Orchestra in California.

Concert highlights include a New York recital debut with the Liederkranz Society after winning its annual competition; a Wagner concert co-sponsored by the Wagner Society of Washington D.C. featuring Brünnhilde’s Immolation Scene from Götterdämmerung and Isolde’s Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde; Brünnhilde excerpts from Die Walküre for the L’Opera de Montreal gala; the title role in Turandot with Boston’s Chorus Pro Musica, the Westfield Symphony Orchestra, and the Harrisburg Symphony; Elijah with Bryn Terfel and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir; a featured appearance with Eve Queler at the Dahesh Museum of Art; as well as opera galas for Pacific Opera Victoria, Vancouver Opera, and Canada’s Oakville Symphony.

Ms. Graham was the first-place winner of the 2010 Gerda Lissner International Vocal Competition in the Wagner Division; the first-place winner of the 2005 Joyce Dutka Competition; a recipient of the prestigious Sullivan Foundation Grant for 2005; and the first-place winner in the Wagner Division of the 2009 Liederkranz Competition. In Canada, her many awards and honors include the coveted Jean Chalmers prize in the Canadian Music Competition, winner of the Edward Johnson Competition, and first place in the Jeunes Ambassadeurs Lyriques Competition.

She is a graduate of the Academy of Vocal Arts.


Category:general -- posted at: 11:31pm EDT

 Have you ever seen this adorable 1932 clip of the great Tetrazzini singing with Caruso??I think it is PRECIOUS!!!!!!

Category:general -- posted at: 10:55pm EDT


Here is a comparison podcast of some wonderful mezzos and contraltos singing the Ulrica Scene from Verdi's "Un Ballo in Maschera." The singers,in order, are:

Bruna Castagna, Grace Bumbry, Jean Madeira, Susanne Resmark, Marian Anderson, Ewa Podles, Giulietta Simionato, Ebe Stignani, Regina Resnik, Fedora Barbieri, and last (and least), Sylvia Sawyer (66 minutes)

Direct download: Ulrica.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:05pm EDT

Just listen to the section beginning "Coraggio" in the Vespri aria..That tells it ALL! The exciting attacks, the intensity, the verve....something unheard today!!!!

Category:general -- posted at: 10:19am EDT

Some artists can "read the telephone directory" and make a fabulous impression. The late Maria Callas, born Dec.2 (or 3?), 1923, was such an artist. We all know of her flaws and her stormy life, but her legacy will live forever in the hearts of true music-lovers.

Category:general -- posted at: 11:33pm EDT

OK friends....tell us what is "different" about this rendition....(Hint: Get a pitchpipe.)

Category:general -- posted at: 12:23am EDT

Another Callas' clip for her birthday.This was from one of the last recitals (with Di Stefano).Note she has to sing more chest voice...It is so sad...One of the greats at the end, but the feeling will never fade!!!!!.

Category:general -- posted at: 7:29pm EDT


More Great Music

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