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About papsrus

  • Birthday 06/22/1957

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  1. Recently: Bellini's "Norma" and the rarely performed "Tiefland" by the apparently rarely heard Eugen d'Albert at the Sarasota Opera House. For the latter I abandoned my usual front row balcony perch and plopped down in a seat second row, center. I now have a new favorite seat. Norma was fine, soprano was excellent, the rest of the gang seemed to me to be a slight step down, and the staging was somewhat static throughout. No problem closing the old peepers now and again and sitting back to just listen with this one. Tiefland was excellent -- wonderfully melodic score; the singers and orchestra were excellent and engaging all around; ample characters coming and going to keep the performance moving along at a nice pace. The performance was the season finale, and was being recorded for "possible" release, so a DVD or YouTube of the opera may show up at some point. This was just the third production of Tiefland in the U.S. and now that the opera company has finished its 28-year Verdi cycle, I'm hoping they continue to bring lesser-performed titles to the stage in future seasons.
  2. Grateful that his heirs saw fit to release a healthy chunk of Celibidache’s live Munich recordings from this period after his death. Given his steadfast opposition to recorded music, he must have known these recordings were being made night after night and would be released one day. Curious. While he may not have cared for opera singers, he did love him some Wagner — Parsifal’s Good Friday; Tristan und Isolde Prelude; Tannhauser Overture; Sigfried Idyll, etc. And he conducted his fair share of sacred music as well — the requiems of Mozart, Verdi and Faure among others, and Bach’s Mass in B minor. All preserved in those spiffy box sets. So not all singing was bad for him. He did visit the US with his Munich band at some point in the 80s as well. My dad recalls going to a performance at the Kennedy Center but can’t recall the music performed. He does remember the orchestra members marching onto the stage with what he describes as almost military precision prior to the concert. Thanks for posting the link.
  3. Spent the past two Sundays with some friends watching the Das Rheingold and Die Walkure from the Met's 2012 Robert Lepage production. Siegfried and Gotterdammerung still to go, but I think we're going to take a week or two off to digest. Some extraordinary singers here, including the incredible Bryn Terfel as Wotan (perhaps the most demanding role in Die Walkure, at least), Deborah Voigt as Brunnhilde and Jonas Kauffman as Siegmund -- all incredible singers and all-in in these roles. So, it takes some commitment to absorb this music/performance in one sitting -- one part of the cycle at a time, of course. It's emotionally draining and exhilarating at the same time. You feel spent and invigorated afterward. But more than that, it is just so damn musical -- the orchestration is exquisite, always present and intricately woven into the singers, you're always drawn to it (how can you not be!) but it's never overbearing or overwhelming the voices. The orchestra and voices are truly equal parts here, essential to one another and no doubt Levine is due great credit for that. I'm coming around to the view that watching a filmed version of something like this, as opposed to experiencing it live, has some distinct advantages -- specifically the closeup shots of the singers that simply cannot be duplicated live (unless you're in the front row, which has it's own disadvantages in the opera house). But the overall thing I wanted to convey here is that while diving into this can be intimidating for anyone, it is intensely musical on so many levels. So musical.
  4. B & B & B & B -- Brandy and benedictine and Barenboim and Bruckner, No. 7 with Staatskapelle Berlin
  5. Geminiani -- Concerti Grossi, Vol 1 -- Op 2 No. 1-6; Op 3 No. 1-4 (naxos) Capella Istropolitana with Jarslav Krecek conducting
  6. Jean Rondeau -- Vertigo Harpsichordist Rondeau explores the operatic / stage music of Jean-Philippe Rameau and Pancrace Royer. ... Beautiful.
  7. The pleasure's mine. ... Trust you'v recovered from the tour and all's well.
  8. Bach -- Dynastie (family concertos, JS, WF, CPE, JC) Jean Rondeau Rondeau's "moments of metronomic freedom," as one reviewer put it, infuse these concertos by JS Bach and sons with excitement, personality and ... fun. Harpsichord out front with violin, viola, cello, contrabass and bassoon. I'd say if there's a recording that could turn someone on to the harpsichord who otherwise might be a bit leery of the instrument, this fits the bill. The only slight criticism I might have is that there are times where Rondeau gets overpowered by the other instruments, but that's just the nature of the beast, I suppose.
  9. Geminiani -- Violin Sonatas Op. 4, vol.2 Liana Mosca violin; Antonio Mosca cello; Luca Pianca archlute; Giorgio Paronuzzi harpsichord
  10. Jeff Crompton Trio -- "Magic Word" Sits right in that free bop sweet spot. Excellent. Jeffcrom and his bandmates hit a home run. Review here.
  11. If you have a chance to catch Jeff Crompton's trio Saturday night in Atlanta, I would recommend it.

    See link for quick review.


  12. Went to Jeff's St. Petersburg concert the other night. ... I think I had a big old dumb grin on my face the entire time as this waterfall of free bop-ish music washed over me. Incredible energy from a really talented trio and Jeff is no joke on the sax / clarinet. Man can bring it. Almost all original tunes with a little Ornette thrown in. ... Scooped up a copy of Jeff's latest CD with this band, "Magic Word," which I'd heartily recommend. Not only is the music rewarding but you'll be supporting one (three) of the hard-working musicians who make it happen. If you have a chance to catch these guys in Atlanta on Saturday night (Hutch?), do it. Thanks for the music, Jeff ...
  13. Alexander Borodin -- Chamber Music String Quartets Nos. 1 & 2; Piano Quintet in C Minor; Piano Trio in D Major; String Quintet in F Minor; Sextet in D Minor; Trio in G Major Moscow Trio & String Quartet
  14. Haha ... oops. Nonetheless, Great recording. NP: Beethoven String Quartet No. 13 Tokyo String Quartet
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