"Art is a lie that tells the truth" -- Pablo Picasso
The Seraphim must be from her younger days! Before I ever heard her. This is an excellent example of Baroque singing even if it is with modern instruments!(I'm picky!) La Stupenda indeed! She sounds so young!!! I know that she wasn't that young because she didn't sound like that until her husband started working with her.Thanks, Doug.
Brava Joan, brava!And a thousand thank yous...!
One of my mom's faves (Dame Joan, and Bubbles Silverman! aka Beverly Sills, also OBM)I imagine the three of them singing on high (my mom having had to get to heaven, in order to acquire an angelic voice---as she would have been the first to tell you she lacked, in the too-frail flesh! ;-p)
Stupendous, indeed! I had a later Alcina, which together with the Messiah and the Chandos' anthems got me alive through my youth, but this is ever so fresh and lovely!
While I enjoyed Sutherland in 19th c Italian opera, I was never comfortable with her forays into the previous century. Nor was I alone in this. The Guardian's obituary of Dame Joan concluded with this paragraph:Some conductors did not easily accept the flourishes that Bonynge wrote for Sutherland. Sir Adrian Boult's only known joke was made when he was recording Handel: "Mad scenes from the Messiah," he commented.
That's a very clever remark, but it's Bonynge he complained about, not Sutherland. I've heard many over ornamented Messiahs in my listening career.
"...it's Bonynge he complained about, not Sutherland" is a very difficult separation to make, Susan. "Over-ornamentation" is in the ear of the hearer, as well as the mouth of the singer, but ornamentation not written into the original score was normal performance practice up to and including Mozart. Very definitely so in the time of Handel. It's only in the past thirty or forty years that we've moved from the barely ornamented performances of the Malcolm Sargeant era, to the far more historically correct performances that are now common. The first performance of "Messiah"featured soloists, roughly two dozen choristers, a small chamber orchestra, and continuo. "Big Band" Handel, regardless of whether it comes in a Sargent, Boult or Sutherland package, does limited justice to the clarity and line of the music.Quitting on a positive note, Andreas Scholl & Barbara Schlick's "He Shall Feed His Flock" and a "period" performance of Bright Seraphim - lighter, but well-articulated voice and appropriate instrumentation and pitch.
Lest you think I am ignorant I just want you to know that I am well aware of all you have written, Lapin, as I have studied vocal historical performance practice of early music for nearly all of those 30 or 40 years. That is why I made the remarks that I did. Sutherland's package was wrapped in Bonynge's paper, as he was the one that developed her upper register and musical abilities for singing all that marvelous music. Otherwise she would have remained a Mezzo Soprano. I personally don't think she should have ever sung the Handel oratorios. Opera on the other hand is another kettle of fish, and completely overblown anyway, so I say she could sing it if she wanted. Obviously she could sing it early on in her 'coloratura' career. As she got older, not so much.
If that last post is a bit crabby - and it is - I apologize. Have been on a roller-coaster this week with my little English Pointer, whose lung cancer, in remission for the past thirty months (that's how long I've had her) or longer, has been very active these past few weeks. Tuesday she quit eating, and pretty well quit drinking as well. She was in such sorry shape this morning that the vet & I were discussing whether to put her down today or wait until tomorrow morning. Fortunately I held off until tomorrow. Around 2:30 pm, she abruptly snapped out of it, and within an hour she had gorged two bowls of food and was on the front porch shrieking with annoyance at a neighbour's Sheltie, with whom she shares a mutual hate thing. Amazing resilience. Thank God we didn't put her down this lunch time. The prognosis is dire, of course, but every remaining good day is a gift.Excuse the ramble, but ......And the performance of "He shall lead His flock" linked above is excellent.
Sorry to read about the doggie! I know how hard it is to let go of a pet.
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