~~ Classical Music Mayhem!! ~~

The classical music forum where the MUSIC comes first!
It is currently Sat Apr 29, 2017 5:38 pm

Contact Us | All times are UTC



Welcome
Welcome to Classical Music Mayhem!! The multi-media Classical Music Forum.

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest. You can browse the topics in most of the forums but by joining our free community you will have full access to post messages and create topics; download attachments; communicate privately with other members (PM), email and chat room; respond to polls; upload content, and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple, and absolutely free, so please, join our community today!

You can log in as soon as you have submitted your registration, no waiting for email confirmation.


Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 22 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Rossini - Il Barbiere di Siviglia
PostPosted: Sat Dec 07, 2013 10:53 pm 
Offline
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 11:24 am
Posts: 21205
Location: London, England
Il Barbiere di Siviglia (The Barber of Seville)

Image


Gioachino Rossini’s comic opera Il Barbiere di Siviglia (The Barber of Seville) is one of the most beloved and widely-performed operas today. The opera, which is rumored to have been composed in less than two weeks, was originally titled Almaviva, likely to distinguish it from Paisiello’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia, another popular opera at the time that is based on the same Beaumarchais play. Today, Paisiello’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia is all but completely overshadowed by Rossini’s masterpiece.

Hurried preparations, the death of the impresario Duke Sforza-Cesarini days before the first performance, and rowdy Paisiello fans meant the premiere of the opera on February 20, 1816, was a disaster. Rossini, so disturbed by its failure, refused to conduct any more performances. In an effort to revive the work, Rossini made several revisions, with the overture receiving the biggest changes. Rossini borrowed from himself and substituted music from an earlier opera Aureliano in Palmira into the overture; the subsequent introduction is now one of the best-known parts of Il Barbiere di Siviglia, and contains some of the most easily-recognized tunes in all of classical music.
Notes from Alexander Street Press

Further notes, synopsis and libretto..
http://www.opera-guide.ch/opera.php?id=318&uilang=en

Further notes & synopsis...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Barber_of_Seville

_________________
"If I were but of noble birth..." - Rod Corkin


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Rossini - Il Barbiere di Siviglia
PostPosted: Sat Dec 07, 2013 10:53 pm 
Offline
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 11:24 am
Posts: 21205
Location: London, England
Below is a recording of the famous Overture in mp3 format free and legal for all members to download thanks to . Performed by the Orchestre d'Etat du Palatinat Rhénan under the direction of Kurt Redel...




Also the even more famous aria for Figaro....



The whole opera...

_________________
"If I were but of noble birth..." - Rod Corkin


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: Rossini - Il Barbiere di Siviglia
PostPosted: Sun Dec 08, 2013 2:36 am 
Offline
MAJOR
MAJOR
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jun 16, 2008 3:08 pm
Posts: 684
Location: Queens, New York
Rod, You chose a great topic here but some voices from the past show how the Largo al Factotum should be sung when ample vocal resourses are available. I may be chauvanistic but two of my favorites are sung by Leonard Warren and Robert Merrill from N.Y.C.. Warren was one of the greatest Verdi baritones and his direct competition was Merrill. These two singers had very large voices that would give one goosebumps when heard live. Here is Warren from a Voice of Firestone broadcast. Note his limitless top notes. He died on stage at the Met during a performance of La Forza Del Destino:


Here is Merrill from 1978. What you see is what you got, a very personable, avuncular man who I met after an Old Met La Traviata performance:

_________________
Digiti

De gustibus non est disputandum


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: Rossini - Il Barbiere di Siviglia
PostPosted: Sun Dec 08, 2013 9:10 pm 
Offline
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 11:24 am
Posts: 21205
Location: London, England
Digiti wrote:
Rod, You chose a great topic here but some voices from the past show how the Largo al Factotum should be sung when ample vocal resourses are available...

Thanks for the two videos Digiti. I thought Leonard Warren's rendition was very good, phrasing well defined and characterful. Robert Merrill rather less well defined, in the above performance at least.

_________________
"If I were but of noble birth..." - Rod Corkin


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: Rossini - Il Barbiere di Siviglia
PostPosted: Sun Dec 08, 2013 11:22 pm 
Offline
COLONEL
COLONEL
User avatar

Joined: Tue Apr 06, 2010 11:43 pm
Posts: 1178
Location: New Zealand
Hi Digiti,

Thankyou for those two most pleasing videos.I enjoyed both, but whilst the first was performed very much in operatic manner, and the voice was very good, I preferred Robert Merrill's rendition! No, I hadn't seen TMT's reply when I made my judgement, so I am not being provocative!

Merrill's voice had such a distinctive timbre and he sang it with suitable dramatic light , shade and nuance, I thought. His own warmth seemed to come through in his voice.

But then, I am not an operatic buff and was judging him just as a vocalist, not specifically in an opera role. I expect that there are many do's and don'ts when singing opera and I am woefully ignorant of them!

Regards,

Polly


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: Rossini - Il Barbiere di Siviglia
PostPosted: Sun Dec 08, 2013 11:35 pm 
Offline
MAJOR
MAJOR
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jun 16, 2008 3:08 pm
Posts: 684
Location: Queens, New York
Dear Polly,
You are right that Merrill's rendition had more personality and smile in his singing but when vocal gifts are compared Warren will always be supreme. It is said that Warren used to entertain at parties by singing up into the tenor range.Unfortunately I never got to hear Warren in a live performance but Robert Merrill never disappointed me in a litany of live Met performances especially with the tenor Richard Tucker.
Happy listening.

_________________
Digiti

De gustibus non est disputandum


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: Rossini - Il Barbiere di Siviglia
PostPosted: Mon Dec 09, 2013 12:00 am 
Offline
COLONEL
COLONEL
User avatar

Joined: Tue Apr 06, 2010 11:43 pm
Posts: 1178
Location: New Zealand
Hi TMT,

Thankyou for presenting the Overture to "The Barber of Seville", performed by the Orchestre d' Etat du Palatinat Rhénan directed by Kurt Redel.Its melodic nature and excellent orchestral performance made it very pleasant listening.

Figaro performed well in the video of the "Figaro" Aria. He had a nice baritone voice and I was impressed at both his vocal and physical agility. How is it possible to move around and still have enough breath to sing this role? I was breathless just watching and listening!!!

I will have to defer listening to the whole Opera until I have more time, perhaps some evening soon.

Regards,

Polly


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: Rossini - Il Barbiere di Siviglia
PostPosted: Mon Dec 09, 2013 9:00 pm 
Offline
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 11:24 am
Posts: 21205
Location: London, England
pollyp78 wrote:
Hi TMT,

Thankyou for presenting the Overture to "The Barber of Seville", performed by the Orchestre d' Etat du Palatinat Rhénan directed by Kurt Redel.Its melodic nature and excellent orchestral performance made it very pleasant listening.

Figaro performed well in the video of the "Figaro" Aria. He had a nice baritone voice and I was impressed at both his vocal and physical agility. How is it possible to move around and still have enough breath to sing this role? I was breathless just watching and listening!!!

I will have to defer listening to the whole Opera until I have more time, perhaps some evening soon.

Regards,

Polly

Yes that recording of the overture is not bad Polly, worth keeping. I'm not overly familiar with most of this opera myself, other than the above aria, the overture and a few other bits and pieces. The aria video I provided is decent enough, I don't know who's singing but not quite in the class of that Leonard Warren rendition. I'm waiting for someone to provide the Bugs Bunny version!

Beethoven admired this opera so that must be a big plus point in its favour from my perspective. I find myself wondering if it contains many vocal 'hits' other than Largo al factotum? You know given my taste I don't expect to wait long to hear the next good tune.. :D

_________________
"If I were but of noble birth..." - Rod Corkin


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: Rossini - Il Barbiere di Siviglia
PostPosted: Mon Dec 09, 2013 10:16 pm 
Offline
MAJOR
MAJOR
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jun 16, 2008 3:08 pm
Posts: 684
Location: Queens, New York
,Rod here are some of the Barber's greatest hits:

Una voce poco fa sung either by a mezzo soprano or coloratura soprano. Here is the gorgeous Latvian mezzo Elina Garanca with her rendition:


Here is one of the tenor arias sung by Juan Diego Flores:


La Calunnia Don Basilio's aria sung by Samuel Ramey:



Here is the often cut aria for tenor based on non piu mesta from Rossini's other opera La Cenerentola. Some real vocal fireworks are on display here:



Here is a trio sung by Ruth Welting, Thomas Allen, and Luigi Alva Ziti piano piano



Like I said these are just some of the hits from this opera. Enjoy!

_________________
Digiti

De gustibus non est disputandum


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: Rossini - Il Barbiere di Siviglia
PostPosted: Tue Dec 10, 2013 9:25 pm 
Offline
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 11:24 am
Posts: 21205
Location: London, England
Digiti wrote:
,Rod here are some of the Barber's greatest hits:

Thanks for the compilation Digity, that's just the ticket. I'll be checking them all out and will report back. Not tonight because I am knackered after a long day, and its only Tuesday... :(

_________________
"If I were but of noble birth..." - Rod Corkin


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: Rossini - Il Barbiere di Siviglia
PostPosted: Wed Dec 11, 2013 9:48 pm 
Offline
COLONEL
COLONEL
User avatar

Joined: Tue Apr 06, 2010 11:43 pm
Posts: 1178
Location: New Zealand
Hi Digiti,
Thankyou for attaching the above video clips.These arias provide a wider field for those of us who are not au fait with anything but the barest bones of this opera.

I confess to not being an opera lover, in general, although I do like many assorted arias that come my way; the Italian ones being often catchy and rhythmic in nature.But my knowledge is pathetically small and unfortunately I am not driven to enlarge it!!! Handel's arias are in a different category and I revel in the beautiful soaring melodies he so often writes---however, again my knowledge is rather bitty.

I loved Elena Garanca's beautiful voice, and she sang her role expressively. What wonderful features she has, too, with lovely eyes, and I couldn't take my eyes off those gorgeous cheekbones! How fortunate she is to have such sculptured looks to enhance her performances.

I enjoyed listening to Samuel Ramey, not for the aria but because I have always liked his voice! Juan Diego Flores spoilt the music for me as his upper register seemed to me to be reedy and having a "neighing" quality----it irritated me no end! When I could divorce myself from that the music was pleasant enough

The trio gave me mixed feelings as although the music was melodic I found the female voice to be rather squealy. I liked the mens' vocal input , though, and the orchestral accompaniment.

So you see that you have rather a Philistine in your midst, who has ill-repaid your kindness in providing the videos. Sorry, Digiti.

Now a note for TMT in reply to his earlier comment. I had said that I liked the performance of the Figaro aria video. Well I did, but I was conscious that the whole production was of a light weight and in no way comparable with what accrues at the NY Metropolitan Opera Company. Similarly the singer was not in the same class as the renowned Operatic baritone Leonard Warren---or indeed Robert Merrill. There are degrees of talent, but that should not prevent us from enjoying a nice attempt by a lesser singer or amateur company. I re-listened to these baritones again and Warren's technical and vocal mastery was very evident.

Thankyou gentlemen for videos and comments which are helping me with my musical appreciation! :)

Regards,

Polly.


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: Rossini - Il Barbiere di Siviglia
PostPosted: Sat Dec 14, 2013 9:39 pm 
Offline
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 11:24 am
Posts: 21205
Location: London, England
pollyp78 wrote:
Hi Digiti,
...Handel's arias are in a different category and I revel in the beautiful soaring melodies he so often writes---however, again my knowledge is rather bitty.

Your knowledge appears astute enough to place Handel in a different category, because only Handel provides those gorgeous arias, even in comic opera (think of Ombra mai fu and Where'er she walks to name but two such examples from Handel comedies) and in large numbers.

The question is as a composer do you want to present humour in a package consisting entirely of fun and farce, a la Rossini, or something offering a few other dimensions, a la Handel and, say, Mozart?

To my ears with Una voce poco fa the joke wore thin rather quickly, coloratura or no I'm not sure if any performance could change that impression.

I didn’t warm to Juan Diego Flores' singing in the second video (Ecco ridente in cielo). Though not particularly beautiful I think this aria could sound more appealing than it does here.

La Calunnia offers some fireworks in addition to the geniality, generally quite appealing though some of the writing sounds rather commonplace. Samuel Ramey does ok with it.

Though not entirely without merit I would not regard these three examples as ‘hits’ in the sense (or should I say standard) I consider the term, they are more like standard filler items. Then again I was not really expecting another Largo al factotum from this opera, because if there was such a piece we would have heard it decades ago in Bugs Bunny!

I’ll comment on the last two of Digiti’s videos later, Bacchus calls me with a vat of strong Shiraz …

_________________
"If I were but of noble birth..." - Rod Corkin


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: Rossini - Il Barbiere di Siviglia
PostPosted: Sun Dec 15, 2013 10:17 am 
Offline
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 11:24 am
Posts: 21205
Location: London, England
Rod Corkin wrote:
I'm waiting for someone to provide the Bugs Bunny version!

OK I'll do it..



:thumbsup:

_________________
"If I were but of noble birth..." - Rod Corkin


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: Rossini - Il Barbiere di Siviglia
PostPosted: Sun Dec 15, 2013 5:07 pm 
Offline
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 11:24 am
Posts: 21205
Location: London, England
Rod Corkin wrote:
Beethoven admired this opera...

I should add that Beethoven was apparently not so sympathetic with Rossini's entire operatic output. I've dug out his quote stating that Rossini, indeed Italian composers in general, should stay away from opera seria...

Retold neatly at Wiki...

When Rossini visited Vienna, he made several attempts to meet Beethoven, who was then 51 and in failing health. Finally, Rossini was able to arrange a meeting with Beethoven through the help of Giuseppe Carpani, an Italian poet living in Vienna. According to various accounts, Beethoven recognized Rossini and complimented him on The Barber of Seville, adding that he should never try to write anything other than opera buffa (comedy operas) as that would be against his (Rossini's) nature. When Carpani reminded Beethoven that Rossini had already composed several serious operas, Beethoven is reported to have said, "Yes, I looked at them. Opera seria (serious opera) is ill-suited to the Italians. You do not know how to deal with real drama."

_________________
"If I were but of noble birth..." - Rod Corkin


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: Rossini - Il Barbiere di Siviglia
PostPosted: Sun Dec 15, 2013 9:46 pm 
Offline
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
JOVE THE MIGHTY THUNDERER
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 11:24 am
Posts: 21205
Location: London, England
Digiti wrote:
Here is the often cut aria for tenor based on non piu mesta from Rossini's other opera La Cenerentola. Some real vocal fireworks are on display here:

Though not a bad aria I can understand the temptation to cut it - its inclusion means for almost 10 minutes the action is effectively brought to a halt, which may be too long for an opera of this nature. The aria does not seem essential to the plot so its absence would not be a handicap in that respect. A bravura piece for sure but not perhaps distinctive enough to make the producers forget these other issues.

Again like Polly I would take issue with Juan Diego Flores' contribution, the 10 minutes would pass by more sweetly with a better soloist, though of course the audience wildly applauds Flores at the end.

_________________
"If I were but of noble birth..." - Rod Corkin


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 22 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

Contact Us | All times are UTC


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Jump to:  
cron
suspicion-preferred