Magic time

La Cieca hears that the Met has promised Renee Fleming a production of Rossini’s Armida in 2010-2011. The five years advance notice should allow plenty of time to complete all the necessary tranpositions to the score, and no doubt the ultra-busy diva is already figuring out how she will balance rehearsals against quality time with her grandchildren.


9 Responses to “Magic time”

  1. papagenodz Says:

    Unrelated to Renaay — did anyone else see Kathleen Battle on the United Negro College Fund salute to Steve Wonder? She sang a fantastic duet with James Ingram — sounded WONDERFUL, very soulful with lots of mix, some beautiful new low tones, and some EYE CONTACT with the wonderful Mr. Ingram. Reminscent of her fine work on the Spirituals in Concert program. Welcome back Kathleen!

  2. Il Tenore di Coloratura Superba Says:

    I’m starting to get the feeling that I’m one of the only people on this website who actually likes Renee…I think the Met SHOULD do Armida and various other ‘not-so-standard’ operas. I mean, Rossini wrote 39, Donizetti wrote over 60, Boieldieu wrote 61, Massenet wrote 40 something, Verdi has 28 to choose from, and don’t forget Meyerbeer and Adam and plenty of others…why do we have to be subjected to the same operas over and over again – as great as they are, it would be nice to be subjected to some of the great musical gemstones of the past!

  3. This is good news. I don’t want to hear some retard do it. Can we also get a revival of Semiramide in the house?

  4. Il Tenore di Grazia Says:

    I’m not sure I understand either why the perceived animosity towards Renee Fleming. I find that she’s become somewhat affected and artificial perhaps. The voice has hardened a bit. But she still sounds good to me and certainly better than many other sopranos around.

    Perhaps it’s that she’s never settled on a specific repertoire. Hard to identify her with a specific role, or to think of her as the best in it.

    In my view she could have been the Mozart soprano of her generation. But I’m not sure she sings any Mozart anymore.

  5. papagenodz Says:

    Exactly! Renee’s “L’amero saro costante” came on the Itunes this afternoon — ravishing and can stand up to anyone’s. I’ve had some incredible moments in the opera house with Renee and some very strange moments. But did anyone else see Battle???

  6. Boringwhitegirl Says:

    Renee’s Traviata certainly left me bawling even over the radio. And I’d love to hear her Marschellin. But I left her Pirata feeling cheated and angry –especially after she treated herself to a faint in her curtain call she didn’t earn. I don’t know where Handel fits into the equation, but she strikes me as way too anodyne and politically correct to handle the bel canto repetoire. She just won’t verge close enough to tastelessness to do anything interesting. (Then again, given what I’ve just said, I don’t know how to explain her version of “Rainbow” in La Cieca’s “filth” section.)

  7. papagenodz Says:

    As La Cieca has wisely pointed out before, Fleming lacks the stamina to sing the big Handel roles. I saw the Alcina in Chicago — started well, but Ah mio cor sounded like “Happiness is just a thing called Joe” and she was pooped by the end. Christine Goerke, although suffering from intonation problems throughout the night, was certainly in fresh voice by the end of the evening at NYCO. Rodelinda on the radio wasn’t much different — and she lightens her voice so much for the passage work. A shame for a singer who used to have one of the best trills in the world. At least in Mozart and Strauss where she can still be quite resplendant (I saw her last run of New York Marschallins) when she puts her mind and her style to it, she gets breaks to refocus the sound.

    Semiramide makes me nervous. She recorded Armida and it had some moments, but that was a long time ago. Loved the way out there fashion design concept (d’Arcangelo as a gargoyle, right?)

  8. rysanekfreak Says:

    When Renee champions rare repetoire, I back her 100%… well 99%. I get nervous when she interpolates wild High Ebs or above and doesn’t quite make it.

    I have been lucky enough to see her in “Louise” and “Herodiade.” She should be doing Thais and Daphne and Arabella all over the world.

    I would welcome “Armida.” I would definitely welcome another Met “Semiramide” broadcast, especially with Ewa Podles as Arsace.

    And I agree that I’m getting tired of “Boheme” and “Carmen” and “Traviata” and “Butterfly” with routine casts.

    It’s time for Renee to do more rare bel canto especially at the Met.

  9. I have always wanted to really like Renee and up to a few years ago Ruth Ann, unfortunately,as in the Swenson Puritani, while the singing was certainly nothing to really complain about, she just left me cold. While I occassionally admire the sound I am rarely moved by either performer,I enjoyed Renee in Ghosts, Nozze, and Rosenkavalier and found her Desdemona satisfactory, but in roles like Pirata and Lucrezia found her lacking and in Traviata neither one of them moved me the way Cotrubas, or Scotto, or Gallardo Domas did,ditto for Renee’s Marguerite in Faust, I am always waiting to be excited and always let down. While Renee has gone off the wall with some of her “thoughtful” interpretations and Ruth Ann has sounded old to me lately, I regret the fact that when they both came on the scene ten years ago neither singer ever really lived up to their hype and never really showed the real stage presenece or understanding of their roles to truly make for a moving experience. Unfortunately I could say the same thing for most American trained singers. All one has to do is compare Mattila to Fleming in the roles they share. Mattila is always an exciting performer who makes every role her own, while Fleming often produces lovely sound but rarely excites.

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