Archive for January, 2007

Helmets off, here they come, those Beautiful Girls!

Posted in diva, mp3 on January 31, 2007 by lacieca

A galaxy of talent sufficient to cast an Arena di Verona production of Sondheim’s Follies assembles in the following recording. It’s the “Ride of the Valkyries” as sung on February 13, 2003 at a gala performance in Tokyo. Wotan’s daughters, in order of appearance: Alessandra Marc (Gerhilde), Eva Marton (Helmwige), Karan Armstrong (Waltraute), Agnes Baltsa (Schwertleite), Anna Tomowa-Sintow (Ortlinde), Gwyneth Jones (doubling Siegrune and Rossweisse) … and Jochen Kowalski (Grimgerde).



Posted in gay gay gay gay gay, mattila, met, silja on January 31, 2007 by lacieca

Don’t forget that this Friday, February 2 is “Gay Hookup Night at the Met,” or as it is more formally titled, “Connect at the Met for Gay and Lesbian Singles.” Whether your goal is serious husband-hunting, a casual encounter to share Champagne and dessert, or just to demonstrate that there are some queens out there even more desperate than you are, the Met’s the place to be on Friday night. And let it not be forgotten that the opera itself is one of the Met’s most artistic offerings this season, a revival of Janacek’s Jenufa starring top-flight divas Karita Mattila and Anja Silja.

The all-inclusive $95 ticket includes an orchestra seat with a chance to mingle with other opera lovers, a pre-performance hors d’oeuvres reception and a champagne-dessert reception at intermission during which time you can sneak a peek at the exhibition of Callas’s stage jewelry. (And with all that gaiety going on, La Cieca wouldn’t be surprised to if she saw go-go boys in skimpy gold shorts giving lap dances in Grand Tier boxes.) More details and ordering instructions are on the new improved

A story headline writers live for

Posted in world leaders dancing in underwear on January 31, 2007 by lacieca

Dame Kiri perturbed by flying underwear, court told

Underwear tossing a deal breaker for opera star


Court told of dame’s fear of undie throwers

Dame Kiri got knickers in twist over concerts

Amazing Anja SIlja

Posted in diva, met, youtube on January 30, 2007 by lacieca

In honor of the soprano’s return to the Met in Jenufa, a selection of performances from 1959 – 2004.

Junktrunk speaks!

Posted in contest on January 30, 2007 by lacieca

“Of Edita Gruberova‘s debut here two weeks ago, Hanslick wrote in Latin Inches, ‘Not since Elisabeth Schwarzkopf melted the heart of a gazillion year old fan seated far up in the loge of the great Everard Baths has any artist managed to slide both the waggish and buxom aspects of Wagner’s strapping little jailer-girl. Her high F sharps are pure, with the instrumental timbre of a theremin, and she is not afraid to use elbow resonance when necessary’.”

Yes, the judging has begun in the first MadLib competition. Look on this site for an announcement of the winners later today.

Sein Weg

Posted in camp, mp3 on January 28, 2007 by lacieca

That most versatile of all golden-age divas, Lilli Lehmann, must be looking down from Paradise right now with a peculiarly puzzled expression on her face, for at last she has a rival.

Meet Ingrid Höfer, an artist with a “mission to sing.” Mme. Höfer’s discography reveals that her range runs the gamut from Traditional folk material through Bach oratorio, Romantic Lieder and even choral music from Wagnerian stage-consecrating-festival-drama.

Along the way, the protean Höfer instrument soars through material more tradionally associated with dramatic soprano, coloratura soprano, and contralto. Die Höfer even takes on the challenge of a form that the mighty Lilli dared not attempt, i.e., the Broadway show tune.

La Höfer points out on her website about these sound clips “Erwähnenswert wäre noch, dass Sie hier die dunkle (nicht tiefe) Vokalfärbung eines dramatischen Sopran und nicht eines lyrischen hören.” That is, “It should be noted that you are hearing the dark (not low) vocal timbre of a dramatic soprano, not a lyric.” So noted.

Voce di donna

Posted in podcast on January 28, 2007 by lacieca

On a new episode of Unnatural Acts of Opera that can only be called fabulous, we hear the first act of Un ballo in maschera as it was performed at La Scala in April of 1956. Gianandrea Gavazzeni is the conductor, and even by the lofty standards of Unnatural Acts of Opera the cast is very starry indeed: Giuseppe di Stefano, Antonietta Stella, Ettore Bastianini, and Ebe Stignani. And what’s more, La Cieca herself makes her podcast singing debut!