Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Montserrat Cabale Marilyn Horne Concert / Philharmonie Hall Munich|
Genres: Music Video & Concerts, Musicals & Performing Arts
Two great stars of the operatic stage, Spanish soprano Montserrat CaballÚ and American mezzo-soprano Marilyn Horne, give magnificent performances in these superb gala concerts from the Philharmonie Hall, Munich, featurin... more »
Caballe in bad form
cherubino | Houston, Texas United States | 06/19/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Unfortunately, this joint concert by two great operatic divas is not as spectacular as it could have been.
By 1990, both were past their primes, but in the case of Caballe, a little research explains why she is in such sub-par form. In late 1989, she was suffering from chronic bronchitis, which severely impacted her singing. She tried to cancel a series of perfomances of Respighi's La Fiamma, at the Teatro Liceu. Unfortunately, they artistically blackmailed her, claiming that no substitute singer was available, and it would result in the opera house being closed for five nights, a sharp loss in ticket sales. Montserrat fulfilled her engagement, although the singing left her horse. The sheer effort to sing despite her ailing condition resulted in pneumonia.
This gala performance from Munich was one of her first singing endeavors following the worse spell of illness in her career. Unfortunately for Caballe, this televised concert exposes how shaky her voice was as she tried to recover from the bout of pneumonia and exhaustion. From the very beginning, it's evident that Caballe is nowhere near peak form. The Bajazet aria, taken at a laboriously slow pace, is sung with broken legato and unsteadiness of pitch. Also distressing is that Caballe seems so tired and worn out. She sings with her eyes closed during much of the performance.
In her solo arias, there are some baubles that one would think La Caballe simply incapable of. At the end of the Mercadante aria, there is a weak, lamentable trill, for example. At several points, the famous pianissimi seem a challenge for her. On a normal night, she could have floated those until the cows came home. Her high notes, always a might sharp, are glassy and brittle sometimes.
Please, don't think of me as a negative reviewer. I adore Caballe, but this performance was probably best left in the vaults. Souveniers of bad performances like this, due to illess, have the potential to tarnish a singer's reputition.
This DVD isn't a total loss. Horne is in good form- maybe not as good as in her glory days, but still a formidable artists. Of her solo arias, the Meyerbeer ranks as the highlight. Of her duos with Caballe, Giorno D'Orrore and Belle Nuit recreate some of the magic that they were known for."
It is magic!!!
W. V. | NEW YORK | 04/27/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Very rarely I find a DVD that I can say its excellent. The images are very clear, the editing is very good, the close-ups are to dye for, the extra clips are very amusing (you can see both Divas arriving to the airport and been greeted by fans). The sound is very clear, the repertory is in excellent taste, and the singing is spectacular. What else would you want for this price? This got to be the best concert DVD ever."
Long Live Bel Canto & Long Live Montserrat Caballe !
Viva Caballe | 04/28/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is the long awaited dvd release of two fabulous gala concerts.Starring the divine Madame Caballe and the formidable Marilyn Horne.These rare and beautiful performances were recorded in excellent picture and sound.These concerts have brought me such joy,every time I watch them I feel the unbearable lightness of being.The beauty of the Caballe sound,raises my consciousness and spirit into a state of total bliss.
My favorite selctions from this dvd are sposa son disprezzata sung worshipfully by Caballe.Non...vous n'avez jamais je gage such by Horne with fire.Dovo sono? by mercadante a rarity and gorgeously sung by Caballe.O patria...Di tanti palpiti sang passionately by Horne.You must have this dvd also if just to hear the most spectacular,O mio babbino caro sung with magical pianissimos and gorgeous phrashing by Caballe,and lastely my favorite duet sung by Caballe & Horne would have to be the sublime Belle Nuit from Barcarole.
Long Live Bel Canto!
Paul Williamson | Etobicoke, Ontario Canada | 03/10/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"To see these two mighty women burst unto the stage and sing wasa desperate treat for me! It shows (as I sing opera myself) a lot of the old school vocal techniques which are very rare in this day and age. I very much appreciate the artistry, but I also appreciate even more the relationship that these two singers have with each other, and the love and respect they share one for the other. If only we behaved like that more...(*sigh*)!"