Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Tutti mi chiedono, tutti mi vogliono

The fall season may not begin for almost a month according to opera houses worldwide, but according to universities, including my own, it is well and truly upon us.  While of course I shall be continuing to obsess about opera without interruption, September may be a month of somewhat sporadic posting, as I reenter the academic arena as student and teacher.  If I can be as patient and firm as Minnie with her miners, I'll be doing well.  Getting into a routine of waking up with early-morning pinks and golds still on the brickwork, making sure my briefcase is adequately packed, notes adequately prepared for lecture and library, I've been feeling a certain amount of empathy for Figaro being pulled qua, là, su, giù.  "Ahimè," I was saying to myself, "che furia! Ahimè, che folla!"  

Is it possible not to be drawn in by the animal high spirits of Hermann Prey's Figaro?:

I'm always mildly shocked when Tito Gobbi isn't playing Scarpia... especially when he's having as much fun as here.  I love the old-Hollywood-style filming (although why a busy barber is wearing pompoms is a mystery to me): 

Watching these, I was struck by something:  Figaro is happy.  Just listen to him tra-la-la-ing!  Keeping long hours, being pulled this way and that, overwhelmed with demands... he's a happy man, who loves his work and is proud of doing it.  And I can say that too.  I need to remember that, like the barber of Seville, I am "fortunatissimo per verità."


  1. You are right, Lucia. And the real chaos is coming later (one of my favourites):


    Mi par d'esser con la testa
    in un'orrida fucina,
    dove cresce e mai non resta
    delle incudini sonore
    l'importuno strepitar.
    Alternando questo e quello
    pesantissimo martello
    fa con barbara armonia
    muri e volte rimbombar.
    E il cervello, poverello,
    gia' stordito, sbalordito,
    non ragiona, si confonde,
    si riduce ad impazzar.

  2. Lucy, if you are as obsessed with your University as you are with opera, then I have no doubt you'll do well! Having studied French Language and Literature myself, I know too many obsessions at the same time can be a bit tiring from time to time. By the way, octobre might be a good time to see if you've lived up to the 'Minnie and the miners' thing. A new (Opus) release of Fanciulla del West is expected around that time, with Eva-Maria Westbroek as Minnie, recorded in december 2009, DNO, Amsterdam. Do well.

  3. Many thanks for the encouragement! and for the musical recommendations! The Rossini is such a joy, and to see those singers in that production is a treat. Thanks for the DVD info, Rob; I hadn't heard about it, although I am hoping to see "Fanciulla" at the Met this winter.


Start a conversation!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...