Ninon Vallin – French Soprano

Eugénie “Ninon” Vallin (September 1886 – November 22 , 1961) was a French soprano who achieved considerable popularity in opera, operetta and classical song recitals during an international career that lasted for more than four decades.  In this post, I am going to give you a sample of her repetoire.  I also must apologize.  Normally,Continue reading Ninon Vallin – French Soprano

Mattia Battistini – Bel Canto Baritone

Mattia Battistini was considered to be one of the greatest singers of opera.  He displays on record the perfect blending of his registers and a sophisticated use of ornamentation, portamento and fil di voce, as well as an array of rubato and legato effects. His art was perfected before the advent of verismo opera inContinue reading Mattia Battistini – Bel Canto Baritone

Nadezhda Obukhova, Russian Mezzo

Nadezhda Obukhova was one of Russia’s most beloved artists during the post-war years. Already 28 at the outbreak of WorldWar I, she could well be expected to have recorded during the pre-electric period. Why she was not given the opportunity to do so, will probably never be known. Listening to her records of 1937 onwardsContinue reading Nadezhda Obukhova, Russian Mezzo

Frida Leider – Es Gibt ein Reich

Today, I want to talk about German opera, specifically Ariadne auf Naxos by Richard Strauss.  I am going to reveal my terrible prejudice now – I think that the best vocal music is in German.  I’m happy for anybody to convince me otherwise.  This opera is a little farfetched, but it does have a very,Continue reading Frida Leider – Es Gibt ein Reich

Nabucco – Anch’io dischiuso

Verdi wrote two high dramatic soprano roles:  Abigaille in Nabucco, and Lady Macbeth in Macbeth.  These roles are close to impossible, which is why these works are seldom heard.  However, in the past there were sopranos who could sing these roles, and I am going to show you two of them.  We will focus onContinue reading Nabucco – Anch’io dischiuso

Richard Strauss Capriccio Mondscheinmusik und Letze Szene – Lisa Della Casa, soprano

Capriccio:  Mondscheinmusik und Letze Szene Capriccio had its premiere at the Munich, National Theater, 1942.   It was Richard Strauss’s final opera, and it is a sophisticated “conversation piece for music” (the work’s actual subtitle) centering on the age-old question of whether words or music take precedence in theater and in the arts in general. AContinue reading Richard Strauss Capriccio Mondscheinmusik und Letze Szene – Lisa Della Casa, soprano

Mendelssohn Quintet in A major, Op. 18 Music from Marlboro: Laredo, Kavafian, Ohyama, Kashkashian, Robinson

I have a recording of Mendelssohn’s Quintet in A Major, opus 18.  The artists were : Jaime Laredo, violin; Ani Kavafian, violin; Heiichiro Ohyama, viola; Kim Kashkashian, viola; Sharon Robinson, cello.  The performers were part of the Music from Marlboro group. The CD was made in 1990, but this group was playing this particular pieceContinue reading Mendelssohn Quintet in A major, Op. 18 Music from Marlboro: Laredo, Kavafian, Ohyama, Kashkashian, Robinson