Mostly Mozart opens with crossover artist

Locked
jbuck919
Military Band Specialist
Posts: 26746
Joined: Wed Jan 28, 2004 10:15 pm
Location: Stony Creek, New York

Mostly Mozart opens with crossover artist

Post by jbuck919 » Thu Jul 28, 2005 7:31 pm

I suppose it was inevitable that pop styles of singing would infect serious singing even in the upper echelons (choir directors at all levels have been dealing with this for years). In tonight's performance of three Handel arias, Renee Fleming did it all: anticipated attacks, delayed attacks, (frequent) scooping into notes, and inappropriate portamentos. I'm surprised she didn't sing "Let the Braaaaht Seraphim" (maybe she did and we just couldn't tell because the tempo was so fast).
Last edited by jbuck919 on Thu Jul 28, 2005 7:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

Ralph
Dittersdorf Specialist & CMG NY Host
Posts: 20996
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2005 6:54 am
Location: Paradise on Earth, New York, NY

Post by Ralph » Thu Jul 28, 2005 7:56 pm

I couldn't go to tonight's concert but I watched it while working. It wasn't bad but I've been to a few of these recreations of an eighteenth century academy and, personally, I'll take my symphonies performed in one piece, not with movements scattered among arias and piano works.

I am very interested in the Avery Fisher Hall reconfiguration and I look forward to experiencing it next week.

For the Live from Lincoln Center telecast they nixed the usual aisle vendors with their popcorn, cotton candy and large sodas with straws shaped like batons.
Image

"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."

Albert Einstein

GK
Posts: 467
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2005 8:04 am
Location: Silver Spring, MD

Post by GK » Thu Jul 28, 2005 8:26 pm

Every year I tune onto this concert with great trepidation fearing that they will sneak in a Dittersdorf piece. One year they actually did--a double bass concerto, oy. This year they didn't, so I regard it a successful program despite the piecemeal production.

Ralph
Dittersdorf Specialist & CMG NY Host
Posts: 20996
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2005 6:54 am
Location: Paradise on Earth, New York, NY

Post by Ralph » Thu Jul 28, 2005 8:41 pm

GK wrote:Every year I tune onto this concert with great trepidation fearing that they will sneak in a Dittersdorf piece. One year they actually did--a double bass concerto, oy. This year they didn't, so I regard it a successful program despite the piecemeal production.
*****

It's true-Mostly Mozart's timid programmers only aim for the hoi polloi.
Image

"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."

Albert Einstein

Werner
CMG's Elder Statesman
Posts: 4223
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2005 9:23 pm
Location: Irvington, NY

Post by Werner » Thu Jul 28, 2005 9:39 pm

Like John and Ralph, I watched the telecast tonight. I was more inclined to go along with the performance style, even if it's not what we're accustomed to since the custom has changed from performing a major work cut into pieces with other things interspersed between movements. I wouldn't want to go back to the old way, but found it novel and fascinating to be transported back into another era that way.

As for Ms. Fleming, John, what I heard was the art of embellishment in the style that goes back to the baroque to rococo period. One can argue about the extent of embellishment - it you've heard Wanda Landowska' recording of Mozart piano sonatas (on the piano) you'll hear a lot that Mozart didn't write - in a way sinmilar to what was expected of performers of the day. There were passages where I thought the embellishment might have been a bit on the heavy side, but it certaInly seemed quite appropriate altogether.
Werner Isler

Corlyss_D
Site Administrator
Posts: 27663
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2005 2:25 am
Location: The Great State of Utah
Contact:

Post by Corlyss_D » Fri Jul 29, 2005 12:01 am

I went to a ballgame. The Raptors clenched a playoff berth tonight. Jubilation abounds.
Corlyss
Contessa d'EM, a carbon-based life form

jbuck919
Military Band Specialist
Posts: 26746
Joined: Wed Jan 28, 2004 10:15 pm
Location: Stony Creek, New York

Post by jbuck919 » Fri Jul 29, 2005 5:45 am

Werner wrote:As for Ms. Fleming, John, what I heard was the art of embellishment in the style that goes back to the baroque to rococo period. One can argue about the extent of embellishment - it you've heard Wanda Landowska' recording of Mozart piano sonatas (on the piano) you'll hear a lot that Mozart didn't write - in a way sinmilar to what was expected of performers of the day. There were passages where I thought the embellishment might have been a bit on the heavy side, but it certaInly seemed quite appropriate altogether.
I may have had a bad pair of ears on and would love to listen to a tape with a bunch of you to convince me it was my imagination, but I do need to make it clear that I know about baroque ornamentation and what I'm talking about is to be distinguished therefrom.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

Ralph
Dittersdorf Specialist & CMG NY Host
Posts: 20996
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2005 6:54 am
Location: Paradise on Earth, New York, NY

Post by Ralph » Fri Jul 29, 2005 6:08 am

Corlyss_D wrote:I went to a ballgame. The Raptors clenched a playoff berth tonight. Jubilation abounds.
*****

Thanks. That stunning upset wasn't reported in this morning's Times. Probably bias on the editors' part.
Image

"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."

Albert Einstein

karlhenning
Composer-in-Residence
Posts: 9801
Joined: Wed Apr 20, 2005 11:12 am
Location: Boston, MA
Contact:

Post by karlhenning » Fri Jul 29, 2005 6:23 am

We saw a tape, oh I don't recall, a few years ago, of Chick Corea and Bobby McFerrin doing (I think doing may be the most precise verb) a Mozart piano concerto. In fact, we chanced on this while channel-surfing, and we arrived at a point where Corea was spinning quite a creative cadenza. I think the event was officially designated "Loosely Mozart" ... but in our memory, it will always be Slightly Mozart.
Karl Henning, PhD
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston, Massachusetts
http://members.tripod.com/~Karl_P_Henning/
http://henningmusick.blogspot.com/
Published by Lux Nova Press
http://www.luxnova.com/

Auntie Lynn
Posts: 1123
Joined: Wed May 21, 2003 10:42 pm

Post by Auntie Lynn » Fri Jul 29, 2005 7:00 am

I started to watch this and got past the first part of the Haffner but when the conductor started blathering on blah blah blah in bad English and an unintelligible accent, they lost me...went over to watch Monty Python on the BBC channel...sorry...

And yes, Avery Fisher looks nice...

Werner
CMG's Elder Statesman
Posts: 4223
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2005 9:23 pm
Location: Irvington, NY

Post by Werner » Fri Jul 29, 2005 9:03 am

Aw c'mon, Auntie - Mr. Langree's accent isn't that bad. Such a Master of Ceremonies shtick is always a bit problematic, and I thought he handled it quite well. I don't know whether you were still watching when he read from Mozart's letter to his father from Paris, complaining of the conceit of the French. That got a big laugh from the audience. Only a Frenchman like Mr. Langree could have got away with that!
Werner Isler

GK
Posts: 467
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2005 8:04 am
Location: Silver Spring, MD

Post by GK » Fri Jul 29, 2005 9:09 am

karlhenning wrote:We saw a tape, oh I don't recall, a few years ago, of Chick Corea and Bobby McFerrin doing (I think doing may be the most precise verb) a Mozart piano concerto. In fact, we chanced on this while channel-surfing, and we arrived at a point where Corea was spinning quite a creative cadenza. I think the event was officially designated "Loosely Mozart" ... but in our memory, it will always be Slightly Mozart.
The library near my former abode had a recording of Corea/McFerrin Mozart concertos (21 and 23?). I thought the playing was OK but not outstanding. The trouble was that they started with McFerrin's crooning routine which was impossible to avoid because the first track condisted of the crooning and the first movement.

Corlyss_D
Site Administrator
Posts: 27663
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2005 2:25 am
Location: The Great State of Utah
Contact:

Post by Corlyss_D » Fri Jul 29, 2005 11:05 pm

Auntie Lynn wrote: when the conductor started blathering on blah blah blah in bad English and an unintelligible accent, they lost me...went over to watch Monty Python on the BBC channel...sorry...
:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

We'll have to go sit in the corner for gross indifference to a Very Important Cultural and Artistic Event.
Corlyss
Contessa d'EM, a carbon-based life form

Ralph
Dittersdorf Specialist & CMG NY Host
Posts: 20996
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2005 6:54 am
Location: Paradise on Earth, New York, NY

Post by Ralph » Sat Jul 30, 2005 5:15 am

Corlyss_D wrote:
Auntie Lynn wrote: when the conductor started blathering on blah blah blah in bad English and an unintelligible accent, they lost me...went over to watch Monty Python on the BBC channel...sorry...
:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

We'll have to go sit in the corner for gross indifference to a Very Important Cultural and Artistic Event.
*****

Langree has proven to be the right music director for a very refreshed Mostly Mozart festival that had become a bit stale.

Personally I don't care for comments about someone's "bad English," especially when that individual is an engaging and original conductor who tries very hard to help his audience enjoy fine music. A very large percentage of American orchestra conductors have been Europeans (with the occasional Asian such as Ozawa) and their English has usually been flawed. But few reached out to concertgoers as Mr. Langree does.
Image

"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."

Albert Einstein

jbuck919
Military Band Specialist
Posts: 26746
Joined: Wed Jan 28, 2004 10:15 pm
Location: Stony Creek, New York

Post by jbuck919 » Sat Jul 30, 2005 8:22 am

Ralph wrote:
Corlyss_D wrote:
Auntie Lynn wrote: when the conductor started blathering on blah blah blah in bad English and an unintelligible accent, they lost me...went over to watch Monty Python on the BBC channel...sorry...
:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

We'll have to go sit in the corner for gross indifference to a Very Important Cultural and Artistic Event.
*****

Langree has proven to be the right music director for a very refreshed Mostly Mozart festival that had become a bit stale.

Personally I don't care for comments about someone's "bad English," especially when that individual is an engaging and original conductor who tries very hard to help his audience enjoy fine music. A very large percentage of American orchestra conductors have been Europeans (with the occasional Asian such as Ozawa) and their English has usually been flawed. But few reached out to concertgoers as Mr. Langree does.
My German and French pronunciation are miles ahead of every other aspect of my (lack of) fluency. I would gladly trade my accent for what linguists call true communicative competence. Mr. Langree's English is in fact quite fluent, as demonstrated in an NPR interview earlier in the day on the subject of that evening's broadcast.

However, this does bring up an interesting point. Many people--including both my parents--cannot understand English spoken oustide a certain family of accents, at least in a broadcast/taped context. They cannot even understand any of the British accents.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

Haydnseek
Posts: 1211
Joined: Tue May 20, 2003 7:59 am
Location: Maryland, USA

Post by Haydnseek » Sat Jul 30, 2005 8:51 am

jbuck919 wrote:My German and French pronunciation are miles ahead of every other aspect of my (lack of) fluency. I would gladly trade my accent for what linguists call true communicative competence. Mr. Langree's English is in fact quite fluent, as demonstrated in an NPR interview earlier in the day on the subject of that evening's broadcast.

However, this does bring up an interesting point. Many people--including both my parents--cannot understand English spoken oustide a certain family of accents, at least in a broadcast/taped context. They cannot even understand any of the British accents.
Your experiences sound familiar. I can pronounce German well and I used to be able to follow serious conversations and read fairly sophisticated texts in German, but I never became fluent at speaking the language. A teacher became angry once out of frustration with my incapacity. I too would trade my good pronounciation for fluency. Come to think of it, my speaking abilities in English are nothing to write home about either. Is it a brain wiring problem or a psychological inhibition, I wonder?

Members of my family also have great difficulty understanding regional accents, especially foreign ones, while I have little difficulty and can even grasp what is said in some dialects.
"The law isn't justice. It's a very imperfect mechanism. If you press exactly the right buttons and are also lucky, justice may show up in the answer. A mechanism is all the law was ever intended to be." - Raymond Chandler

Locked

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests