The Magic of Maria Callas

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lennygoran
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The Magic of Maria Callas

Post by lennygoran » Tue Jan 19, 2021 7:14 am

I check the PBS schedule pretty carefully each month but somehow I missed DVRing this show-fortunately it was available from the PBS channel and we watched it yesterday on our big TV and the roku-we enjoyed it. Len



On Jan. 15, 2021, PBS will present “Great Performances: The Magic of Maria Callas.”

The presentation will highlight the famed diva’s return to the stage in 1964 for an iconic performance of “Tosca.” At the time, Callas had not performed in more than two years and there was concern over the state of her voice when she returned to the Royal Opera House for this particular showcase.

Audiences will get a chance to navigate the second act of Puccini’s famed opera alongside interviews from Thomas Hampson, Kristine Opolais, Rolando Villazón, singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright and Royal Opera House music director Antonio Pappano. The film will also be presented by Metropolitan Opera General manager Peter Gelb.

“Great Performances: The Magic of Maria Callas” will be showcased on Jan. 15 at 10 p.m. local time. The documentary will be presented alongside a similar piece focused on famed pianist Vladimir Horowitz which will be presented on Jan. 22, 2021, also at 10 p.m. local time.

maestrob
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Re: The Magic of Maria Callas

Post by maestrob » Tue Jan 19, 2021 10:02 am

Good morning, Len & Sue!

I was watching 60 minutes this past Sunday, so missed most of the program, but what I saw offered many interesting insights into Maria Callas. Frankly, her best years were from 1949 (Nabucco) through 1959, so her best performances were recorded in other than ideal sound.

I have an Aida from Mexico City in the early 1950's where she takes a high Eb in the triumphal scene instead of the high C marked in the score that knocks your socks off! I read somewhere that Verdi had allowed a certain soprano to do this and that Callas had obtained a copy of the score with that notation, but I can't back that up with a reference this morning.

She had the most unique and magnificent gift in her voice that could impart meaning and a certain pathos (very Greek!) to every note.

Her many attempts at a comeback during the stereo era do not show her at her best. Even the relatively easy aria "Vissi d'arte..." reveals some strain in her top notes that was not there at all earlier. Because of her great acting skills, she still triumphed in 1964, and audiences were wowed at the event. Her stereo recording of Carmen, while revealing her many vocal flaws, still resonates with me because she was still able to convey the core personality of her tortured character.

In her private life, she suffered from terrible insecurity. Very much a Greek tragedy when Onassis spurned her for Jackie Kennedy. But I'm sure you know all about that already. :wink:

barney
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Re: The Magic of Maria Callas

Post by barney » Tue Jan 19, 2021 11:21 am

That 1964 Tosca is justly famous. Not only Callas but Tito Gobbi's Scarpia. It is true she had passed her peak, but she is still magnificent.
There aren't many singers I can recognise after one or two notes, but Callas is certainly one, along with Pavarotti, Wunderlich, Fischer-Dieskau and Sutherland. I'm not saying they're the greatest - well, actually I am - but that they are particularly distinctive.

lennygoran
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Re: The Magic of Maria Callas

Post by lennygoran » Tue Jan 19, 2021 12:15 pm

maestrob wrote:
Tue Jan 19, 2021 10:02 am
I was watching 60 minutes this past Sunday, so missed most of the program, but what I saw offered many interesting insights into Maria Callas.
Brian I DVR 60 minutes every week-next week they're not on because of the superbowl-the whole hour show of Callas is available at the PBS channel-it's part of the Great Performances PBS puts on their stations. Regards, Len

lennygoran
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Re: The Magic of Maria Callas

Post by lennygoran » Tue Jan 19, 2021 12:17 pm

barney wrote:
Tue Jan 19, 2021 11:21 am
That 1964 Tosca is justly famous.
Barney you should try to see that show-it's a full analysis of Act 2. Regards, Len

barney
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Re: The Magic of Maria Callas

Post by barney » Tue Jan 19, 2021 5:44 pm

I tried looking for it Len. Not available in Australia.

lennygoran
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Re: The Magic of Maria Callas

Post by lennygoran » Wed Jan 20, 2021 7:02 am

barney wrote:
Tue Jan 19, 2021 5:44 pm
I tried looking for it Len. Not available in Australia.
Barney good-now you'll have to return to NYC to see it! Regards, Len [fleeing]

maestrob
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Re: The Magic of Maria Callas

Post by maestrob » Wed Jan 20, 2021 9:11 am

lennygoran wrote:
Wed Jan 20, 2021 7:02 am
barney wrote:
Tue Jan 19, 2021 5:44 pm
I tried looking for it Len. Not available in Australia.
Barney good-now you'll have to return to NYC to see it! Regards, Len [fleeing]
:lol:

Good one, Len!

Barney, you'd be welcome any time! :D

barney
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Re: The Magic of Maria Callas

Post by barney » Wed Jan 20, 2021 7:59 pm

Thank you gentlemen. It's definitely on the agenda!

lennygoran
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Re: The Magic of Maria Callas

Post by lennygoran » Thu Jan 21, 2021 6:52 am

barney wrote:
Wed Jan 20, 2021 7:59 pm
Thank you gentlemen. It's definitely on the agenda!
Barney that's great-do tell us more! Regards, Len :D

maestrob
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Re: The Magic of Maria Callas

Post by maestrob » Thu Jan 21, 2021 9:06 am

barney wrote:
Wed Jan 20, 2021 7:59 pm
Thank you gentlemen. It's definitely on the agenda!
Great! :D

Current plans are for our concert halls & theaters to be up and running by Fall 2021. We should be all vaccinated by then.

Long live herd immunity!

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