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May. 31st, 2008

How could I possibly have lived 34 years without knowing Strauss' Four Last Songs? I hadn't realized how much poorer my life had been!

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( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
fj
May. 31st, 2008 11:02 pm (UTC)
How? I'll Tell You How...
Obviously somebody didn't watch the TV show of Elisabeth Schwarzkopf giving masterclasses broadcast on public TV in European countries in the 80s just to watch nervous hypersensitive vocal students cry. Because that's how I know about the Vier Letzte Lieder.
spwebdesign
May. 31st, 2008 11:10 pm (UTC)
Oh, wow, I would never have the balls (assuming I were a soprano with balls) to sing the ultimate soprano songs in front of Elisabeth Schwarzkopf unless I was an honest self-evaluator and 100% sure of my technique and artistry! And even then…

That's like me singing one of the Mahler Rückert Lieder in front of José van Dam! Oh, wait, I did that, and was appropriately panned in the Boston Globe. (Mercifully, they omitted my name from the review.)

BTW, my first voice teacher at Amherst was a pupil of Schwarzkopf's. I think she must have been scarred, because all she ever did when I sang was smile a huge vacuous grin and nod her head.
fj
May. 31st, 2008 11:18 pm (UTC)
Oh, wow, I would never have the balls (assuming I were a soprano with balls) to sing the ultimate soprano songs in front of Elisabeth Schwarzkopf unless I was an honest self-evaluator and 100% sure of my technique and artistry!

They all looked like fragile art nerds who had indeed been on the path of continuous praise for their amazing talent and constant discipline to develop it all their lives until, well, the only person left to teach them was Ms. Schwarzkopf. And many couldn't handle singing 3 notes and being corrected, 4 notes and being corrected, a whole bar and being corrected, half the verse and being corrected, starting over with 3 notes and being corrected, in front of a theater audience and cameras. It was like watching hard boiled eggs making contact with a tennis racket and then finding out they had very runny yolks.
am0
Jun. 1st, 2008 08:14 am (UTC)
The Sopranos
It is removal of the balls that creates a boy soprano.
spwebdesign
Jun. 1st, 2008 08:44 am (UTC)
Re: The Sopranos
No, not even remotely true. It is the fact of being a boy, having a nice singing voice, and not yet having hit puberty that makes a boy soprano. It is the removal of the balls before puberty that makes a boy soprano a castrato, and there haven't been castrati in music for about a hundred years.
(Deleted comment)
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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