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Thread: Which opera would you recommend to a beginner?

  1. #106
    Senior Member Ravndal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by guythegreg View Post
    You found Magic Flute more understandable than La Boheme? Now I know I'm nuts ... that makes absolutely no sense. Who can understand Magic Flute? I don't even understand it now. (I mean, I have high standards for "understanding," too ... you have to be able to explain it to an 8-year-old.)
    Quote Originally Posted by myaskovsky2002 View Post
    Both are nice. La Bohème was written by Danielle Steel (the only occasion she didn't put a happy ending, but the story is still stupid) then is simple, because she is dumb. Lol. The magic flute is longer, you have less tragedy, wonderful story, for smarter people, not for dummies as La Bohème. La Bohème was my first opera too. I was 6. I liked it. I think it is a good start. The story is pretty simple, very Puccini, with a woman as a victim (i suppose you know the story of his maid, Doria Manfredi). La povera Mimi...Me chiamano Mimi... I am a wh¥£#e The guy just want to f%##k me.

    Martin

    Well. The version i saw of La Boheme, was a "Modern twist". I understood what the main story was about, but so many random things happened, and i remember i scratched my head so many times during that opera. At the end, i was wondering wtf did i just watch.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6oBPTPdDK_o

    maybe i got everything wrong though. Overthinking it, perhaps...
    Last edited by Ravndal; Jun-21-2012 at 00:10.
    “I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.”
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  3. #107
    Senior Member guythegreg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by myaskovsky2002 View Post
    Both are nice. La Bohème was written by Danielle Steel (the only occasion she didn't put a happy ending, but the story is still stupid) then is simple, because she is dumb. Lol. The magic flute is longer, you have less tragedy, wonderful story, for smarter people, not for dummies as La Bohème. La Bohème was my first opera too. I was 6. I liked it. I think it is a good start. The story is pretty simple, very Puccini, with a woman as a victim (i suppose you know the story of his maid, Doria Manfredi). La povera Mimi...Me chiamano Mimi... I am a wh¥£#e The guy just want to f%##k me.

    Martin
    too funny - danielle Steele, indeed! lol honestly though, if you just see a good traditional performance of La Boheme, there should always be newlyweds in the audience. It's TOO romantic.

  4. #108
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    Quote Originally Posted by guythegreg View Post
    too funny - danielle Steele, indeed! lol honestly though, if you just see a good traditional performance of La Boheme, there should always be newlyweds in the audience. It's TOO romantic.
    It is nice... I agree, but is perfect for a beginner. The story is simple... The special effects didn't exist by then... They were replaced by TEARS!!!!!! Larmoyant opera. I think I saw this opera about 7 times, usually in order to initiate a friend. The arias are catchy. Puccini was the creator of a unique technique: the voice and the orchestra play the same melody. People like this technique.... So do I sometimes...
    I love especially the aria of Rodolfo..."che gelida manina" , just before Mimi speaks about herself "Me chiamano Mimi". This two arias are beautifully written.

    Notice his technique, the voice and the orchestra play the same music. Tipically Puccini. This is a whole new technique I have never seen before.

    I have two versions on CD: Renata Tebaldi (this CD replaces the LP my mother gave me when I was 8) and a version sung in Russian that sounds awesome. On DVD I have Pavarotti and I had the new version sung by Anna Netrebko, corny, awful, I gave it to a friend.







    Roberto Alagna is awesome.

    Martin
    Last edited by myaskovsky2002; Jun-21-2012 at 02:29.

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    Senior Member Vesteralen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by myaskovsky2002 View Post
    I saw your link.... Or it is a mistake or you are joking.

    Martin
    Got it in two!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ravndal View Post
    Well. The version i saw of La Boheme, was a "Modern twist". I understood what the main story was about, but so many random things happened, and i remember i scratched my head so many times during that opera. At the end, i was wondering wtf did i just watch.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6oBPTPdDK_o

    maybe i got everything wrong though. Overthinking it, perhaps...
    I think you are right, this version is completely out of the blue! Did she have cancer? With Radiotherapy? Kind of... weird...Too "modern" for me. I think to appreciate La Bohème you should keep it in the IXXth century. Of course, this is just my humble opinion. Values are not the same. Nowadays if the girl choses to go with another guy for a while is not a sin any more.
    This is a IXXth century story.

    Martin
    Last edited by myaskovsky2002; Jun-21-2012 at 15:15.

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  8. #111
    Senior Member Bardamu's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=myaskovsky2002;316051]
    Quote Originally Posted by elgars ghost View Post

    I am absolutely in love, passionately in love with Onieguin, I would feel guilty and extremely subjective suggesting Onieguin. For a beginner.... I think you have to acquire the Russian soul. I read many many Russian books before listening to Onieguin, furthermore, I saw the opera 5 times before buying the LP! And after the CDS (4 versions) and the DVDs (3 versions) as you can see in my musical collection at www3.bell.net/svp1. About Boris... No, it is a difficult opera, Igor, easier, nice arias (not as deep as Boris). Tsarskaya neviesta (the tsar's bride...would be a big mistake), it is a difficult opera.... Better would be the story of tsar Saltan, a nice fairy tale, nice!

    Now we are discussing about my "domain". The kind of opera I like and I know the most. Yolanta (Tchaikovsky) could be a nice choice. It is short, romantic. I'll post you a reference soon.


    Martin, totally in love with Tatiana (my wife would be jealous, LOL)
    Acquiring the Russian soul seems quite hardcore and time consuming :-)
    If it matter a few months ago I went to a russian icons show.
    At the end of it there was projected this animated movie by Ivan Ivanov-Vano and Yuriy Norshteyn based on the Legend of invisible city of Kitezh tale that Rimsky-Korsakov put in opera form:


    Back to the suggestions I'm very happy you cited Iolanta.
    That was the opera by Tchaikovsky that more struck my attention (more than Pique Dame).
    It and Tsar's Bride are on my Amazon cart for a future purchase.
    Thank to you myaskovsky2002 and elgars ghost.
    Last edited by Bardamu; Jun-22-2012 at 14:33.

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    http://www.amazon.com/Nicolai-Rimsky...s+bride+Rimsky[QUOTE=Bardamu;318248]
    Quote Originally Posted by myaskovsky2002 View Post
    Acquiring the Russian soul seems quite hardcore and time consuming :-)
    If it matter a few months ago I went to a russian icons show.
    At the end of it there was projected this animated movie by Ivan Ivanov-Vano and Yuriy Norshteyn based on the Legend of invisible city of Kitezh tale that Rimsky-Korsakov put in opera form:


    Back to the suggestions I'm very happy you cited Iolanta.
    That was the opera by Tchaikovsky that more struck my attention (more than Pique Dame).
    It and Tsar's Bride are on my Amazon cart for a future purchase.
    Thank to you myaskovsky2002 and elgars ghost.
    I'm glad I was useful for once! At your service!

    But be careful about the version of Tsarskaya Nevesta (Tsar's bride). Avoid Gergiev, buy the older one with Galina Vizhnestkaya, this makes a big difference.




    Martin
    Last edited by myaskovsky2002; Jun-22-2012 at 17:29.

  11. #113
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    [QUOTE=Bardamu;318248]
    Quote Originally Posted by myaskovsky2002 View Post
    Acquiring the Russian soul seems quite hardcore and time consuming :-)
    If it matter a few months ago I went to a russian icons show.
    At the end of it there was projected this animated movie by Ivan Ivanov-Vano and Yuriy Norshteyn based on the Legend of invisible city of Kitezh tale that Rimsky-Korsakov put in opera form:




    Back to the suggestions I'm very happy you cited Iolanta.
    That was the opera by Tchaikovsky that more struck my attention (more than Pique Dame).
    It and Tsar's Bride are on my Amazon cart for a future purchase.
    Thank to you myaskovsky2002 and elgars ghost.

    Kitezh is a wonderful opera... This is a melting pot. I bought this dvd one month ago. Not the very best, but the orchestra and the singers are ok.
    Last edited by myaskovsky2002; Jun-22-2012 at 20:55.

  12. #114
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    I am brand new to this forum. I have been a Puccini fan since I first heard his arias in "A Room With a View". I was so inspired that I went to Florence and rented a penthouse in a hotel over the Arno. I adore Puccini. The other day, I was on youTube and never having heard Wagner before, I clicked on......a rendition of "Liebestod" by Kirsten Flagstod. I was absolutely STUNNED. I felt as if my heart had exploded. I listened to it again and again, by other, Nillson, Callas, Stemme, but for me Flagstod is a GODDESS. I now dream of Liebestod....I hear her singing it in my dreams. Last night I went to sleep listening to Tristan and Isolde conducted by Beecham with Melchior and Flatstod and....I am now beginning, BEGINNING to understand the depth of Wagner. For me now, I would say that all of my years as a Puccini lover and Verdi appreciator have given me the epitome of musical listening pleasure, but Wagner is giving me a spiritual experience. He is on a whole different level. I am not saying better.....I am saying different. I do recommend these videos, but please listen to 1936 Kirsten Flagstod's Liebestod, Covent Garden conducted by Reiner.


    [/QUOTE]

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    Senior Member Couchie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by azyuwish View Post
    For me now, I would say that all of my years as a Puccini lover and Verdi appreciator have given me the epitome of musical listening pleasure, but Wagner is giving me a spiritual experience. He is on a whole different level. I am not saying better.....I am saying different. I do recommend these videos, but please listen to 1936 Kirsten Flagstod's Liebestod, Covent Garden conducted by Reiner.
    I feel the same way.... very few other composers have tried to deliver works of a scale equal to Wagner's and none with the emotional, philosophical, and musical breadth of Wagner.... he is simply in another league.

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    Senior Member guythegreg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by azyuwish View Post
    I was so inspired that I went to Florence and rented a penthouse in a hotel over the Arno.
    What a great story!! That's just my attitude about life ... you see something you like, grab it with both hands! I'm a little sad myself, with so many Wagnerliebhabers here I feel like a kid trying to see out a steamed up window, but I'll try the Flagstad, who knows. Maybe it'll be my breakthrough Wagner moment!

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    Senior Member sospiro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by azyuwish View Post
    I have been a Puccini fan since I first heard his arias in "A Room With a View". I was so inspired that I went to Florence and rented a penthouse in a hotel over the Arno.
    I love that! And can understand it.

    After the opera film Rigoletto a Mantova was broadcast



    I went to Mantova & visited some of the locations. My avatar was the sign outside the 'house' where the statue of Rigoletto is on here. The face of the jester is very sad & the statue is very poignant.

    Annie

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    Senior Member powerbooks's Avatar
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    During my stint in two different companies for the past decade, I gathered two groups of colleagues who had never been to an opera before and went to the Met for their first opera experience. The first one is Le Boheme, with red eyes from quite a few ladies afterwards. Some of them became opera fans ever since!

    The second time I chose Figaro, and the reaction was almost as memorable as the Boheme, especially when they realized the duet from the movie The Shawshank Redemption, but more of them were excited about the story line which is magnificent!

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    Senior Member sospiro's Avatar
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    I don't think there can be a 'right' or 'wrong' opera to start with.

    A friend of mine who knew absolutely nothing about opera, was channel hopping one day, and found this on an Arts channel



    She watched in delight & couldn't believe that this was opera. Since then she has become an enthusiastic and knowledgeable fan.
    Annie

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  23. #120
    Super Moderator mamascarlatti's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by myaskovsky2002 View Post
    But be careful about the version of Tsarskaya Nevesta (Tsar's bride). Avoid Gergiev, buy the older one with Galina Vizhnestkaya, this makes a big difference.

    Martin
    I love the Gergiev version, one of my favourite CDs.
    Natalie

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