View Poll Results: Who sang it better?

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  • Muzio

    6 54.55%
  • Spani

    5 45.45%
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Thread: SOPRANO TOURNAMENT (By Request): Muzio vs Spani

  1. #1
    Senior Member Bonetan's Avatar
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    Default SOPRANO TOURNAMENT (By Request): Muzio vs Spani

    Claudia Muzio, Italy, 1889-1936 (defeated Olivero 14-6)

    SOPRANO TOURNAMENT: (By Request): Muzio vs Olivero



    Hina Spani, Argentina, 1896-1969



    'Ebben? Ne andrò lontana' from Catalani's La Wally.

    Who's singing did you prefer and why?

  2. #2
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    Ok so go kick me in the corner but I like Spani's better than Muzio's. She has an Olivero sound and probably will annoy those who don't go for glottal attacks. But her drama was more emotional and expressive.

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    Senior Member MAS's Avatar
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    I respond better to Mme. Muzio's darker hued voice than to Mme. Spani's slighter one, though both sing impeccably. Mme. Muzio also has a more melancholy quality which fit well with this aria's sad lyric. Both singers also have a not unattractive quick vibrato which adds a poignancy to their performance.

    I vote for Muzio because I find her singing more affecting.

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  6. #4
    Senior Member BalalaikaBoy's Avatar
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    I have no idea who Hina Spani is, but if she got even one vote against Claudia Muzio from a reasonably knowledgeable afficionado, she must be really good. I'll have to give her a listen.

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    More info on Hina Spani:

    http://www.cantabile-subito.de/Sopra...ani__hina.html


    John B. Steane in The Grand Tradition: Seventy Years of Singing on Record, 1900-1970: "She was an artist of great distinction and made what on the whole is the most satisfying series of soprano records to come out of Italy in the inter-war years."

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    Senior Member Woodduck's Avatar
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    I wouldn't expect anyone to surpass Muzio in this morbidly melancholic bit of verismo, but danged if Hina Spani didn't outsing her, with focused tone, free, brilliant high notes, a pure, intense line, superb control of dynamics, and the imagination to put her impressive vocal resources to superb use. I don't think either singer lifts this aria to the level Callas does; her interpretation is full of telling detail and evokes an extraordinary sense of loneliness. But Spani comes as close as anyone I've heard, and sings as well as anyone could, certainly more consistently and steadily than Callas. I haven't heard much of Spani before now, but I'll be keeping an ear out for her from now on.
    Last edited by Woodduck; Aug-02-2021 at 06:11.

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  11. #7
    Senior Member Woodduck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Concertantek364 View Post
    More info on Hina Spani:

    http://www.cantabile-subito.de/Sopra...ani__hina.html


    John B. Steane in The Grand Tradition: Seventy Years of Singing on Record, 1900-1970: "She was an artist of great distinction and made what on the whole is the most satisfying series of soprano records to come out of Italy in the inter-war years."
    Thanks! What an impressive resume she had. Based on what we can hear in the aria from La Wally, I can well believe that she was outstandingly good in most of her incredibly wide repertoire. They just don't make 'em like that any more!

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  13. #8
    Senior Member Neo Romanza's Avatar
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    I don’t see a ‘who cares’ option.
    "When a man is in despair, it means that he still believes in something." - Dmitri Shostakovich

  14. #9
    Senior Member Woodduck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neo Romanza View Post
    I don’t see a ‘who cares’ option.
    Who cares? ..............

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    Senior Member Tsaraslondon's Avatar
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    Two wonderful singers and two wonderful versions of this melanchly piece. I fully expected to be going for Muzio, but found myself preferring Spani. Basically, I agree with everything Woodduck said. Callas is imprinted on my mind in this aria, and Spani comes closest to her in evoking a sort of sighing loneliness.

    Spani it is.
    "It's not enough to have a beautiful voice." Maria Callas

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  18. #11
    Senior Member Dimace's Avatar
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    Spani, without many thoughts. The first recording is VERY BAD as sound quality and personally I can't make judgments under such circumstances. La Wally is GREAT opera and Maria made it even greater. (Claudia is big voice. I would kill to have her today singing. What a level those days and what misery nowadays.)
    „Es gibt drei Arten von Pianisten: jüdische Pianisten, homosexuelle Pianisten -- und schlechte Pianisten.“ V. Horowitz

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  20. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dimace View Post
    Spani, without many thoughts. La Wally is GREAT opera and Maria made it even greater. (Claudia is big voice.
    By "Maria made it even greater" you mean Callas? The fact is, she never sang La Wally on stage, and the 1954 EMI/UK Columbia recording of the aria "Ebben? Ne andrò lontana" is the only documented occasion she sang it throughout her entire career.
    Last edited by Concertantek364; Aug-02-2021 at 10:46.

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  22. #13
    Senior Member Tsaraslondon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Concertantek364 View Post
    By "Maria made it even greater" you mean Callas? The fact is, she never sang La Wally on stage, and the 1954 EMI/UK Columbia recording of the aria "Ebben? Ne andrò lontana" is the only documented occasion she sang it throughout her entire career.
    Indeed, but, as is her wont, she made her mark on that one aria like no other, so I understand what Dimace is saying. Of the two excellent versions above, it is, surprisinly perhaps, Spani's version that comes closest to her achingly sad loneliness.
    "It's not enough to have a beautiful voice." Maria Callas

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tsaraslondon View Post
    Indeed, but, as is her wont, she made her mark on that one aria like no other, so I understand what Dimace is saying. Of the two excellent versions above, it is, surprisinly perhaps, Spani's version that comes closest to her achingly sad loneliness.
    Since we're only comparing different renditions of a particular aria here, it would have been more accurate to say that '"Ebben? Ne andrò lontana" is a great aria and (whoever) made it even greater'. Callas' version is indeed a marvellous one, but Muzio's and Spani's are in their different ways at least as remarkable.

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    Another, albeit more detailed article on Hina Spani's life and career, written by Bob Rideout, a regular poster on Opera-L:

    https://bob-opera.weebly.com/hina-spani.html

    According to an interview conducted by The Record Collector, La Wally is in Spani's stage repertoire and it is her favourite operatic role after Cio-Cio-San.
    Last edited by Concertantek364; Aug-02-2021 at 12:37.

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