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that looks like the sort of tosh you criticise Boulez for
No, she's right. I taught myself Latin, then had a private tutor, then read Classics at university. There's no doubt that my expensively educated contemporaries were far better informed than I was thanks to Eton, Westminster, King's Canterbury etc., but I personally wouldn't have developed the love for Latin literature that I did if someone had been forcing it down my throat from any early age. Not that the 'love' survived Oxford's insane workload either, but then that's just my dilettante nature. ;)

Interestingly, I think the Aeneid may be the only ancient (Western, pagan) work of literature which has never been off the school curriculum since it was written- that's one heck of a buildup of schoolboyish resentment! :lol:
 

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This is the best DVD. It has a fire breathing horse ...



... and some damn fine singing as well :devil:
...And Bryan Hymel is a sexy looking guy if you like them a little on the heavy side (which I do :)) but I've yet to be convinced that he is the saviour of the French heroic tenor repertoire. I have heard his album 'Heroïque', on which the Sigurd aria was quite well sung, but based on that CD I don't find him an exciting singer overall: stiff, unexpressive and sometimes with a bit of a wobble on the loud/high notes. A shame.

Also if it's the production I'm thinking of, it had some strange multicoloured tunics which were possibly on loan from Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dream Coat, not much to do with either Virgil's time or Berlioz's. ;)

 

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...And Bryan Hymel is a sexy looking guy if you like them a little on the heavy side (which I do :)) but I've yet to be convinced that he is the saviour of the French heroic tenor repertoire. I have heard his album 'Heroïque', on which the Sigurd aria was quite well sung, but based on that CD I don't find him an exciting singer overall: stiff, unexpressive and sometimes with a bit of a wobble on the loud/high notes. A shame.

Also if it's the production I'm thinking of, it had some strange multicoloured tunics which were possibly on loan from Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dream Coat, not much to do with either Virgil's time or Berlioz's. ;)

It was supposed to be Kaufmann singing Énée but he cancelled. I wasn't bothered as I wasn't interested in the tenor role but Fabio Capitanucci (Chorèbe), Anna Caterina Antonacci (Cassandre) and Eva-Maria Westbroek (Didon) were superb.
 

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Oh come on Blair! Hating Virgil was a passion for generations of British schoolboys! we were taught by an old boy who might just have known Virgil himself. We used to amuse ourselves by making chalk marks on the back of his gown as he passed us. Fond memories!
Quite a lot of schoolboys I know hated Shakespeare too. Schoolchildren aren't necessarily the arbiters of good taste. Many of them like Justin Bieber, for instance.
 

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Quite a lot of schoolboys I know hated Shakespeare too. Schoolchildren aren't necessarily the arbiters of good taste. Many of them like Justin Bieber, for instance.
. . .or even like, going down a couple of notches, 'Jethro Tull.'
 

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It was supposed to be Kaufmann singing Énée but he cancelled. I wasn't bothered as I wasn't interested in the tenor role but Fabio Capitanucci (Chorèbe), Anna Caterina Antonacci (Cassandre) and Eva-Maria Westbroek (Didon) were superb.
Sorry, I forget there are other Fächer, especially in this repertoire. ;)
 

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It is worth noting that Berlioz wanted saxhorns & valved cornets in much of Troyens and it makes all the difference when you hear them in the piece. Certainly a modern horn sounds incredible but it isn't HIP :) When it came to orchestration, Berlioz really knew what he was doing.
I prefer the cornets in the Symphonie Fantastique too.
 

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Don't judge me for this, but I've never tackled this work. Could someone give me any suggestions for a good recording?
Perhaps it is because of my classical way of listening (no frills, just an Arcam CD player + Arcam amplifier + 2 Von Schweickert speakers), but I hear tremendous differences between the Philips analogue recording of Davis 1, the live LSO digital recording of Davis 2 and the glorious Decca recording of Dutoit. The Philips recording is nice for the voices but lacking in orchestral depth. The LSO recording is live, with understandable balance problems, distracting sounds etc. as it should be, because it is a live recording... But the Decca recording is another class, top of the bill when it comes to spaciousness, balance, atmosphere. There is a soprano miscast in the Dutoit recording, but my attention is elegantly directed towards the orchestral details. There you go with Berlioz from strength to strength.
 

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Perhaps it is because of my classical way of listening (no frills, just an Arcam CD player + Arcam amplifier + 2 Von Schweickert speakers), but I hear tremendous differences between the Philips analogue recording of Davis 1, the live LSO digital recording of Davis 2 and the glorious Decca recording of Dutoit. The Philips recording is nice for the voices but lacking in orchestral depth. The LSO recording is live, with understandable balance problems, distracting sounds etc. as it should be, because it is a live recording... But the Decca recording is another class, top of the bill when it comes to spaciousness, balance, atmosphere. There is a soprano miscast in the Dutoit recording, but my attention is elegantly directed towards the orchestral details. There you go with Berlioz from strength to strength.
I'm afraid I don't think Dutoit comes within a mile of Davis's understanding of the score, of his affinity with Berlioz. Nor does he thrill the way Davis does in so many important passages. I'll take performance over sound quality any time, and, believe me, anmhe, the sound quality on both Davis sets is more than acceptable.
 

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I'm afraid I don't think Dutoit comes within a mile of Davis's understanding of the score, of his affinity with Berlioz. Nor does he thrill the way Davis does in so many important passages. I'll take performance over sound quality any time, and, believe me, anmhe, the sound quality on both Davis sets is more than acceptable.
. . . all of which I agree with- except for the sound quality part: the sound quality on the 1969 Philips Davis/Covent Garden performance is stellar in every way.

In fact, I vastly prefer the sound engineering on it to the Dutoit when it comes to the ambient acoustic and to the clarity, sheen, and clear separation of instruments and chorus for the densely-textured climaxes.

The whole package deal of the Davis/Covent Garden eclipses any of the competition for me- except for the "Royal Hunt and Storm" of Davis' LSO endeavor- which takes the cake for heroism and exuberance when it comes to the choral climaxes and horns- which are miked up front and will just blow your house down.
 
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