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Chandos Opera in English

6501 Views 61 Replies 20 Participants Last post by  Sonata
I know many people aren't a fan of translated operas, and it wouldn't be my primary method either. But as a side niche it interests me a bit. So what versions of these (or other English translated) operas do you find to be of reasonably good quality? And if you can't actually understand the words feel free to skip it, it'd only be worthwhile if I could actually understand it, I would prefer the original language if I'm not going to understand anyway :D
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I have the Goodall Ring, but I am less enthusiastic about it. I really prefer Wagner in German.
I have the Goodall Ring and it is unlistenable. Goodall had zero sense of the works drama as evident by his overly plodding tempos. It's downright absurd and ridiculous.
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chacun à son goût

for those who haven't heard it, at least this post tells you it's a Ring unlike any other.

Magisterial would be my review of it.
It is unlike any other. Fine singing ruined by a moronic conductor who sought nothing more than to inflate his ego. How else can one explain his ridiculously slow tempos that make absolutely no dramatic sense - like he knew better than Wagner (which is why I label him moronic). I also think the acclaim his set has received is nothing more than a case of the blind following the blind, or in this case - the deaf following the deaf.
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Sorry can you speak up, I'm not quite getting the point you are struggling to make!

My life just got simpler, I now have a new external source I can goto to have my opinions trashed.

Previously that was my wife's job but I have recently suspected it's a role she seems to be ever more reluctant to play. One of us is obviously growing wiser. :)

PS I don't know that much about Goodall, but most commenters refer to him as self effacing.
Yeah, you have some good points and I apologize. We all like different things for different reasons. I guess more than anything I am so disappointed in the Goodall Ring because it's in English and I would love to have an English recording that I can listen to. It's just sooooooooooooooooo slow. I can't handle it. I keep trying to come back because opinions change over time, but I have a hard time understanding all the acclaim this set has.

I will let your wife get back to it :)

P.S. You live in London....lucky you. Best city in the world.
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For those who are unfamiliar this is a chance to hear Goodall and Rita Hunter in the finale.

WAY WAY WAY WAY WAY TOO SLOW! Misses the dramatic mark by about 1,000 mile.s
Really? Not as far as I'm concerned. Beautifully played and well sung. But each to his own.
It completely misses the drama. His tempos make absolutely no sense when you consider the action that is happening on the stage. It's often said his overly-plodding tempos reveal texture in Wagner's score. Yeah, if a train is moving slowly enough you can count the leaves on a tree.
Goodall's Ring is for people who appreciate singing. Rita Hunter and Alberto Remedios are absolutely fantastic. I don't find it to be particularly slow, except for the Rhinemaiden music. I can imagine someone might start playing Rhinegold and not even get through the first scene and assume the rest is the same. It isn't thankfully.

As for the immolation, that is a scene that requires reflection and quiet power. It's taken much faster by many conductors because the Brunnhildes can't hold out the notes as long as Hunter can.
Yes, but you can find better singing with appropriate conducting (Solti, Karajan, Keilberth, Krauss, Kna to name a few).

It is all the same. I've listened to the entire cycle. All slow. Too slow. Misses the drama. The Immolation Scene is painfully show considering the action that is taking place. It makes absolutely no dramatic sense. Conductors like Boulez and Bohm conduct at the appropriate speeds - everyone else is slower. It is common knowledge that Wagner hated when conductors conducted his works too slowly. He once said something to the effect, while at Rheingold, "If he picked things up, we could be out of here in 2 hours." Slower isn't better. More details isn't better. It's such a common disservice to Wagner's music.
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I generally don't even get through a full scene at a time before wanting to switch to someone else's recording. I also can't really understand what words they're singing half the time, so no real benefit there.
That's why I said unlistenable, and I stand by it. Why would I ever listen to it, when I have over 20 recordings to choose from with better conductors, better singers and better orchestras? Still, I try to return often thinking my feelings will change - they don't.
It also took me a minute to realize that Rita Hunter was singing in English, but I still can't tell what she's singing about. What's the point of singing in translation?
That too. You can barely understanding what's been sung throughout because of the overly-long vocal line Goodall creates. Kna is amazing. I never get the sense that he's plodding along and I never get bored. Making The Ring boring is a huge challenge and one that Goodall fully succeeds at.
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