Breaking news :
Click here for a full length report
Sad news : Italian - American soprano CLAUDIA PINZA died at age 92 on 3rd August. (info Manfred Krugmann, photos courtesy Manfred Krugmann and Charles Mintzer)
Click here to read an obituary
PILAR LORENGAR REMEMBERED + three (!!) 'exclusive' interviews with Madame MATHILDE MARCHESI (see below)
(photos courtesy Charles Mintzer)
Just recently a first-ever biography and a DVD on the legendary Spanish soprano were released.
Click here to read our review and how to order both releases
Click here to see a trailer of the DVD + click here to see a video on a Pilar Lorengar exhibition in Saragosa
As tribute to Lorengar's teacher ANGELES OTTEIN, we uploaded several extremely rare recordings of this once legendary Spanish singer to our youtube channel.
One of the great Spanish singers Angeles OTTEIN was born in 1895 to a Galician family, naturally inclined to music. Her maternal grandfather, José Nieto Méndez, is none other than the famous Nietiño of La casa de la Troya, who played the piccolo in the Santiago de la Ribera de Curros Enríquez. Both Angeles Ottein and her sister, Ofelia Nieto, studied singing at the Madrid Conservatory and the Academy of Lorenzo Simonetti. In 1914, Ofelia - a sensual mezzo soprano - premiered Maruxa by Vives and Angeles - who, to avoid confusion, took the surname Ottein, made her debut in "Marina", demonstrating her extraordinary quality of coloratura soprano. Soon the main Italian theaters followed - her triumphs were great with the Barber of Seville in Rome and Naples - where she sang opposite Lauri Volpi and Tito Schipa.
On her first American tour she moved from Havana to the Metropolitan in New York and renewed her triumphs with Rossini's Rosina and Lucia, alongside Titta Ruffo and Beniamino Gigli.
One should also mention the company of Crabbé and Carlos del Pozo, singer and then famous announcer of Union Radio, which premiered Fantochines, Conrado del Campo; The pelele, by Julio Gómez, and La guitarra, by Angel Barrios. She collaborated with Wanda Landowska and Pablo Casals and, during the Republic, she was frequently applauded in the National Lyric Theater.
Angeles Ottein was called by the Conservatory of Puerto Rico, then directed by Pablo Casals, where she taught for several years until her retirement and return to Madrid .
Angeles Ottein was one of the top international figures of what in Italy they call, very precisely the Spanish vocal school.
Pilar Lorengar and Consuelo Rubio were amongst her most famous students.
Ottein died from Alzheimer at the age on March 12, 1981 in Madrid.
THREE INTERVIEWS WITH MATHILDE MARCHESI !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Click here to read them
NEW BOOK RELEASE : DIVAS, MATHILDE MARCHESI AND HER PUPILS by Roger Neill
(Salvatore en Blanche Marchesi, courtesy Charles Mintzer)
A fascinating look at the relationship between legendary vocal teacher MATHILDE MARCHESI and her numerous star pupils such as Australian diva Nellie Melba is what this new book offers. How did the Marchesi name become a byword internationally for female vocal excellence and operatic success? Click here to read our review and how to order the book.
New fabulous release from Desirée records in their Great Australian Voices series : the Art of JENIFER EDDY
Click here for our review and here to order it
NEW !!!! Musicfromthepast has just released two wonderful CDs featuring the greatest opera singers in rare radio broadcasts.
Click here for our review !!!!
Click here for their website
LOTTE LEHMANN, the accoustic recordings a 4 CD release by Marstonrecords and not to be missed !!!
Lotte Lehmann enjoyed a forty-year career spanning 1910 to 1950 on stage in opera and on the concert platform. Remembered now primarily for her portrayals of Wagner and Strauss roles and as a consummate interpreter of German lieder, her early recordings, not widely known, give us a broader picture of this great artist. It will, perhaps, not come as a surprise to hear Lehmann in her now familiar roles: Sieglinde, Elsa, Eva, and the Marschallin. What really makes these records outstanding is the ease and beauty of Lehmann's vocal production, and the opportunity of hearing her in repertoire not associated with her. We are treated to a generous sprinkling of Mozart, including three duets with baritone Heinrich Schlusnus, as well as arias by Weber, Lortzing, and Nicolai. Although she sings in German, you can hear French opera arias from La Juive, Faust, Mignon, Carmen, Tales of Hoffmann, and Manon. From Italian opera, we hear the Willow Song from Otello and Puccini arias from Manon Lescaut, La Bohème, Tosca, Butterfly, and two rare recordings from Suor Angelica. Other highlights include Lehmann's recording of Tatyana's Letter Scene from Eugene Onegin, an aria from d'Albert's Die toten Augen, and the exquisite aria and duet from Korngold's Die tote Stadt with tenor Richard Tauber. These are among the greatest treasures of the acoustic recording era. The booklet contains a biographical essay by Dr. Daniel Jacobson, Professor of Music at Western Michigan University, an essay on the recordings by Michael Aspinall, and a personal reminiscence by André Tubeuf, who has also provided numerous rare and lovely photos from Lehmann’s early career prior to her emergence on to the international operatic scene. Since there is some extra space at the end of the fourth CD, we are offering a selection of operatic and lieder recordings from her electric Odeon discography, 1927-1932.
Click here to read all about it
Click here to watch the videos of the conference
Johann Hofer wrote the definitive CARL GOLDMARK biography. Click here to order the book
Carl Goldmark was alive one of the most famous Austrian composers of the late 19th century. His opera "The Queen of Sheba premiered at the Vienna Court Opera met with enormous success and eventually reached worldwide acclaim. Until his death in 1915 Goldmark's operas and orchestral works were regularly performed in prestigious venues and in all the major concert halls in the world.
The greatest conductors, famous singers and violinists took Goldmark in their repertoire. But soon after his death, his works slowly vanished from the repertoire not least by the performance ban of Jewish music by the Nazis. The music teacher Johann Hofer has done his research into Goldmark's life consulting information and documents scattered all over the world resulting in the definitive Goldmark biography.
The 285 page opus not only deals with the composer's life and works in great detail but there's also a discography and a chronology of the creations of his operas worldwide. There's an index and greatly welcomed by me a detailed family tree as well. A major addition to the world of composer biographies.
The recording REVELATION of the year, a must have recording for all operetta fans !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
A great new operetta recording JOSEPH BEER's "Polish wedding" has just been released by cpo.
Click here for a review AND sound examples
Click here for the composer's website
A FRENCH OPERA FESTIVAL : a survey of must-have rare recordings
Click here to read about Gounod's opera (French only) + click here to listen to the most famous aria from this opera Nuit resplendissante
Click here to read a review of Félicien David's Herculanum (English)
Click here to read a review of Victorin Joncières's Dimitri (English)
Click here to listen to clips from these new recordings
Click here to read for a review of Saint-Saens Les Barbares
Click here to read for a review of Massenet's Le Mage
Click here for the BRUZANE website
Click here to read all about Maurice Emmanuel and his opera Salamine (French only)
GREAT REDISCOVERY OF A 19th CENTURY OPERA :
Carlo Enrico PASTA, cousin of Giuditta Pasta, at least some sources claim him to be, was an Italian opera composer who fled to Peru and became a sort of Carlo Gomes for the Peruvian nation. His Atahualpa has now been released, read all about it here and get the release before it's sold out as it is a must-have recording for every lover of 19th century opera.
Remarkable and heart-warming : a museum devoted to the tenor AMEDEO BASSI has been opened in Montespertoli. Click here for more information
Exclusive : a few photos from the Amedeo Bassi museum (courtesy and copyright Museo Amedeo Bassi/Francesca Di Natali)