Quelle chance magnifique pour les villazonistas britanniques qui ne manqueront pas de penser aux autres en admirant Rolando !Thanks and kisses from Paris.
Yo nunca habia visto Don Carlo hasta que me compre el dvd grabado en Holanda por Rolando y me encanto, mi problema es que a mi me encanta todo lo que el canta.Ya se que esto es fanatismo pero por mi viva el fanatismo.Sin embargo me gustaria saber si este Don Carloque presentais sadra en dvd
MERCE moi aussi tout ce que chante Rolando m'enchante. j'attends avec impatience cette version de Don Carlo. J'aime beaucoup le DVD, Rolando y est fantastique et tellement émouvant que j'en ai l'estomac serré à chaque fois que je le regarde ....
ayyyyyyy, en estos momentos está empezando........ !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Et maintenant....cela doit être terminé!!!!!!A moins qu'il y ait le décalage horaire ???
It was amazing seeing this again after 18 months. I had to watch it on my tiny computer screen because I don't have BBC4, but it was STILL overwhelming - every bit as extraordinary and intense and moving as I remember. I feel as though I've died and gone to heaven!
The critics in The Guardian and Opera Today were surprisingly harsh about Rolando´s acting. Anne, it seems your opinion is rather different from that - fortunately! Anybody else who saw Carlo yesterday? Liz?
No Anneli I have not seen it yet as I had iickets for a concert here in Belfast. My sister in law saw it and loved it and is "desperate" to see it again (another Rolanditis victim I think) so we will watch the recording tonight (with lots of wine!). I hope to post DVD of my recording to Teresa first thing on Monday. Anne I'm glad you enjoyed it so much when you saw it again. Un abrazo Rolandero to all Villazons. xx
Anneli: I went back and read the reviews from the Guardian and Opera Today, which were from the first night, and it’s true that they weren’t very complimentary about Rolando’s acting. This production really polarised people – both in terms of the production itself and in terms of Rolando’s performance. A lot of different opinions were expressed on both sides. He certainly had some vocal problems during the early part of the run, and these may have adversely affected his acting. I can only speak about the performances I was at, and I went twice. The first time, an announcement was made at the interval to say he wasn’t well but would carry on. He was reticent at the curtain calls, directing the applause away from himself and towards his colleagues, so apparently not very happy with his own performance. However, from my not-very-good seat up in the rafters, I was completely riveted by him – and this was the first time I’d ever seen him in anything, so I didn’t have any sort of pro-Rolando bias. I went with a completely open mind, not really expecting anything. Later in the run, I went back, saw it from a seat very close to the stage, and was totally blown away by him. And at the curtain calls he seemed delighted, throwing his arms up in the air as if he’d just scored the decisive goal at the World Cup final! So it seems that the whole run was a real rollercoaster ride for him. I was almost afraid to watch the recording in case it didn’t live up to my memory of it, but it did in every sense. The entire cast is brilliant – not a single weak link, as far as I’m concerned – and Pappano has such a feeling for this score. He was simply born to conduct Verdi. Anyway, some people will love it, some will hate it, others will fall somewhere in the middle. I’m just glad it was recorded so that: a) I can watch it forever, and b) people will be able to make up their own minds, one way or another, without having to rely on a handful of reviews from the first night.
thank you very much Anne for your comments,it is always very interesting, et plein de sensibilité.Je meurs d'envie de voir ce Don Carlo, qui a du être une performance pour Rolando avec dèjà ses problèmes de voix.Natalie Dessay parlait récemment du plus mauvais souvenir qu'elle avait eu c'était à la Scala de Milan, (elle a du être sifflé),elle commençait a avoir des problèmes de voix, c'était juste avant la découverte du premier kyste sur ses cordes vocales, et cela a été un stress terrible avant la représentation, car elle savait qu'elle ne pourrait pas être au top.
Il se peut que le ROH ait filmé plusieurs représentations, comme cela se fait couramment, afin de garder le meilleur pour composer ce "live".Comme, effectivement, on a pu lire (et entendre) du "très bon" et du "plus difficile"concernant ce Don Carlo, il est probable que ce que nous verrons sera un montage de plusieurs spectacles.L'essentiel est de pouvoir admirer notre Rolando dans cette production récente, entouré de brillants artistes.
I have now had a chance to see this BBC4 recording. Like Anne I read the critics comments and I must admit some of them are harsh.Perhaps they concentated too much on the "comeback" angle or indeed on the role of Carlo itself? My first thoughts are that despite Don Carlo being the title character this opera is NOT in the normal way a vehicle for the tenor - "glitzy" or otherwise. It concerns 5 complicated characters and I think the director's comparison with Shakespeare is entirely apt. The strongest Act (Act 4) doesn't even involve the tenor! This is a mighty work and takes a strong story - far removed from the fairly daft story lines of other operas - and develops it through masterly characterisation. It could equally be named "Philippe" or "Posa" or "Strange events in the Spanish Court". In this performance all 5 main soloists are very strong. Rolando is not outstanding but for 2 very good reasons. 1. Verdi created 5 almost equally strong characters and gave each of them glorious music. 2. Rolando was (unlike in the Amsterdam version) on stage with his equals in talent and he had the humility to realise this. His performance was totally convincing- with maybe some strain in his voice at times - but hey! Pavarotti was booed at LaScala for cracking notes in this role which must be a nightmare to sing moving as it does over and over again from lyrical to dramatic and back. It is a huge testament to Rolando's performance that one is left feeling huge compassion for the non heroic Carlo as he is alternately dominated and manipulated. (It is of course impossible to judge a voice solely from a recording and Anne has already commented on the live performance). I saw Jonas Kaufman at ROH in this production in September but am still trying to work out what he was trying to convey (though his singing was very fine)- perhaps a more cerebral Carlo? .If there is a superstar here it is VERDI - this opera is a masterpiece and I find it overwhelms even more than individual performers no matter how talented. I have only recently discovered opera and have watched several dozen (mostly on DVD) in order to learn. To date this is by far my favourite opera and my plan is (as well as following Rolando's career of course) to see as many performances of this great work as possible.
Catherine: Only two performances were recorded, as far as I know – the final one, which was also transmitted live to big screens around the country, and an earlier one, where Rolando, by his own admission, was not at his best. So I think the BBC4 broadcast must have been largely taken from the final performance of the run.
Thank you, Liz. You’ve really got me thinking. I agree, of course, that this is an ensemble piece and not a vehicle for tenor. Nevertheless, when I saw the ROH production again with Kaufmann, the bottom dropped out of it for me, which really surprised me – precisely because it is such an ensemble. Much as I love Rolando, I wasn’t expecting a change of Don Carlo to make such a huge difference – especially seeing as three of the original principals (Furlanetto, Poplavskaya and Keenlyside) were still in place. But although I admire Kaufmann hugely as an artist, his Don Carlo was (for me) like a gaping hole at the centre of the opera. (To be fair, I also think this had a lot to do with Semyon Bychkov’s reading of the score, which was very different from Pappano’s. However, I have neither the knowledge nor the musical vocabulary to put this into words; it’s simply something I “felt”.)With regard to what JK was trying to convey with his performance, he said in an interview that he viewed the character as what today we would term a clinical depressive and that this explained his mood swings, i.e. the fact that he’s raring to go off and defend Flanders one minute and sunk in a funk the next. It’s a valid interpretation, I suppose, but it doesn’t work for me because I don’t think it’s particularly interesting to have a protagonist who’s driven by a chemical imbalance as opposed to his own conflicting emotions.My reservations about Kaufmann have made me try to analyse what it was about Rolando’s performance that so swept me away. Because, for me, he is outstanding in this production – not in the sense that he upstages the other cast members, which he clearly doesn’t, but in that he allows them to shine. He may not be on stage the whole time, but he’s the catalyst for all that happens, the pivot around which the other characters turn. Philip, Elisabeth and Posa are all so self-controlled, so practised at hiding their feelings, so beholden to duty and what they perceive as the “greater good”. And then there’s Carlo – vulnerable, volatile, completely driven by emotion, totally lacking in self-control. He’s like the spark in the tinderbox. Rolando brought all that out, both vocally and dramatically. But Kaufmann’s Don Carlo didn’t have any of those qualities; he was too “solid”; there wasn’t enough of a contrast. And, as a result, I found that certain key moments centring on other characters – Philip’s soliloquy, for example – were somehow diminished.Anyway, I’ll shut up now. So many people have such strong and conflicting opinions about this opera and about how Don Carlo should be played/sung. You really could write several books about it, which must be a testament to its greatness.
Many thanks to Liz and Anne for these interesting comments. I am waiting for our fascinating Rolando/Don Carlo so impatiently....
Anne, I was very interested in your comments. I think the key is very much that the opera itself is an inspired work therefore it is like trying to interpret Shakespeare's Hamlet. Each brings his own interpretation.I am old enough to remember the Guilgud versus Olivier debates Guilgud's (spelling?) perfect speaking of the verse versus Olivier's dramatic genius - each has his supporters. AND these debates continue to these days - I'm to be subjected (by daughter) to David Tennant's interpretation of Hamlet on TV at Christmas.....
wow, Anne, Liz you are some opera-analysts!!! My true and sincere compliments for that. I think, Liz, that you learned your opera lessons very well, for being a novice, you are some novice! Anne you gave a perfect psychological description of the content of the opera and the characters involved.I have never seen Don Carlo, but I am sure the opportunity will be there soon through video, TV or maybe live performance.But I know already now that I will never be able to give such comments as yours. Bravissime!
Je viens de relire mon commentaire sur Don Carlo de Rolando à la ROH, je ne voudrais pas qu'il y ait confusion, si je meurs d'envie de voir ce Don Carlo, c'est que je suis très intéressée de voir comment Rolando l'a interprété quelques années après Amsterdam, et non pas pour voir comment il s'en sorti avec ses soucis de voix.Ann et Liz quelle analyse, je suis très très admirative, merci de vos commentaires, moi j'en suis incapable
Thank you Mariu, Daniele and Catherine for the kind comments. While it is woderful to discuss on the Blog think how much more wonderful it will be to meet up in 2010 at one (many?) of Rolando's performances and discuss in person - and in several languages! Something to look forward to indeed. xx