Maestro Riccardo Frizza is an Italian conductor and a charming, pleasant human being. But don’t take my word for it, read the interview he gave me here or click on his photo and judge for yourself. Find out why he thinks “music is an exchange of effort and energy” and a lot, lot more. Enjoy!
Opera inspires and so do beautiful buildings. Both come together in harmony and exquisite proportions at the Opera House in Dresden, Germany.
I was inspired to write the poem below after a performance of Rossini’s opera William Tell and the beauty of the Dresdner opera is a gorgeous tribute to the power of music.
I saw the fairies and felt the caves,
touched the woods
and crossed the waves,
swam through the rain,
glided the storm and surfed the pain
engraved in the music form.
I felt the call of the night
in clear arpeggios of fountains dried
and in the heat of the fight
I stumbled, I cried
I broke the crystalline light.
In peril, I hovered over luminous voices
but fearless I rode the ocean
and stared at my choices.
And then, just closing my eyes,
I saw the music
in flowers of motion,
rainbows and skies.
And the heavens opened
crushing my heart,
leaving the silence to tear me apart.
Poem by myself (Margarida Mota-Bull, nom de plume M G da Mota) / Photograph of the Dresdner Opera courtesy of Malcolm Bull
Master Singers: Advice from the Stage is a book by pianist Lucy Mauro and tenor Donald George. It is a compilation of opinions, advice and experiences by some of the most famous opera singers in the world today. Some of the singers are names that need no introduction: Jonas Kaufmann, Joseph Calleja, Joyce DiDonato, Lawrence Brownlee to name only a few.
I enjoyed it immensely and had the pleasure of writing a review. It was like going through a long, collective interview with lots of interesting people. I’d recommend it not only if you’re a young singer at the beginning of your career but also if you’re just a keen reader who loves music, opera and would like a glimpse into the world of some of today’s greatest operatic stars. Masters Singers is to my mind a must in the bookshelves or kindle collections of any self-respecting bookworm.
Photos from Lucy Mauro (left) and
Donald George (right) courtesy of
Ms Mauro and Mr George themselves.
On Saturday 4th October I went to the Royal Opera House where I interviewed young Albanian tenor Saimir Pirgu.
Intelligent, committed to his art, professional and with a good sense of humour, he was a very interesting subject to interview. You can read it here.
Photo of Saimir Pirgu as Alfredo in the Metropolitan Opera’s production of Verdi’s La Traviata, New York, by Ken Howard – courtesy of Mr Pirgu’s PR Karen Kriendler Nelson of KKN Enterprises
Wonderful, lively and colourful. Beautiful singing and fabulous acting. These words summarise the very enjoyable summer performance of Jette Parker Young Artists Programme of the Royal Opera House, which I had the pleasure of reviewing.
Click here to read the full review.
Portuguese tenor Luis Gomes and Brazilian baritone Michel de Souza are part of one of the most prestigious young artists’ programmes in the world. I am talking about the Royal Opera House’s Jette Parker Young Artists Programme.
I went to meet Luis and Michel on Friday, July 11. I was curious to discover how they came to opera, as neither Portugal nor Brazil are countries with a great operatic tradition, and what it means for them to be a part of the Jette Parker programme.
It was a delightful experience, as they are both very pleasant and dedicated to their art. I think they are real stars of the future and it was a great pleasure to talk to them. Enjoy reading the interviews by clicking on the photos.
Photos of Luis Gomes and Michel de Souza courtesy of the Royal Opera House
Opera is an extraordinary art form; art is what makes us different from other animals. So, I believe that it is always worth saving any opera house or opera company! My words but Joyce DiDonato said on Twitter:
“You guys are FABULOUS! But not fabulous enough just yet…approaching 7K signatures – COME ON! DO THIS!! PLEASE SIGN!
Joyce is actively trying to prevent a closure of an excellent opera house on what appears to be very feeble grounds. Have a look and if you think it is important to save San Diego Opera, sign the petition (via the above link) and share it!
Christiane Karg is a young German soprano (33) with a flourishing international career, which has naturally developed from her already celebrated, distinguished work in Germany and Austria. She is the owner of a delightful voice, with crystal clear tone and easy, very warm high notes, a solid, accomplished technique and an admirable enunciation and intonation of whatever language she happens to be singing. Her personality is cheerful, straight-forward, open and honest but at the same time she is vivacious, spontaneous and there is a quiet strength that emanates from within her once she begins to speak about her work.
She is an honest, determined, passionate singer and a charming, spontaneous, warm and genuine human being. Her energy and vivacity are contagious; her knowledge and professionalism commendable. Whether she is speaking about herself, her colleagues or her work, she is always open in her opinions, truthful and appealingly natural. In a world where image and perception seem to be everything, Ms Karg was to me a real breath of fresh air. Read my full interview with Christiane Karg. Enjoy!