• Parlando Asks: What is your favourite Valentine's Day aria?

    By Danielle D'Ornellas

    It's Valentine's Day! We thought about some of our favourite romantic arias or duets for the holiday and discovered that picking romantic music isn't always so easy in opera!

    Gianna Wichelow, Senior Communications Manager, Creative - My choice is less about sentiment, more about seduction: I’m a sucker for a bass-baritone voice. Ruggero Raimondi as Don Giovanni sings the serenade, “Deh vieni alla finestra” with that unique voice of his, redolent of dark, spiced chocolate. His “non esser gioa mia con me crudele” (Do not, my joy, be cruel to me) has a slight hint of menace. Of all the versions I’ve heard of this, he brings to it the greatest sense of the Don as a seducer. Watch it here.

    Bearitone Bear, Social Media Engagement Officer  - Anything from Walton's The Bear.

    Claire Morley, Communications Assistant -  For me, it’s a tie. The final duet in Der Rosenkavalier, “Ist ein Traum / Spür nur dich” when Sophie and Octavian are finally able to be together (and for me, nothing beats Barbara Bonney and Anne Sofie von Otter’s rendition here) is heavenly. And “Che farò senza Euridice” from Orfeo ed Euridice, especially when sung by countertenor Andreas Scholl, is heartbreaking in its simple longing for one’s beloved. Listen to it here.

    Cameron McPhail, baritone, Ensemble Studio member - That's easy. My choice would be "Within this frail crucible of light" from The Rape of Lucretia, because when you're an opera singer and away from your wife on Valentine's Day, you're bitter, lonely and wish everyone was feeling like you! ;) Hypothetically!

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    Posted in Parlando Asks
  • Parlando Asks: What was your favourite musical gift?

    By Danielle D'Ornellas

    Just before we close up the office for the holidays, we asked our staff and social media followers for some of their favourite musical gifts over the years and here are some of their responses!

    Daveda Karanas, mezzo soprano, Brangäne in Tristan und Isolde – "My fave recording of Bluebeard's Castle w/Troyanos, Nimsgern, & Boulez w/the BBC Symp. I'd searched years for it to no avail!" (via Twitter)

    Ali Kashani, Associate Director, Development –" My favourite musical gift was the flute my dad bought me in high school. I was so happy not to have to use one of the school’s instruments (which often had problems) and I was over the moon about the fact that the mouthpiece was solid silver!" 

    Kathleen Keenan, Public Relations Intern – "I’ve received lots of musically-themed gifts over the years, from my clarinet stand to sheet music for the top pop songs of 2003, but my favourite has to be my copy of Michael Steen’s The Lives and Times of the Great Composers. This huge book contains all the information you’ll ever need about the tragic, scandalous or inspiring lives of your favourite classical and opera composers!” 

    John Kriter, Communications Assistant, Creative & Volunteers – "My favourite musical gift was an appreciation of opera given to me by my grandmother."

    Alan Moffat, Ticket Services Manager – "My guitar. My wife and I spent a day going around guitar shops and when I finally found the one that was right for me, she bought it for me. I’ve since written her many songs on it."

    Claire Morley, Communications Assistant – "One of my favourite gifts was from a friend who works at the LSO, who snuck me into a rehearsal of LSO and Colin Davis rehearsing Verdi’s Requiem. The other was an orchestra seat to a concert performance of Fidelio with Simon Rattle and the Berlin Phil."

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    Posted in Parlando Asks

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