For individuals who have heard Miss Callas elsewhere (in addition to on innumerable data) there was a primary curiosity in regards to the marriage of the voice and the home: would they be suitable, or would there be want for a interval of trial wedding ceremony? A costume rehearsal on the Saturday earlier than left little question on this respect: the voice, although not an enormous or weighty one, is so well-supported and floated that it’s audible always, most significantly within the piano and pianissimo results which Miss Callas delights in giving us. As far as “Norma” is worried, the singer refuses to pressure it for quantity’s sake alone, and it comes clearly to the ear even when she is ringing out a prime D on the finish of the trio with Adalgisa and Pollione.
The form of voice, mainly, requires some consideration. It’s what each nice artist’s technique of communication turns into: an extension of her personal persona. That persona is dynamic, extremely charged, tigerish, and totally underneath self-discipline. So, too, the voice is dynamically dramatic, produced as if it could be torn from the singer’s insides, and presided over with an nearly seen concern for each phrase and notice she sings. Nothing is inconsiderate, left to probability, or with out complete function.
Factually, Miss Callas can’t afford to carry out in any other case, for had been she depending on the pure bodily great thing about the sound she produces she can be sung out of sight by many individuals presently inconspicuous. There are those that say that within the days previous the well-known food regimen of 1954 there have been a texture and ring to the sound that it doesn’t have immediately. It might be so, or it might be merely a self-advertising justification for singers who refuse to food regimen.
In any case, what Miss Callas has to work with is an organ made within the picture of a sound in her ear which calls for that it’s versatile, far ranging, attentive to all kinds of inflections and intensities. It’s a frequent analogy to check voices with instruments-the flute for coloratura; the trumpet for such a braying tenor the Tamagno; the French horn for the wealthy magnificence and creamy smoothness of a Flagstad. On this orchestral gamut, Miss Callas strikes me as possessed of the clarinet timbre, with the identical form of reedy fullness (and a hint of its vibrato), good on prime, misty on the backside, and with the shiny agility of the black woodwind. And he or she works on it like a woodwind participant fingering invisible keys.
With or with out consideration for the tensions that will need to have accompanied her first look in a theatre to which she has aspired for a full ten years, her composure within the opening “Casta Diva” was spectacular. The sound was edgy and a little bit shrill within the first ascension, however the creative function was deeper, much more communicative than in Chicago two years in the past.
There have been higher performances of this showpiece for the easy purpose that the bloom and freshness to present rolling ear attraction to its pretty melodic line isn’t in strongest provide with Callas. However in most of these cases, a ravishing efficiency of “Casta Diva” was the start and finish of the singer’s suitability to “Norma.” With Callas it’s emphatically solely the start, expressive of 1 side (if an essential one) of the character she is creating.
Right here, in fact, is the essence of what this artist is all about. Her fellow singers, all in a position ones, had been giving performances of assorted levels of vocal high quality. She was creating a personality as emphatically her personal as Flagstad’s Alceste, or Lehmann’s Marschallin, or in one other dimension Markova’s Giselle. It was one thing seen complete and consecutive from starting to finish. Reserved in its early facets, infuriated in those who adopted, and eventually resigned to the self-sacrifice she should make to regain the esteem she has forfeited along with her ill-starred love for Pollione, it finds a vocal tone to match the dramatic want in every temper. That is greater than nice singing: it’s dramatic portraiture of which the operatic stage has all too little.
Because the foregoing might recommend, there was not fairly sufficient of it even on the identical stage she was occupying to make for a constant or wholly satisfying “Norma,” supercharged because it was every now and then. Barbieri alone was a distinct singer from Barbieri with Callas, as had been Barbieri and del Monaco when circumstances required them to carry out with or with out Norma. Consequently, the moments through which an beautiful sense of element prevailed had been rudely succeeded by these through which the loudest prime notice (for the tenor) or the deepest chest tone (for the mezzo) took priority over all.
Birthday anniversaries of conductor Vaclav Neumann (1920); tenors Jon Vickers (1926) and Franco Tagliavini (1934).