To HONOR and Celebrate Opera and its GREATS/ A Summer of Discovery!

•June 9, 2015 • Comments Off on To HONOR and Celebrate Opera and its GREATS/ A Summer of Discovery!

A chance for this beautiful summer to unfold, with people from 16 to 65 showing their love for the world of opera, in concerts and immersion into the fabric of a society of beautiful people in a culture that breeds beauty and melody and is a place and country so full of opera history is boggles the mind.

I have to thank profoundly Carlo Menconi and the amazing champions of opera The Circolo Carrarese Amici della Lirici “A. Mercuriali” for the profound inspiration and priceless help and advice.  They are a miraculous, intelligent amazing people and I thank them most profoundly, especially Carlo Menconi for his great heart, and knowledge and guidance.

How do I say thank you to a great man of family, and of society, and of theater. Thank you to Tony Award Winning Producer, Luigi Caiola, without whom, this Summer of LOVE for the Art of Opera and the Operavision Academy would never have been able to happen at the level we are able to present it to our beloved Italy….. Luigi, thank you, and your amazing family, but thank you…. from my heart and all our hearts.  You know I love you…..

Here then,

Operavision Academy and its young artists make this pilgrimage to a place of so much history and are humbled to be even a small part of the spiritual and musical prism of genius melody, prodigious profound poetry and beauty that is Italy. Instead of just partaking the sights, and enjoying the food resplendant and unsurpassed, the wines kissed by Italian sunshine grown in a rich soil of centuries of care and love, and share this with the people so full of joy and passion, we wish also to leave a trace of our heart to remain always faithfully in Italy with our song and from our hearts, the sounds of our very souls.

Operavision Academy is giving several concerts featuring the young artists of this year’s Academy, and also some of the wonderful Italian artists who serve music so fabulously here in Italy and make their nation proud…..There we are pleased and honored to be presenting formally donations to three of the most important and historic Foundations in Italy who are some of the beloved guardians of the memories and the works of some of the Sons and Daughters of Italy who gave so prodigiously their gifts to the world. May they NEVER be forgot, and thank you to these great and worthy Foundations.

A United family in service to Opera!   One month and counting…..launching with hearts full and hopes high!!!!

Urbania, Operavision Academy copy_000001

The 12 of July In Carrara: To Honor an Angel in a Church! Renata Tebaldi

•June 4, 2015 • Comments Off on The 12 of July In Carrara: To Honor an Angel in a Church! Renata Tebaldi

duomo3I am so pleased to announce, that with magnificent help from many dear friends, one giant of a man, we are able to present in the incredibly beautiful, awe inspiring IL Duomo di Carrara, a marvel of antiquity and artistic history and beauty, a special concert that will mark my return to Italy to sing with many wonderful artists, as an evening in a Church for one of our most beloved singing angels, the great, the unique the one the only…..Renata Tebaldi….

Much more to come, and information on the gracious artists who will be lending their gifts from God to pay homage to this great legendary voice, all  to raise monies for the sparkling success that is the brand new Museo Tebaldi, curated with love and true adoration by the Comitato Tebaldi, tireless work by Giovanna Colombo and the shining presence of one of Renata’s truest and biggest parts of her heart, Tina Vigano’.  This Museo is to remember Renata, and in a small way as well, the history of melodrama as their are also rare examples of costumes and momentoes from some of the greats that served opera.  During Milano’s EXPO and in this fabulous week of the busy Weeks of Festival of Marmo in historic Carrara where so many geniuses went to their quarries to summon the magic from their pieces of marble, as Michelangelo said of his David, to “release him” from inside that giant piece of marble…. and so many artisans have honored the Duomo of Carrara…. by leaving examples and treasures of their work to adorn the church…. You are surrounded by art at every glance, and now joined to the art of the human voice, you will be bathed in beauty and some of God’s greatest reminders…..Much more to share…but save the DATE and come celebrate with me as we open this Summer of Discovery with a gift of love and support and our voices raised in song for Renata Tebaldi.  Stay tuned….. you will not want to miss this!

logo_comitato_con-address tebaldi-museo-08

886721_193255304175143_1769104646_o 10346616_851292928214960_2982130820854134525_n otello tebaldi-museo-02 tebaldi-museo-03

DSCN2416

DSCN2410 1920px-Carrara_cathedral_6366 1024px-Carrara-cattedrale-pulpito DuomodiCarrara22

They seem to be saying….. stay tuned….. much more to come…..and Brava Renata…. so many to thank and so many to share with you all, but save the date, 12 of July….. in Carrara…..Il Duomo di Carrara….. come be with me!

Ladies and Gentlemen: We have lift-off!

•January 28, 2015 • Comments Off on Ladies and Gentlemen: We have lift-off!

Operavision Academy Summer Poster(2)_000001

 

I am, along with Dr. Mary-Lou Vetere, thrilled beyond measure to announce the launch of an Italian Summer of Discovery!    Operavision Academy – L’Accademia Millo-Vetere,  in association with the historic Centro Studi Italiani, the wonderful Giovanni Pasotto and his amazing family and staff are offering this chance to be the change we wish to encourage in all those that serve music as a performing artist. I am proud beyond measure to welcome to the OV Family, the truly legendary, Maestro, voice pedagogue and music scholar, bel canto’s mighty champion:  Richard Bonynge. To have a an Italian genius, iconic director of film and opera in Franco Zeffirelli giving us the beginning of each week in fabulous little spoken films that anoint the focus of the weeks work. Very rare and very appreciated. So many wonderful guests, and the honored presence of the amazing Simonetta Puccini. A personal favorite of mine for her brilliant mind, passion for the Arts and her devotion to her family and their legacy. Fantastic treasure of Italy she is.

A Three Week intense immersion into all things operatic, a feast for the hungry singing soul to find substance, to allow the Operavision Academy and the amazing people assembled this year to help artists across the age spectrum to SEE themselves differently. Nourish the artist inside  with information, tools to become free to risk, free to communicate, express. proper style and diction and the encouragement to be different, be individual, yet part of a great tradition. Be the canvas seen with the colors and the strokes of the master composer, as it is all in the text and the music. We have assembled a fabulous group of devoted music lovers who passionately believe in its power, how very much alive it is, and how that can be carried to the world in a message of renewed vigor and immense commitment through the artists we will meet.

As with everything in abundance, we offer the courses like “food for the soul”, and we are acutely aware of the crisis in funds for all those who serve the arts, so we are determined to offer, one, two or three week courses as an option.  Those participating in the entire “banquet” will of course see it all.   

Please go on this website to the information links and avail yourself of the many pleasures and opportunities to learn and inspire yourself to greater heights.      This is an incredible chance to be with us for our inaugural year. www.operavisionacademy.co for all the information and applications and important updates.  

We are on  Facebook, Twitter and many more places as the roll out continues. In the next few days, a few little films, and constant updates as this has fantastically caught fire in Italy, and around the world, and people are stepping forward to help in any way they can…. it has been amazing.  A family of opera lovers imploring the artists to be the best they can be…….   See you in Urbania…….!

DSCN0204

Italian Summer of Great Possibility……

•January 19, 2015 • Comments Off on Italian Summer of Great Possibility……

Operavision Academy_000001 copy

 

 

 

Some Music and Photos from the Toronto Recital NOV 2014

•January 9, 2015 • Comments Off on Some Music and Photos from the Toronto Recital NOV 2014

10489867_696401233791867_7897942461543251665_n
10931099_10152787707403557_1381283678998505701_n

10864058_696401297125194_6590629911617547282_o

Ippolito, piano,  Millo and Aregentine Baritone, Gustavo Ahaulli fro AIDA duet

12849_696399673792023_8835780455138867986_n

Millo with harpist, Merynda Adams

10917327_696399737125350_4059548977578020358_n

Mary-Lou Vetere, hear astounding with the accordion….. two nights before winning standing ovations for her gorgeous singing…..

10924722_696400090458648_7099913626124069349_n

A demonic orchestra masquerading as a pianist of rare finesse and power.

10906330_696399923791998_7312118136020886574_n

Norma Trio……  Millo, Vetere, Folinazzo    Vetere Studio, Chorus     Linda Ippolito, piano

10887630_696400287125295_8003259396218202332_o

The first 11 pieces I would say are the Toronto recital of Nov. 2104. The gorgeous sanctuary of Trinity St. Paul’s in Toronto was the most beautiful setting…. click on this jumble of links below and it will take you to page where you can hear all the clips if you like….

Enjoy, I certainly did…..

http://www.reverbnation.com/widget_code/html_widget/artist_243411?widget_id=50&pwcdesign=default&pwcbackground_color=%23333333&pwcincluded_songs=1&pwcphoto=0%2C1&pwcsize=fit

Are the Roses Still Blooming by the sweet Bendemeer?

•September 26, 2014 • Comments Off on Are the Roses Still Blooming by the sweet Bendemeer?

31033_377298829019076_1734294477_n

Such an exciting time ahead. Filled with opportunity to feel alive and sing and share music.

In a world where I am entering literally the adult prime of my life for a voice grown in size, now become a true spinto, leaning towards dramatic, my luck is that the world of opera has gone crazy and after 35 you are supposed to slink off and what? For what?  40 and you are supposed to be done?  We would never have had Flagstad, who debuted at 39 in her true voice, and so many other voices that grew into their instruments, the way fine wine gets better with time.  It was and is supposed to be that way with voice too.

I have never ever been dutiful and done what I was told to do, why start now?  I have been singing since I was 9, made my debut in 1980 in Aida in Utah, 1982 at La Scala, 84 at the Metropolitan Opera… we are looking at a 30 plus year career of singing!   I have a little more to say in my soul and in my singing, so I resolve to sing. I find an industry more like MGM, and figure and face is everything. It isn’t just presentation, that is important, but it isn’t everything, yet so many have drunk the Kool-Aid and bought in to this gotta dance, gotta sing, gotta….whatever, but look good and be prepared to show a lot of skin.  Luciano did warn me this was where it was all going and I did not help matters by growing larger than I should be, and certainly I played recluse better than Garbo.  Listening to what is presented on stage, I felt, why not. Get back in the parade.  I don’t want to sit back, hide. I want to fight for this art form I love. I hate when they call it a dinosaur, then they say it is dead.  It isn’t dead, they aren’t good enough to kill it.  It adjusts, but it has to keep the core of what it is to go forward.

I am  true to my old fashioned ways, same message I gave at the beginning of my life in music is the consistent one I still offer today.  Stay true to the music, let the words carry the story, fill it with noble sound, and get out there and leave everything on the stage….

Listening to Anna Netrebko the other night, who sang a wonderful Lady Macbeth, she did what I love and she gave it everything she had. I admire her so much, and she enjoyed a terrific success, and it helps that I like her a lot. She has always been herself as much as one can before the public, and she is one of the few I will actually go and see, this next Saturday matinee I hope, if I can get in. Happy news when something sells out and it might just do that.

Why do I love this?   Because it is generous and giving and ample…..  what I like in singing….  I don’t have press people running around for me, telling everyone, I just do it, and those that come and hear me, see and hear that.

My advice to everyone singing, wanting to, or trying to, or studying to?  Just do it, have love for what you are doing,  be humble in the face of the greatness of the music , make sure your style is correct in the utterance of the composer, and have nothing but pride about be a singing instrument, a living Strad . Being an opera singer is a disciplined privilege  and an honor,  and working towards being a really great communicator is something special. Working for, and living in the words given to you to express the composers time and feelings, yet, when you have thought about it, couldn’t they really be your own? Haven’t we all loved and lost, and won? Wanted someone who did not want us back, or couldn’t love someone who wanted us? Had to please our families, appease their expectations of us, fulfill their hopes as well as our own. Politically charged times are exactly like the times most of the supposed dinosaur operas were written in?  Far from dead, opera has a lot more to say… and I guess so do I!

Opera is so screamingly relevant now as it ever was, it just doesn’t seem to have people as trusting of its greatness.

And so, we continue. Pray to be worthy and go forward. Happily, at this writing I am looking forward to a weekend in Canada, presenting a fabulous group of young Canadians,all under the watchful eye of a young PhD scholar who happens to sing really well, in fact as gorgeous as she is, so is her voice. Hate her. Mary-Lou Vetere is a throw back. A properly, beautifully raised young Canadian girl, from a third generation Calabrese family…. and she is every bit that, Italian to the core. You cannot imagine how good she is…It will also  be very interesting hearing this studio she works so hard for, filled with fantastic talent, and presenting it in a sanctuary is perfect. A refuge. An oasis. Young people in LOVE with the Art and inspired. I feel blessed being around this and it renews my spirit. I have chosen to do it differently,this evening will be like nothing you could imagine. Opera will come alive right in front of your eyes….

Nov.13th, 2014    Aprile Millo presents the Vetere Studio in OPERA SPECTACULAR! At the gorgeous Trinity St.Paul’s Centre in Toronto, Canada.

Opera Spectacular!  Final Draft

Then  NOV 15th, 2014  immediately after, …is a recital with me.….same bat-time, same-bat place, well one half hour later for my concert at 7:30 with the amazing virtuoso pianist, Linda Ippolito, a fantastic attorney and a very accomplished concert pianist. Featuring Guest Star Gustavo Ahualli, a rich-voiced baritone from The Teatro Colon, and Mary-Lou on accordion, Merynda Adams, on harp and possibly the organist from the St. Paul’s Church as they have a massive organ on stage….and some surprises…..maybe.

aprile millo recital toronto

Then dashing back to New York for the rare privilege of singing for Duane Printz and her amazing Teatro Grattacielo as they celebrate their 20th Anniversary in New York. An evening of seldom heard Verismo pieces, and I have the august opportunity and emotional chance to celebrate also two great friends of mine who were so very fabulous in so many roles but in these kinds of roles that demand attention to word and line and truthful heartbreak, they reigned supreme, they even knew some of the composers! Licia Albanese and Magda Olivero,  and Carlo Bergonzi, all who just this year, within a few months of each other,  crossed into the Paradise they would bring us every time they sang… . I will light a little flicker of their flame that night and sing in their memories what I was asked to sing…. the Third Act from Leoncavallo’s amazing “Zazá” with some terrific colleagues and Maestro Israel Gurksy, and a piece my mom studied with the composer herself,  Refice.  Licia sang together with Muzio on tour,alternating roles,  and she gave me a great compliment  after she heard me sing this scene for a Gala At AVA, saying she had never heard anyone do it since Muzio as well as me….she was crying when she said it…it will be hard to sing it that night to be sure. The Last Act death and transfiguration of Cecilia in the beautiful music that was penned by a priest who adored Claudia Muzio’s voice. He wrote her a sacred opera on the life of the patron saint of music. Cecilia. Nov.18th at the Skirball Hall in New York.

Logo_200

We arrive at end of November and I return to a brand new production of Tosca in Genoa beginning the 20th of December with Maestro Auguin and with Gregory Kunde and Carlos Alvarez. We could have something special here. Working feels good, serving music feels best. I cannot wait to sing again in that vital and wonderful theater filled with people who believe in the power of opera and in the beauty of it’s message. Italy after all…of course , they would know.

rsz_100x140_programmaopera1415_stampa2banner300

I am enjoying this so much….those of you who read and understand what this means to me, pray for me. I want to please Puccini, the public, his dearest Granddaughter, Simonetta, who I have come to adore. And most importantly, I want to serve music, feel it’s glory around me. We will see if the roses still bloom, and I think I see a few new buds springing up, and that is strong good news, because it will be winter! Here I go, down the path that life leads me…. it’s the best thing I have in life, the gift that God gave me…. In this depressing time of people ringing death knells for the opera,  I want to get out and fight for it… I am not alone!   This is just the start and so much more to come!

Come find me on this walk, and come say,  alla Puccini,  “hallo!”.

484702_490985250944454_1234793528_n

Gather ye rosebuds while thee may….. I plan to do so, with everything I got, and  with so much joy and gratitude!!!

10370827_10203606818158220_1675562157211207364_n

Happy Birthday to me…..!

•April 14, 2014 • Comments Off on Happy Birthday to me…..!

Happy Birthday to me.....!

Though we scream and kick and holler about growing older, I for one prefer it to the alternative.

I love and have always loved since I was a child the presence of older people. People alive when things to me where more authentic, clothes were hand stitched, and food not so preserved but healthier. When class was being polite and well spoken, and you cared about one another. “Hail Fellow, well met!” was a basis of thought and a matter of being… the world seemed gentler with an edge, danger was still danger but it wasn’t a video game where people or creatures are destroyed for points.  People were truly creative because they had to be, nothing was easy.  Curiosity, and respect was a rigorous discipline, it was the mark of a good person.  Respect for authority and a belief in someone more intelligent to teach you, was a great promise often kept, and being wrong didn’t make you stupid, it just meant, happily, you didn’t know it all. Being nice made you a person of character and not like today, where it seems as if you are thought of as a chump. It was never perfect, there is no perfection outside the first few seconds of a butterfly springing from out of it’s cocoon… no time period is without drawbacks.  All I can say is in instinct……Beware a bored populace, where everything is immediate and nothing is set aside to get the mind towards things of beauty and introduced to a higher thought or culture.

So here come I celebrating my birthday, grateful to God for that, for all and I truly mean all of my family and friends, they are a blessing, a window for my soul to see better and best the world and events around me…. to cultivate curiosity and applaud a sense of gratitude for all the blessings abundant around me….. of that I am forever grateful…

and last but not least, a return to singing….!!!!

More to follow on that, happily.

But about that, there must be this….

A commitment to following through now to the bitter end the struggle with numbers, scales do not lie, and not hiding in those numbers any further. I will be performing no matter the case, so I must decide how much I want to believable in what I do…..

Like it or not, theater and movies have invaded an art form that needs distance, for impact of thought and vision and sound. Voices need to have space to bloom, as do ideas….but that is not the course of today’s guardians…. so how do I make an audience suspend their disbelief and come with me on a special voyage of music and poetry and song, and do what all good theater people do, “Tell a story” ……because opera is the grand buffet of theater, it has it all… so, the truth is, so must I…. for what I have left to give, and in honor of what I have given and will give… I must try….

Here we go! …. come with me…. fight for this art form not in a passive way, but loudly, and full of pride…be not the undertaker and decry it’s all over, it’s dead… no one wants to go to a funeral…

Be the one that says with their life, with their love and joy, this is a great and powerful emotion I give you… this is a brush with the eternal I help you glimpse,  a chance to touch the Mona Lisa, something rare, because each singer and their message is that, like a fingerprint……no tricks, this is magic….!!!

On this my birthday, 2014 wish me well, and stay in touch…. much more to come.

Time, is the handsome man in this portrait, and the young lady is all of us, rather than fight it, enjoy the ride, this passage of time, and no matter what, give, give,give……

 
Gottesacker

Friedhofs-Fotografien von Michael Wassenberg

Theosophy Watch

"Ancient Thought in Modern Dress"

Alex Ross: The Rest Is Noise

Aprile Millo's View of the Opera/World

Aprile Millo's View of the Opera/World

parterre box

Aprile Millo's View of the Opera/World

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 3,133 other followers