Callas says……

She was always for me an excellent interview. Here she discusses with Mr. Downes of the BBC the rigors of diet, and the “sick of being fat”, the interior critic about herself and as usual Callas is wonderful and totally correct. No critic could ever be as cruel as we singers are to ourselves.

She is so right. The courage and the “duty” to serve the music. That is one of the important things that helped her survive with her art in tact.

Desire and discussion with self to improve, sometimes paralyzing oneself over being too difficult on one self.

Affirming and inspirational.

and a clip from a traditional production with two Italian men who really know their parts, Aldo Protti and Nicola Zaccaria.

I count myself fortunate to have seen live one of the last Rigoletto’s of Aldo Protti’s career, while on tour with the Met during the days they did tour. Today so many young baritones attack this role so early, yell their way through it, and never ever come to understand the little “jester”.

Verdi has a complex, vivid, tortured man with the only good thing he has done in his life being defiled by the sexual “glutton” he serves. That he helped hurt and tease and insult so many other people. This meeting with Sparafucile is so dark and important and the start of the end of any good in his life in a tragic, hideous way. The Jester is the one fooled in the end.

Verdi of course paints the ominous with the forgiving, as in the last act of Otello, when his protagonist surrenders to some small part of himself, Verdi is always the most forgiving and supportive of his character, aware of how frail is the will to survive the temptations of jealousy or revenge. The final look of Rigoletto in this clip as given to us by the dark blaze look of the fool thinking, forming the first plan to have the last laugh. We all know he doesn’t get it. But we see the thought consumes him.

Their faces tell you everything, and when they do, so fabulously, opera in it’s traditional form is, IS good theater.

~ by aprilemillo on April 11, 2008.

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