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What makes opera the ultimate art form is that it incorporates the written word with music, visual design, movement and dance, drama, with the expressive power of an unamplified human voice. The physical presence on the stage of a great singer such as Domingo, Ramey, or Te Kanawa is an extension of the voice. The majestic beauty of a great singer exists because the art form has made them beautiful. The posture, grace and presence of a diva or divo is indeed the definition of beauty for me. When I think back upon the unforgettable, life changing experiences opera has given me, I think of hearing Mirella Freni at Avery Fischer Hall at age 18 and being overwhelmed the resonant beauty of her voice and how her high notes filled the hall. I remember Tatiana Troyanos’ charm, personality and one of a kind sound and how she was able to captivate me effortlessly even though I was in the nosebleed seats. I will never forget hearing Jessye Norman in “Ariadne” from third row seats I snuck into during intermission, and marveling at how a woman could have such power and beauty in her lower range, I remember being reduced to a puddle of tears by Maria Scampagna at the end of Butterfly at City Opera and how Pavarotti filled the Met with a glorious, blooming sound that I only truly understood after I saw the sun shining on lemon groves in Italy in Summer. That is opera! Nothing in either pictures of the Julia Lima meme have anything to do with the magic of opera.
Toggle Commented Oct 4, 2015 on #ThisIsOpera, y'all at Mezzo with Character
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Oct 3, 2015