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Contact: irina.stanescu@ymail.com
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"We have great chemistry on stage"

...said Roberto in an interview published on musicalcriticism.com, speaking of his partner in Carmen, Elina Garanca. The revival of Francesca Zambello's production of Carmen is due to start at the Royal Opera House in London on October 3rd. He goes on adding "I think she will be the most complete Carmen I have ever seen". Well, we'll see about that. But the verdict will be uttered next year, if everything goes as planned. If not, I'll come back to this post and say "yes, Elina is the best Carmen I've ever seen live". She's singing this part at least in three different opera houses: ROH, Met and Staatsoper Vienna.
This is Alagna's first Don José in the UK. What does he think about this role? "I love it, because all the time the character grows from my own life experience. As you grow older, you think in a different way and you can bring this to your interpretation. This man is crazy because of love. Because of this he will destroy himself and also Carmen". I don't know why but this statement makes me think of something else...
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He also speaks about how he began to sing, how he won the audition at Glyndebourne and got his first Alfredo and later on confirms what Angela said in a previous interview: "I never take holidays – after 1 week I get bored. Maybe I don't like to be in the real world, because reality has sometimes been very difficult and it is easier in this imaginary world where you can forget everything".
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Asked about his future projects, he replies: "They are releasing Le Jongleur de Notre Dame, L'Amico Fritz, and the DVD of Orphée of which I am very proud. I also have a new DVD of Sicilian repertoire coming out in November, a CD of jazz with a gypsy guitarist, and a DVD of melodies composed by my two brothers called 'L'invitation au voyage''.
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He'd like to sing some German repertoire in the future but for the moment he's still deep in the Italian opera. For 2011 and 2012 he'll return to ROH. Good news for everybody! First it's La Boheme (Rodolfo) and La Rondine (Ruggiero) and in 2012 L'elisir D'amore (Nemorino) and Aida (Radames). Who's going to be his Mimi/Magda/Adina?
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You can read the entire interview HERE.
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Also on musicalcriticism.com there's an interview with the director, Francesca Zambello - HERE and one with Elina Garanca - HERE. They both speak about this revival of Carmen.

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Angela, Bryn, Waldbuhne - Italian Night

The DVD was released on August 25th 2009
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Featuring:
Angela Gheorghiu
Bryn Terfel
Sergei Larin
Anvil Chorus
Fire Chorus
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Berliner Philharmoniker
Conductor: Claudio Abbado
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Music by composers:
Guiseppe Verdi
Paul Lincke
Vincenzo Bellini
Gioachino Rossini
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Directed for Video: Brian Large
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The previous release was in 2002 under TDK UK ltd. It's the same one but with a different cover, as you can see. The first one was an "all regions" DVD and the new one is "Region 1 - USA and Canada" DVD.
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DVD features Claudio Abbado conducting Berliner Philharmoniker and soloists Angela Gheorghiu, Sergei Larin and Bryn Terfel at Waldbuhne in Berlin. The concert program includes, among others:
- Verdi's overture and chorus of Hebrew slaves from Nabucco
- Bellini's Eccomi in lieta vesta from I Capuleti e I Montecchi
- Verdi's E lui... O mio Rodrigo from Don Carlo and Vedi
Le fosche notturne from Il Trovatore
Gia nella Notte Densa from Otello
- Rossini's overture from Gugliermo Tell
- Overture Il Barbiere di Siviglia
- Berliner Luft by Paul Lincke



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It can be ordered from:
- amazon.com - 17.99 USD
- kultur - 19.99 USD
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Giulietta's recitative and aria "Eccomi in lieta vesta" from Act I
I Capuleti e i Montecchi by Vincenzo Bellini with Sergei Larin





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Duet Desdemona/Otello "Già nella notte densa"
Otello by Giuseppe Verdi - with Sergei Larin





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Program for Singapore and change of conductor


Singapore Sun Festival 2009
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OPERA GALA PERFORMANCE
The Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Conductor: Paolo Omi
Soprano ANGELA GHEORGHIU & Tenor MARIUS MANEA
SATURDAY 10 OCTOBER • 7.30pm
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Duration: 1 hour and 30 minutes with 20 minute interval
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Program:
Verdi - La Traviata “Parigi O Cara
Catalani - La Walli “Ebben
Puccini - La Boheme “Che Gelida Manina
Donizetti - L’Elisir D’Amore “Caro Elisir
Interval
Mascagni - L’Amico Fritz “Suzel Bon Di
Verdi - Luisa Miller “Quando Le Sere Al Placido
Puccini - Madame Butterfly “ Un Bel Di Vedremo
Puccini - La Boheme “O Soave Fanciulla

Tickets still available here. And there are some special VIP Hospitality Tent Passes for sale too.


LATEST NEWS
The change of conductor to Maestro Paolo Omi. Maestro van Zweden has to return to Europe, and Maestro Omi is a very experienced opera conductor who has worked with Ms Gheorghiu on many occasions, and the organizers are thrilled that Maestro Omi was available and willing to come to Singapore.

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London - POSTPONED

This is written on the website of the Southbank Center.
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Due to serious influenza, Angela Gheorghiu will have to postpone her Southbank Centre concert that was planned to take place in the Royal Festival Hall on the 2nd of October this year. The new date for this concert will be 10 November. Regrettably, tenor James Valenti is unable to appear on this date; Ms Gheorghiu looks forward to performing with Marius Manea, who will now be joining her for the concert. Please note that all tickets already purchased for the 2 October concert are valid for the rescheduled date. If you hold a ticket but are now unable to attend, please contact our Ticket Office on 0871 663 2500*. *Currently calls from the BT Network will be charged at 10 pence per minute, costs from other providers and mobile networks may vary.
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Sorry. November 10th is a Tuesday. No chance for me to get there. On the other hand, I already saw both singing the same arias in Munich this year. I'll wait for another concert. But I can't help being sad. As I was ... 4 times already. I think it's part of this hobby/passion. It's a risk and I take it. In time you get used to this feeling....

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Videos from the concert in Bucharest

The concert - best of

Un Bel Di - Madama Butterfly - Puccini

Brindisi - La Traviata - Verdi

Non ti scordar di me

Muzica

Siboney
Les Filles de Cadix
Habanera - Carmen - Bizet

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Interview before the concert in Bucharest

There were some reports from this concert that were published in different newspapers or on different websites, but this is the only interview that I found. It was taken one day before the show in Bucharest. It was published on the website of Radio Romania Muzical, the best radio station in Romania that deals with this side of culture (classical music, opera, concerts).
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The author is Cristina Radu and you can read the article in Romanian HERE.
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Below you have the translation.
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Saturday, September 19th 2009, in Constitution Sqare, the famous soprano Angela Gheorghiu offered to the citizens of Bucharest an exceptional concert on the occasion of anniversary of 550 years of history of the city. In front of a large crowd, Angela Gheorghiu had a spectacular appearance on stage together with her colleagues: the tenor Vlad Mirita and “George Enescu” Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Tiberiu Soare. The concert was introduced by Victor Rebengiuc and it was a huge success.
In exclusivity for Radio Romania Muzical, this is an interview taken after the general rehearsal, one day before the concert.

Thank you and we’re honored that you accepted to give this interview for Radio Romania Muzica and for the Romanian public who’s waiting for this concert with great enthusiasm. What is the program and what can you tell us about your colleagues?
If you had been here since the beginning you could have found Victor Rebengiuc here. He’ll present the concert tomorrow night. My partner on stage will be Vlad Mirita, whom I sung with in Italy, one month ago. A few days ago I came back from Moscow where I had two concerts with another great Romanian tenor, Marius Manea. I’m happy to return to Romania. Tonight it was almost a concert, we sung a lot.
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You have a very successful career, being admired by the public around the world. What does it mean to be a lyrical artist in the 21st century?
I’m spoiled, as I always said and theatres and public, both in concert halls and open air spaces, proved it to me. In open air concerts there’s a different way of shearing emotions with the public. I believe in technique, in microphones, and for the artists that manage to have a career these are not mystery anymore. What can I say? For the past 20 years I’ve been packing and unpacking, I go to every corner of the world. From here I go to London, then to Singapore, Tel Aviv and then United States…But I’m glad I’m home again and that I found this great opportunity to celebrate Bucharest: 550 is an important figure and I’m happy that I’ll perform next to the Bucharest Philharmonic, a beautiful orchestra with talented instrumentalists. Moreover, I met for the first time a talented and very well prepared Romanian conductor, Tiberiu Soare. I think we have amazing young musicians. Take advantage of them, I tell you that. Otherwise they’ll pack and go somewhere else in the world.
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You’re a very appreciated and loved model by the young people who train for a lyrical career. What can you tell them?
I wish them luck starting from school, from the teachers, those who have trust in them. Since I was 17 I started to appear on TV, radio, I did a lot of recordings, took part in many shows that proved to be useful. Music teachers at high school and later on at the Conservatory became my friends and most of them gave me private lessons without taking money. They just wanted to know I’m well prepared and to encourage me. I recall many people that worked in radio and TV: Iosif Sava, Luminita Constantinescu, people that did extraordinary shows.
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You have a very broad repertoire, for tomorrow night too. Where are you heading to, speaking of the repertoire?
It’s not heading anywhere. I never “behaved” with my repertoire but I’ve always been very careful. I don’t do the same operas on stage and on recordings, I don’t sing too much, I chose the theatres I sing in, the productions, the partners. If I have to put in balance how many times I said “yes” and “no”, I think I used “no” more often. Even if I lean towards mezzo parts I think it’s more about the “color”, the character than the volume.
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During your career you’ve been always surrounded by important people, great conductors, singers, directors…
Yes, I think I met the best. In 20 years of career I don’t think there’s somebody from opera, film, theatre I haven’t met because the faith led us on the same path. They came to my shows or I went to see them in theatres. I remember I met Jeremy Irons in New York not long time ago. Some months before I met Judi Dench, a great British actress, a good friend of mine. There are people that give me energy because I love theatre and I want to bring something from it in opera too.
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You’re a true diva, which makes us think of performace. How do you see the evolution of this word in the 20th century?
It’s not what it used to be. It was first used for opera singers, some centuries ago. Starting 100 years or 50 years ago people started using it for pop singers, in fashion, in sports. First it designated a person that had an angelic voice, that reminded of “divine”. This is where the term is coming from, right? Later on it was used for men and women who had the ability of delivering positive emotions to the people that admire them, that dream to get closer to them.
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You make people that come to listen to you happy. Good luck tomorrow night!
And see you soon. I’m happy to be in Bucharest, I love my city… even if I’m from Adjud, from Moldavia, I’ve been living in Bucharest since I was 14 so I consider myself citizen of Bucharest. So long live Bucharest!

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Muzica - "the hymn of my life"

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All the photos - HERE
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This was a concert that came unexpectedly. I had a hint but it was confirmed only about 3 weeks ago. It was an open air concert organized during "The Days of Bucharest"
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The press wrote today that there were 10.000 people. I don't know about that. But I know one thing for sure. There were at least 3000 other people (that dedicated public, les connaisseurs)that might have liked to come but couldn't. There were 4 other important (and very important cultural events in Bucharest taking place at the same time):
- Concertgebouw conducted by Mariss Jansons at the Palace Hall (considered by "Gramophone" magazine the best orchestra in the world - part of "George Enescu" International Festival) - the concert was sold out. The hall has about 3100 seats.
- Yo Yo Ma (the famous cello player) at the National Opera House (part of the Festival) - again, sold out. About 1000 seats, I think
- Monte Carlo Ballet at the National Theatre (also part of the Festival), sold out - about 1200 seats
- free performances at different theatres in Bucharest and free entrance at most of the museums
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So, you see, the competition was strong. For me it was easy to decide. Concertgebouw on the next day, Yo Yo Ma has to come back for me sometimes in the future, Monte Carlo Ballet also on the next day. Now that everything was set, the concert could start.
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It was a cold fall evening. The coldest in September. Sorry for that. We were dressed and we were cold. I know that somebody on the stage might have had a hard time standing there for 2 hours in those beautiful (but unproper for such a weather) dresses, singing. Big thank you for that! This concert was important for a lot of people. There are admirors that can't afford travelling to other countries so this was a big opportunity. There were also a lot of people coming to see this concert from different cities in Romania. Some of them saw Angela live for the first time. Some of them had that chance back in 1996 or 2004. But for everybody it was a pleasure that "the soprano that charmed the world" (as Mr Rebengiuc said in the opening on the concert) came home to sing. I say this to every person that wants to listen. A concert is great, but it's opera where you can listen to her amazing voice. If you ask me, go to Royal Opera House in London (try La Traviata next July). For me, it's there where her voice sounds best.
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Angela Gheorghiu and Vlad Mirita sung something for every taste. It was a free open air concert and the program was decided accordingly. Each person there chose a song as favorite, sighted at something, cheered a particular song, cried during another one. I heard sooo many comments. My fav? "Muzica". Always, because of a particular line in the refrain. "Music is my life and it gave me everything". Well, without this attachment to music that I have for quite some time it wouldn't have been the same. This evening I had a second favorite. "Brindisi", because it reminded me how much I want to listen to Traviata live.
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Part One
1. Entre’Act / Carmen de Bizet - Orchestra
2. Habanera / Carmen de Bizet – Angela Gheorghiu
3. Nessun Dorma / Turandot by Giacomo Puccini – Vlad Mirita
4. Un bel di / Madama Butterfly by Giacomo Puccini – Angela Gheorghiu
5. O fortuna / Carmina Burana by Carl Orff– Orchestra/Chorus
6. O mio babbino caro / La Boheme by Giacomo Puccini – Angela Gheorghiu
7. O suave fanciulla / La Boheme by Giacomo Puccini - Angela Gheorghiu & Vlad Mirita.
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Part two
8. Die Fledermaus: Uvertura / Johann Strauss – Orchestra
9. Santa Lucia by Teodoro Cottrau – Vlad Mirita
10. Le filles de Cadix by Leo Delibes – Angela Gheorghiu
11. Mamma by Cesare Andrea Bixio – Vlad Mirita
12. Romanian Rhapsody by George Enescu –Orchestra
13. Muzica / Valurile Dunarii by George Grigoriu - Angela Gheorghiu
14. Te Iubesc / Lasati-ma sa cant by Gherase Dendrino – Angela Gheorghiu & Vlad Mirita
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6 encores:
Siboney
O sole mio
I Could Have Danced all Night
Non ti scordar di me
Granada
Brindisi
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No need to mention that the outfits were beautiful. You have already saw the picture that opened the post. The first one - during the sound check, before the concert. Next 3 during the concert and the last one, after the concert. That last outfit during the show simply hypnotized everybody, including the members of the orchestra: a long, red dress, with its well studied transparency on bust and waist.
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There were great fireworks after the concert. And they were right above our heads. There was a huge noise but what we saw was amazing.
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And now the "thank you" section:
- first of all, thanks to Mrs Gheorghiu. One extra concert and more than that, a concert in my home town, is... better that a Christmas present
- to Mr Mirita who, I'm sure, did his best, handled the emotions and the voice. He's young, talented and with lots of practice he can improve a lot. Even if there were some hesitating moments during the piece, the end of Nessun Dorma was a great success. As he declared, he sung it for the first time on stage, so it's fully understandable.
- to the orchestra conducted by Tiberiu Soare who played with pleasure. They would have needed more time to practice but the soloists and the conductor are professionals. In the end everything ended well. Only that... the Romanian Rhapsody by Enescu didn't sound..... as it was supposed to. Maybe next time it is better, especially in the brass section.
- to those at the sound board. Mics placed perfectly except one, at the percussion section. During "Carmina Burana" my lungs and liver were shivering :). And again, during "Un Bel Di", the lyrics say that there's a cannon far away (and a cannon-like sound is heard). Tonight, the cannon was veeery close to us.
- to the "organizers" up above for sending the clouds away. Some extra degrees would have been helpful.... but at least it didn't rain.
- to the 3 ladies behind me that left after the interval. They talked sooo much, all kind of stupid comments. Why do people behave like this? If the stage is far away and the sound is loud, this doesn't mean that the others around can't hear you talking ?!?!
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That's all. Briefly, because after each concert/opera involving Mrs Gheorghiu I tend to repeat myself.
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One video. The quality of the sound is not that good. Mine is just a photo camera. It can't be perfect. But take it as a memory of that evening. I didn't pay too much attention to what the camera was filming. I couldn't take my eyes away from the stage.
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The end of Non ti scordar di me, one of the encores.







All the photos - HERE

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"Whatever I am doing, people are looking at me – but they don't know why!"

This is a new interview by Michael Church that was published today in The Independent. There is almost nothing new, but it could settle a little bit that debate related to the fact that Angela and Roberto sing less and less together. The beginning seems the same as in other interviews, but it develops and the end is very well chosen. Below there are some excerpts but you can read the interview in The Independent.
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'My husband is jealous of my new leading man'
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(...)
She hasn't yet decided which arias she will sing in the Southbank recital which is the pretext for this interview (in the event, it's to be a selection of arias by Verdi, Massenet, Gounod, Mascagni and Puccini). But she's fired up by the Tosca which Covent Garden created as a vehicle for her, and which, as we speak, has just had its first revival. (Indeed, Gheorghiu will return in La Traviata next July at the Royal Opera House.) She wishes the audience could have seen up close the murderous electricity between her and Bryn Terfel: "I just trusted my instinct, as I always have. In 20 years I have never made one mistake in following my instinct." Forty-year-old memories of Maria Callas in the role have been erased: "Now everybody accepts me as Tosca."
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One thing leads obliquely to another in Gheorghiu's rapid discourse, and suddenly she's criticising Jonathan Miller, as an example of what a director should not be. "Imagine the National Theatre engaging a director for Shakespeare who doesn't speak a word of English – yet in opera it happens every day. I remember Jonathan Miller coming to direct a new production of Traviata holding the booklet from my CD – excuse me! Whoa!" Was he perhaps wanting to flatter her? "Unfortunately not. He is a doctor, so he set the last scene in a hospital – he wanted to put a lot of beds, and I said no, put only one bed – my bed." What does she want from a director? "They must not be afraid to make demands. They must not be so touched by my singing that they just cry, and accept things as perfect. But they must ask, not command. If they command, I go." She prepares with fanatical thoroughness for each new role at home in Geneva, where she and Alagna have brought up her sister's orphaned daughter, Uana, alongside Alagna's daughter, Ornella, from his first marriage (his wife died of cancer).
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(...)
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As she discusses – with notable generosity – the individual strengths of her colleagues, it becomes clear that in matters of the voice she is a real connoisseur. But one with an eye firmly fixed on the bottom line: "Opera is like football. Eleven players all dressed the same, but all the time you look at only one. Because he has that aura. His playing may have a defect, but he turns that defect into a strength." Does this apply to her too? "Yes." What's her defect? An exultant shout: "To be different! Whatever I am doing, people are looking at me – but they don't know why!"
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How does she feel about all the knocking stories in the press? "First I cried, then I said, I'll call my lawyer. But then I thought – the press have a lot of imagination. So I say, thank you for the ideas! They call me 'Draculette' because I am from Romania. And they talk of Roberto and me as Bonnie and Clyde – OK! Those names are now the subject of operas. Draculette is already written, by an American composer, so I say to the press, thank you very much. Another composer is now writing Bonnie and Clyde – so, thank you again!" What about that oft-repeated tale of her demanding a make-up artist for a Radio 3 interview? "Lies!"
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The latest piece of mendaciousness arose, she says, out of an interview Alagna recently gave in London, in which he was reported as being jealous of her new artistic partnership with the German tenor Jonas Kaufmann (she now divides her time on stage between them). But that report seems to have been pretty accurate.
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"In the beginning it was easier to sing with Roberto, when our repertoire was mostly the same, but then I began to sing with others, and in Roberto's mind there is jealousy," she says. "I'm a good colleague, I try to support him. But at the same time I am an opera singer, and I want a good result with everybody – if others want to sing with me, I try to give them the same. I need to feel free, to sing where I want, with who I want. I didn't marry Roberto to sing only with him. I must go ahead with my projects. And he is very upset."
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What will she do to resolve this? "Nothing. The show must go on, the life must go on. I must feel free. The problem is that we are married, and his mind is like, 'I must do with Angela everything.' He's a very good singer, and I am not betraying him, but he must accept that I will sing with more people. And here is the problem! The person who is happy because you are happy – that person loves you. But Roberto is a Sicilian man, so he has in his blood, 'She's mine – only mine!' He's still singing my old repertoire, but I'm not singing his repertoire."
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Might the answer be a long holiday together, to sort things out? "He never takes holidays! In 15 years, I have had just one holiday with him – in Mexico; it was paradise. But he is so intense about his profession, he won't stop." A rueful shrug: "C'est la vie!"
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(...)
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Maybe, I suggest, reviews are now less of an issue than they used to be, given that most newspapers are primarily obsessed with gossip. "And I'm very good for that! I'm top of the list – thank you very much! You and I can thank each other, finally." The interview finished, I turn my machine off, and she suddenly asks with shy urgency what I thought of her Tosca the night before, and is grateful for a positive response. Perhaps reviews do matter after all.

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And the concert was...

...exactly as I wanted it to be. I listened to all those beautiful songs I heard many times before and as bonus, Habanera from Carmen. Loved it, waiting to listen to it again... sometime next year. As this morning I'm going to another concert, just one picture from last night. So you'll want more and come back in the next days. What can I say.. you won't be sorry for doing that :)

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Invitation

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Tonigh is the big night for me. The concert in Bucharest will take place starting 9pm. You're all invited to join me for comments, tomorrow.

This is the bilboard that can be seen in Bucharest these days.

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Bavrikha Luxury Village - VIDEO!

4 beautiful videos from the concert in Moscow on September 13th!

O soave fanciulla from La Boheme by Puccini - Angela Gheorghiu & Marius Manea

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Duet L'amico Fritz by Mascagni - Angela Gheorghiu & Marius Manea


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Bridisi from La Traviata by Verdi - Angela Gheorghiu & Marius Manea

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Un bel di from Madama Butterfly by Puccini

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London, October 2nd

More news!!!
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After receiving the program for the concert in Bucharest, now the program for London has been announced on the website of Southbank Center in London. The concert will take place on October 2nd, starting 07:30pm.
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Programme includes:
Giuseppe Verdi: Parigi o cara (La Traviata)
Jules Massenet: Pleurez, pleurez mes yeux (Le Cid)
Charles Gounod: Salut! Demeure chaste et pure (Faust)
Charles Gounod: Va! Je t'ai pardonne (Romeo et Juliette)
Francesco Cilea: Lamento di Federico (L'Arlesiana)
Giuseppe Verdi: Pace, Pace mio Dio (La Forza del destino)
Giacomo Puccini: O soave fanciulla (La Boheme)
*plus orchestral works to be announced
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Philharmonia - Orchestra
Ion Marin - Conductor
Angela Gheorghiu - Soprano
James Valenti - Tenor
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You can still buy tickets, hurry up!

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Program for the concert in Bucharest!

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I found the information on http://www.operaonline.ro/. Thanks for posting. And thanks to the source, Mrs Roxanei Fica from IDEAplus Communication, the promoters of the show.
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Part One
1. Entre’Act / Carmen de Bizet - Orchestra
2. Habanera / Carmen de Bizet – Angela Gheorghiu
3. Nessun Dorma / Turandot by Giacomo Puccini – Vlad Mirita
4. Un bel di / Madama Butterfly by Giacomo Puccini – Angela Gheorghiu
5. O fortuna / Carmina Burana by Carl Orff– Orchestra/Chorus
6. O mio babbino caro / La Boheme by Giacomo Puccini – Angela Gheorghiu
7. O suave fanciulla / La Boheme by Giacomo Puccini - Angela Gheorghiu & Vlad Mirita
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Part two
8. Die Fledermaus: Uvertura / Johann Strauss – Orchestra
9. Santa Lucia by Teodoro Cottrau – Vlad Mirita
10. Le filles de Cadix by Leo Delibes – Angela Gheorghiu
11. Mamma by Cesare Andrea Bixio – Vlad Mirita
12. Romanian Rhapsody by George Enescu –Orchestra
13. Muzica / Valurile Dunarii by George Grigoriu - Angela Gheorghiu
14. Te Iubesc / Lasati-ma sa cant by Gherase Dendrino – Angela Gheorghiu & Vlad Mirita

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Moscow x 2


I just found that Angela Gheorghiu performed twice in Moscow. The concert announced on the official site and another one, one day before, on September 12th.
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It was an anniversary concert for Mr Vladimir Spivakov. - the 65th jubilee concert, that took place on September 12th, in Svetlanov Hall, at Moscow International Performing Arts Center. The program featured symphonic and opera masterpieces of the XVIII – XX centuries performed by outstanding artists: pianists Denis Matsuev, Helene Mercier, Louis Lortie, vocalists Hibla Gerzmava and Angela Gheorghiu.

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Mr Spivakov is a leading Russian conductor and violinist best known for his work with the Moscow Virtuosi chamber orchestra.
At the age of 13, Spivakov was awarded the first prize at the major conductor contest in Moscow. He studied at the Moscow Conservatory under Yuri Yankelevich and debuted with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in 1979. The same year he established the Moscow Virtuosi chamber orchestra. In 1984, Leonard Bernstein presented his conductor's baton to Spivakov. In 1989 he emigrated to Spain. Spivakov was named the People's Artist of the USSR in 1991. Three years later, he established the Vladimir Spivakov International Charity Foundation to help Russian orphans. In 2000 he was awarded the Légion d'honneur for his work as an artistic director of the Colmar International Festival, for which he has worked since 1989.
Spivakov is also considered one of the foremost violinists of his generation, having studied with Yuri Yankelevich at the Moscow Conservatory. He was a prizewinner at several competitions in Moscow, Paris, Genoa, and Montreal.
He currently serves as the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the National Philharmonic of Russia.
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As for the moment there's no information on the internet regarding the concert on September 13th. I only found one picture. I guess it was taken by Mr Anatoly Korshunov as I found it on his blog.

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Bucharest concert... soon

Good news!
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The show will be broadcasted live on TVR3 and TVR International.
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TVR3 - Saturday, September 19th - 9pm to 11pm (local time)
TVR International - Saturday, September 19th - 11:30pm (local time - for time conversion see here). According to the schedule of this station, there'll be only 30 minutes of broadcast. But maybe it's just a mistake.
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For those who won't be in Bucharest, a short introduction about the place where the concert takes place. It's called Constitution Square and it's on one side of the Palace of Parliament..
The stage is placed where the cars are. And the artists face the Palace of Parliament. It always looks like this by night.
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The Palace of the Romanian Parliament it's a "giant" built during the "golden age" of the dictatorial regime and born in the mind of a man for whom the notion of "reasonable size" did not exist.
Still, there is a "first place " no other building in the whole world could compete for, namely that of the most disputed one, as no other construction has, until nowadays, been the target of such a great number of epithets, varying from "genius" to "monstruos".
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Built and rebuilt overnight, the haughty "Republic House" had swallowed tens of billions of lei and a huge volume of work before the Revolution.
The construction was started and raised while many Romanians experienced a period of privations. Probably that is the reason why, at the very beginning the building was the object of their hate.
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After December 1989, the building which may easily be spotted wherever you are in Bucharest, was considered to be hideous and become subject to the most original ideas. Some, out of the revolutionary excitement, agreed that it should be dynamited, as it stood for the symbol of communism. Others agreed that it could accomodate a museum of communism. Realizing its enormous value, in fact a Romanian inheritance in danger of being destroyed and robbed, people began to view the building with less hostility and named it the "People's House".
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Consequently, the builders resumed their work and, as the works were carried on, it was decided that the construction should be house the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate of Romania, and that it should change its name to the "Palace of Parliament" - a symbol of democracy.
In May 1994, the International Conference Centre was set up according to a decision of the Chamber of Deputies; the meetings of the Crans Montana Forum were held within its halls. The Palace of Parliament is also open to be visited by groups of tourists, everyday.
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The construction, started in July 1984, has 6 registers and 21 bodies. The pompous halls and galleries are generously decorated with monumental sculptures, golden plaster, laced ceilings, brocharts, tapestries and heavy carpets, which harmoniously overwhelm the visitors.
The Marble from Ruschita sends its reflections from the floors and columns to the walls and ceilings. The oak, mahogony and beck wood welcome the visitors with the warmth of their refined sculptures that may be equaled only by the plaster work or the crystals and the bross of the chandeliers.
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Anyone visiting the Palace of Parliament, designed and built at great cost, effort and sacrifice by Romanian specialists and the whole of Romanian industry, comes to realize that this is not o palace from Aladdin's stories, but a real one, displaying the true wealth of Romania: stone, marble and wood from the Romanian mountains and forests.
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So far, only the date (19.09)/time (9pm local time)/location (Constitution Square)/participants (Angela Gheorghiu, Vlad Mirita, were announced. No word about the program.

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Roberto Alagna keeps Sicilien-ing

During a TV show for the French TV, TV5 Monde, Roberto talked to Sebastien Folin and then sung 3 songs. These are the questions/answers. has anybody noticed that he talkes about Angela in every interview? He also talked about her in a recent interview during the Desert Island Book program.
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Rock, Pop ou Jazz ?
Opéra

Le chanteur/groupe héros de votre enfance ?
Les Beatles. C'est, pour moi, un groupe de légende

Votre album culte de chevet ?
L'intégrale des enregistrements d'Enrico Caruso, le plus grand ténor italien de tous les temps.

Votre dernier « coup de cœur musical » ?
Le prochain album de Biréli Lagrène qui n'est pas encore sorti.

L'événement musical que vous retenez ?
Johnny Hallyday au Stade de France

Une anecdote, un souvenir heureux de scène ?
La rencontre avec ma femme sur scène. C'est une chanteuse d'opéra.
On s'est pris par la main et nous ne nous sommes plus quittés.

Votre pire souvenir ?
Quand je me suis rompu deux ligaments à la cheville en direct à Orange en France et j'ai continué à chanter jusqu'au bout.

L'artiste/groupe que vous ne pourriez pas écouter plus d'une fois ?
Moi-même et mon premier disque sorti chez Barclay.

Si vous deviez chanter en duo, qui serait l'heureux(se) élu(e) ?
Elvis Presley, cela aurait été génial
J'ai connu Frank Sinatra malheureusement cela ne s'est pas fait.


Votre Playlist du moment ?
Les nouvelles compositions mélodiques de mes frères au piano.
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Si Maritau Rosa

E vui Durmiti Ancora

Parla più Piano

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There are also notes about a future tour, in April and May 2010, in France:

Du 17-04-10 au 18-04-10 - Chambéry
Du 20-04-10 au 21-04-10 - Paris
Du 22-04-10 au 23-04-10 - Lyon
Du 24-04-10 au 25-04-10 - Bordeaux
Du 27-04-10 au 28-04-10 - Dijon
Du 29-04-10 au 30-04-10 - Marseilles
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Du 01-05-10 au 02-05-10 - Toulouse
Du 04-05-10 au 05-05-10 - Lille
Du 06-05-10 au 07-05-10 - Metz
Du 08-05-10 au 09-05-10 - Strasbourg
Du 10-05-10 au 11-05-10 - Nice
Du 12-05-10 au 13-05-10 - Rouen
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And Roberto's website announce the release of a new double CD, "Le Jongleur de Notre Dame" by Jules Massenet, on August 24th. As well as his next appearances: Carmen at Royal Opera House London (October 3rd to 24th), Carmen at Metropolitan Opera New York (starting December 31st) and Cyrano de Bergerac at Teatro della Maestranza Sevilla (November 9th to 18th)


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On a beautiful Saturday morning...

... something from the past.
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Live in Turku with Placido Domingo - L'elisir D'amore - 1992


Live in Bucharest with Placido Domingo - La Boheme - 1994

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Live in Prague with Placido Domingo - Traviata - 1995

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L'amico Fritz - release dates and track list

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Deutsche Grammophon updated the page about this new release. Now they added the track list for the 2 CDs.

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The CD is already listed and can be preordered on :
- amazon.com and it will be released on October 6th 2009. The price is 37.98$ because it's IMPORT.
- amazon.co.uk and here the release date is October 5th 2009. The price is 15.69 UK pounds (be careful, the VAT is not included and you only see it when you're ready to make the payment). The track list is here too, but no audio preview for the moment.
- amazon.de, with the release date on October 2nd 2009. The price is 25.95 euro.
- Deutsche Grammophon, with the release date on October 1st 2009. Here it can't be preordered yet.

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New CD Releases - next season

Speaking about IMG Artists, it's interesting that you find information where you less expect. Reading the list of conductors that signed with them, I noticed one that I read about recently, Mr Albero Veronesi, the one who conduced the concert at Puccini Festival at Torre del Lago, Italy, in July.
This is the excerpt on his page at http://www.imgartists.com/
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Continually looking for ways to bring underexposed repertoire to a wider audience, Veronesi has embarked on a string of recording projects with Deutsche Grammophon, beginning in 2006 with a recording of Puccini's Edgar on which he collaborated with Placido Domingo and the Orchestra and Chorus of Santa Cecilia. In 2009, Deutsche Grammophon releases his album of rarely performed Puccini arias and duets sung by Domingo and Violetta Urmana with the Wiener Philharmoniker, as well as a recording of Mascagni's L'amico Fritz with Angela Gheorghiu, Roberto Alagna and the Deutsche Oper Berlin. Next season will see the release of three new recordings: Giordano's Fedora with Gheorghiu and Domingo, Leoncavallo's I Medici with Domingo, and Leoncavallo's I Pagliacci with Gheorghiu and Alagna. Veronesi has also recorded Leoncavallo's La Nuit de mai with Domingo on an album that includes several arias performed with Domingo and pianist Lang Lang.
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As L'amico Fritz is a Deutsche Grammophon production, I tend to think that the other two will be the same. But I don't remeber reading that Angela Gheorghiu performed Fedora on stage. So this might just be a new recording.
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Deutsche Grammophone has a special page for Alberto Veronesi. A very nice one, I might say. Check it out.

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Worldwide Exclusive Agreement With IMG Artists

When I was in Munich I saw Mr Jack Mastroiani coming out of the Opera House with Mrs Gheorghiu. I knew he was her manager but I didn't know that the contract with IMG Artists was signed recently, on May 5th 2009.
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This piece of information can be found of the website of IMG Artists (www.imgartists.com)

Tuesday, May 5, 2009 -- IMG Artists is proud to announce that internationally renowned Romanian soprano Angela Gheorghiu has recently signed an exclusive global management agreement with the company. The closer identification with IMG Artists, the world's leading artist management firm, is expected to enhance and expand Ms. Gheorghiu's image with international initiatives involving gala performances, touring, film, media and endorsements.
Senior Vice President J.F. Mastroianni will serve as Ms. Gheorghiu's general manager. He notes, "We are excited that Angela Gheorghiu has chosen IMG Artists as her exclusive general management. Angela is a unique artist who will finally have the benefit of a team of top international professionals dedicated to realizing the full potential of her multi-faceted talents as well as coordinating all aspects of her live performances, media opportunities, sponsorship and corporate activities. We are thrilled to have won Angela's confidence and to act in this strategic role in her career."
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Some other wordly famous artists signed with IMG Artist:
- Conductors: Vladimir Jurowski, Christian Zacharias, Yuri Temirkanov, Antonio Pappano, Nicola Luisotti
- Soloists: Helene Grimaud (piano), Elisabeta Leonskaya (piano), Murray Perahia (piano), Joshua Bell (violin), Julia Fisher (violin), Itzhak Perlman (violin), Steven Isserlis (cello)
- Vocal: Renee Fleming (soprano), Mirella Freni (soprano), Maria Guleghina (soprano), Kiri Te Kanawa (soprano), Deborah Voight (soprano), Joyce di Donato (mezzo), Susan Graham (mezzo), Anne Sophie von Otter (mezzo), Marius Brenciu (tenor), Lado Ataneli (baritone), Zeliko Lucic (baritone), Rene Pape (bass)

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On a very special day...

... be happy, shine and keep filling our hearts with joy!
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With all my love for you, always!
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A "Happy Birthday" song would be in order. LA MULTI ANI!

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A new concert confirmed for Tel Aviv

This concert is confirmed on the official site. Angela will sing on October 24th at Mann Auditorium in Tel Aviv, Israel. There's nothign more yet, but I'll dig it up. The the Hebrew version of the web site of the auditorium there's only one reference. October 24th - Gala Concert.
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And there is something else on EMI website, but I don't know if it's true or not because here the date of the concert is October 23rd. The conductor of (I guess) Israel Philharmonic Orchestra is Zubin Mehta (the website of the Philharmonic is not updated). And just as a quick note, Mr Mehta and the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra came to Bucharest, to perform at the George Enescu Festival, back in 2005. They are absolutely great! So if Angela Gheorghiu sings with them it would be amazing.

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Roberto in Classic FM Magazine


The September issue of Classic FM Magazine features an article about Roberto Alagna. There's nothing available online, not even the front cover. But according to the small picture posted on the website and the title "Murder on his hands", he talkes about his participation in Carmen at the ROH this fall, with Elina Garanca. I'm curious about this article as I'm going to London to see this opera. If anybody gets the magazine, please be so kind and tell us all.
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If you still haven't bought a ticket for Carmen at ROH, you can still try here. There are 5 performances: October 6th, 10th, 13th, 21st and 24th, all of them with Roberto Alagna as Don Jose, Elina Garanca as Carmen, Ildebrando D'Arcangelo as Escamillo and Liping Zhang as Micaela.
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There used to be another performance on October 3rd but now you can attend that one only if you win a ticket at Sun's lottery. Good luck and see you there!

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And the confirmation arrived

Angela Gheorghiu is coming again to Bucharest. September 19th, Constitution Square. The concert is confirmed on the official site.
Vlad Mirita is attending too.
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I'm counting down the days. A very long day at work just changed into somethng beautiful.
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Another hint. If you happen to be in Bucharest, there's another concert next day. Joseph Calleja is coming to Bucharest. It's an open air show during George Enescu Festival. And it's for free.

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Met Player for Free!

Try Met Player for FREE for 7 days.
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Two hundred and forty extraordinary Met performances are available to watch and listen to – on your computer – thanks to Met Player, the company's online streaming service.
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There are two choices:
1 - if you don't want to register you can wach certain arias
2 - you can register for a 7 day trial and you can choose what you want from the list. I advise you to do that. If you haven't seen the Met's productions yet, this is your chance. Browse the catalogue. There are so many interesting things there to watch and listen.
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Angela Gheorghiu appears in the followings:
- La Boheme (March 2th 1994) - AUDIO (Litherland, Leech, Robertson//Rizzi)
- La Traviata (February 11th 2006) - AUDIO (Kaufmann, Michaels-Moore//Armiliato)
- La Boheme (April 5th 2008) - VIDEO (Vargas, Tezier//Luisotti)
- La Rondine (January 10th 2009) - VIDEO (Alagna, Oropesa, Brenciu//Armiliato)
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Met Player introduced a new opera. La Cenerentola with Elina Garanca (May 9th 2009)

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Possibly Bucharest?

There is a piece of information that can be found on Vlad Mirita's web site. It says here that Angela Gheorghiu is coming to Bucharest. If I remember well what she told us in London... this might be true. The event is not yet confirmed. I'm waiting for news. They previously sung together in Cortona and Torre del Lago, Italy.
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http://vladmirita.com/
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It's not much. Just a date, September 19th 2009. "Days of Bucharest" it's an event organized by the Town Hall to celebrate a certain number of years from the date the name of the city appears in old papers.

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Angela in Top 5 with Pappano

There is a very interesting interview with Antonio Pappano in September issue of Gramphone. He recently recorded the Requiem by Verdi, a CD that will be released on September 7th with Anja Harteros, Sonia Ganassi, Rolando Villazon & Rene Pape, Orchestra e Coro dell’Accademia di Santa Cecilia. EMI launched a special microsite for this CD
He speaks a lot about the difficulties of this piece, how Verdi got to write it in the first place and how they all managed to record it.
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Gramphone makes a top 5 must-have Pappano recordings. And 3 of these 5 involve Angela Gheorghiu and/or Roberto Alagna.
La Rondine - EMI 1997
Tosca - EMI 2001
Don Carlos - EMI 1997
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I think there's something missing here, don't you think? It's the latest recording of Madama Butterfly. Well, maybe in the next interview with this great conductor. He returns to ROH for Tristan and Isolde, in October.

For further reading, Messa di Requiem is reviewd in several newspapers:
Sunday Times
Presto Classical

And if we're talking about Messa di Requiem by Verdi, Angela recorded this piece in 2001 with Berliner Philharmoniker conducted by Claudio Abbado under EMI. Also with Daniela Barcellona, Roberto Alagna and Julian Konstantinov.
On May 21st the DVD was also released.

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