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Spotted in the audience - updated

Via the Facebook fan page.

Yes, the video (thanks, C!) shows that Angela attended the Gala honoring Placido Domingo's 70th birthda that took place yesterday, at Teatro Real Madrid. No, she didn't sing.
I saw the concert live on Duna TV and it was touching, with lots of guest, beautiful arias (including Bryn's "Tre sbirri" and Erwin's "Madamina, il catalogo e questo"), lots of nice words and memories, some tears here and there.


  1. First reviews of "Fedora":

  2. @Newbee - I already read the one in the Independent. Not too many impressions.
    The one in The Times can only be read by those who pay the subscription. can you help me with the text? I'd like to now what they're saying. Thanks!

  3. I've got the same problem with The Times. Unfortunately, I've found only small extracts from the text.

  4. Maybe somebody else could help...

  5. The Times :

    Rated to 3 stars

    The tenor, conductor and opera director turns 70 next week, still has the energy to try to breathe life into Giordano

    The catchy phrase of Plácido Domingo’s autumn years, “If I rest, I rust”, is now a trademarked motto, displayed with pride on the artist’s official website. Seventy years old next Friday, his protean activities as a tenor, conductor and opera company director never stop, not least in the recording studio. Every year that distinctive, ruefully lyrical voice is heard in a new recording from Deutsche Grammophon — some further instalment in the ongoing series devoted to the Italian verismo repertoire conducted by Alberto Veronesi.

    Puccini’s early opera Edgar started the ball rolling in 2006. This time we meet Umberto Giordano’s opera Fedora of 1898 — handsomely popular for a few decades, then subject to mid 20th-century neglect, now relegated to occasional revivals. Two of them, from the 1990s, previously featured Domingo (they are available now on DVD). This present recording was made in Brussels three years ago.

    Even Domingo’s adventurous range in the autumn of his life doesn’t stretch to Fedora herself, the wealthy Russian Princess desperate for love and revenge first in St Petersburg, then in Paris, finally in the Swiss Alps. Angela Gheorghiu, cloudy of tone if impassioned, takes care of that role.

    Instead Domingo is comfortably ensconced as Loris, the Count who shoots dead Fedora’s intended bridegroom but still manages to win her heart — the pyrrhic victory in a fusty plot originally devised by the prolific French dramatist Victorien Sardou.

    At the premiere the great Caruso made his name as Loris singing the opera’s best known titbit, Amor ti vieta. Domingo sails through with increased vibrato and some thinned top notes —- customary signs of a noble voice knocked about just a touch by age. But he has plenty of heart, a key ingredient in a part whose dramatic requirements are few apart from appearing ardent, unfortunate, and misunderstood. Backed by stage experience in the opera, Domingo conveys these qualities easily.

    Gheorghiu’s voice comes with fewer fault lines, though touches of age would actually suit the vengeful, lovesick Fedora, a mixed-up character not in the first flush of youth, created by Sardou for Sarah Bernhardt. “Torment the women!” — that was Sardou’s advice for young dramatists anxious for success. Fedora is certainly tortured, though with Gheorghiu’s creamy vocal demeanour we don’t always feel it. Singing the role for the first time, she seems a little distant from her words. The vocal contrast couldn’t be starker with the Georgian soprano Nino Machaidze, sunshine incarnate in the superfluous if decorative role of Countess Olga.

    Veronesi, with the orchestra and chorus of La Monnaie in Brussels, lavishes affection on Giordano’s score, though fondness alone can’t transform a dog’s dinner into a feast. Skilfully contrived, if melodically weak, Giordano’s opera fails to shake off the yoke of its faded plot. It worked for Bernhardt on the dramatic stage; as an opera, it worked for Caruso. But now, today, with Domingo and Gheorghiu? Worth the try, anyway.

    (Deutsche Grammophon)