Thursday, 4 September 2008

'Walkure' - Mario del Monaco

When I posted Mario del Monaco's majestic version of 'Nessun Dorma' not so long ago, it seemed to me his beautifully dark voice would be ideally suited to Wagner, and I wondered if he ever indulged.

To my delight, the latest Wagner Society newsletter tells me that indeed he had, and it's right there on YouTube!  Here he is,  in a scene from Die Walkure,  singing Ein Schwert verhiess mire de Vater (My father promised me a sword).  [Click the pic to go to YouTube]

There's a few shaky moments, but as one commenter at YouTube says 
Finally, Wagner sung with warm blood and a pair ofballs. Never will we see his like again. I think this kind of singing is what I miss most when I go to the opera; that tightrope, full-throttled, edge-of-your-seat, 'maybe won't make it to the end of the opera' singing.
Just listen to him sing "Walse! Walse!" To give you a bit of context, he's preparing for battle, girding his loins for teh fight of his life -- and ours.  Imagine Muhammmed Ali before his bout in Zaire with George Foreman, if our lives depended on it.

And if you think Wagner's not for you, then just read this from Sex'n'Drugs'n'Wagner by Peter Bloch, editor of Penthouse magazine:
“The Ring, now being performed at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City, violates just about every modern taboo imaginable. Moreover, history proves it dangerous. Consider a warning label that was once proposed: Warning: Contains lyrics or matter which describes or advocates one or more of the following: suicide; explicit sexual acts including but not limited to rape; sodomy; incest; bestiality and sadomasochism; murder; morbid violence; or the use of illegal drugs.” Wagner’s epic manages to include almost all of these offences, often cloaked in seductive,
heart-pounding music whose rhythms all too often can move an incautious listener to be carried away by - even identify with - the evils being acted out on stage.

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