Monday, July 29, 2013

Just Another Manic Monday Mozart – Anja Harteros is Elettra

Since the Earworm commented specifically on Anja Harteros on my post yesterday about this Idomeneo, I decided to see if Harteros' version of Ekettra's final aria was online. Her Elettra is not just lovelorn, frustrated, or merely p-ssed off—she has literally gone mad. 

This Elettra is not singing about metaphorical snakes and serpents tearing at her. They’re not really there; but she sees them! And when she calls for a sword, Neptune conveniently wanders by to hand her a dagger. I also love the way that Frau Harteros, during the (tumultuous) applause, keeps the insanity flowing. The translation below is by Opera Cat (whose blog, sadly, has not been updated in quite a while.)

Oh smania! oh furie! oh disperata Elettra!Oh madness! Oh fury! Oh desperate Electra!
Addio amore, addio speme!Farewell love, farewell hope!
Ah il cor nel seno già m'ardono l'eumenidi spietate.The cruel Furies already burn my heart in my breast.
Misera, a che m'arresto?Wretched woman, why do I hesitate?
Sarò in queste contrade della giojaShall I be in these lands
e trionfi spettatrice dolente?a grieving onlooker of joy and triumphs?
Vedrò Idamante alla rivale in braccioShall I see Idamante in my rival's arms
e dall'uno e dall'altra mostrarmi a dito?and show myself to be pointed at by him and by her?
Ah no, il germano OresteAh, no; my brother Orestes
ne' cupi abissi io vuò seguir.I want to follow into the dark abysses.
Ombra infelice! Lo spirto mio accogli,Unhappy shade! Receive my spirit,
or' or compagna m'avrai là nell'inferno,even now you will have me as a companion there in the underworld,
a sempiterni guai, al pianto eternal woe, in eternal weeping.
D'Oreste, d'AjaceI have the torments of Orestes,
Ho in seno i tormenti,of Ajax, in my breast;
D'Aletto la faceAlecto's torch
Già morte mi da.already gives me death.
Squarciatemi il cuoreTear apart my heart,
Ceraste, serpenti,horned snakes, serpents,
O un ferro il doloreor a sword will end
in me finirà.the pain in me.

Elettra (Electra): a figure from ancient Greek mythology and tragedy, a member of the cursed House of Atreus. She was the daughter of Agamemnon (king of Mycenae) and Clytemnestra, and sister of Iphigenia and Orestes.
Orestes: pursued by the Furies after killing his mother
Ajax: a Greek hero who was driven mad by Athena and finally killed himself
Alecto: one of the Furies

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