Monday, August 12, 2013

Just Another Manic Monday Mozart – Liliana Nikiteanu is Dorabella

It's fascinating to see how various directors/producers treat Dorabella in Mozart's Cosi fan tutte, especially in her rather over-the-top first act recitative and aria. In this 2000 Zurich Oper performance conducted by Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Liliana Nikiteanu really puts the drama in Drama Queen. This recording also stars Cecilia Bartoli as Fiordiligi and Agnes Baltsa as Despina. One reviewer complained that it's too many mezzos. Is there really any such thing as too many mezzos?

8 comments:

  1. No. There's no such thing as too many mezzos.

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    1. Indeed, I am surprised the phrase "too many mezzos" doesn't simply explode due to massive internal contradiction any time someone tries to write it.

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    2. I love the image of the words flying apart as they appear on the computer screen. Meanwhile, I love this hyperventilated version of this aria!

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  2. Ddollingerd@aol.comAugust 15, 2013 at 10:09 PM

    I adore Mezzos as much as Dr. B but this taping of Cosi has to be my least favorite, principally because of the conducting of Harnoncourt which I find perverse. Either incredibly slow or fast, Harnoncourt has ideas with seem at odds with the music. Roberto Sacca has not been blessed with a pleasant voice and these essays into Mozart are hardly competitive (I bought this Cosi packaged with a Don Giovanni for an incredibly low twenty bucks!) with other versions. My other objection to casting three mezzos in the three female rose is that the vocal center of gravity is low. I am presuming that Bartoli is singing Per pieta and Come scoglio in the right key but the sound is not what one usually expects in this music, especially for one who grew up with Schwarzkopf and Della Casa. It is interesting that she has never sung this role any other place since these performances

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    1. I've not seen the whole performance, but I'd love to -- at least to see Agnes Baltsa as Despina. Roberto Sacca never struck me as a Mozart tenor, either.

      It wouldn't be the first time NH was accused of perverse tempi. On the other hand, when he gets it right, it's REALLY right.

      I am sure CB came to the conclusion that she and Fiordiligi were not a good fit for one another.

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  3. I love NIkiteanu's Dorabella, definitely my favourite Dorabella. So perfectly nutty and naughty but not quite slutty ;-) I'm not a big fan of the production, however, and I think yes, it's possible to have too many mezzos! Not a fan of the other two.

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    1. What if it were three mezzos you really really liked? THEN would it be too many? :)

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