Saturday, August 17, 2013

Salzburger Festspielen – Workouts and Condiments

Luca in Guglielmo's Costumes
According to an article in der Standard in Austria, Franz Welser-Möst withdrew from the Salzburg Festival Cosi Fan Tutte (to be broadcast Saturday, August 24 on Ö1 Radiodue to the singer-unfriendly curtain time of 11 AM (This may not be news to anyone else, but I never heard exactly what his objection was.) Clearly, Herr Welser-Möst has no experience as a church musician. 

Luca Pisaroni is more pragmatic: "When I have to sing at 11 AM...I get up at 7 AM and go to the gym, or run a bit."* 
 "...damit ich um elf Uhr zu singen vermag, viele Konzerte finden ja am Vormittag statt. Wenn das so ist, stehe ich eben um sieben Uhr auf und gehe ins Fitnessstudio oder laufe ein bisschen."
Naturally, Luca is also diplomatic, reminding us that as a singer, he has only to answer for his own performance, while the conductor is responsible for everything. 

And in other news, Italian-American-British conductor Antonio Pappano informs us that "Musikalischer Ausdruck ist kein Tomatenketchup…" which, to me, seems rather obvious. To be fair, there is more to the quote. He continues: "Musical expression is not tomato ketchup, which is poured over the whole piece, but has to do with hundreds of things." (Actually, his expansion on his anti-metaphor is also kind of a “no? duh!” comment.) You can read the whole interview at the link above. To be fair, I think his Deutsch is nicht so gut als Luca's. That being said, his Don Carlo yesterday certainly cut the mustard, and the audience seemed to relish it! [insert groans here]
Meanwhile, back at Cosi, the biggest question on my mind is: how has Sven-Eric Bechtolf managed to improve on his wonderful Cosi interpretation for Zurich a few years ago. Well, that and how can we get to see it without flying to Salzburg? (We can hear it on Austria's Ö1 Radio next Saturday at 19:30, Salzburg time.) 

Speaking of Ö1 Radio, you can hear today's performance of Verdi's Giovanna d'Arco with Netrebko and Domingo there now.

*Translation of Luca is mine. Translation of Tony is courtesy of Google Translate.


  1. Moderately off-topic, but is there such a thing as non-tomato ketchup?

    1. Yes. Apparently, the original was an Asian sauce made from fish and vinegar, and a later version was made from mushrooms.(Come to think of it Hoisin sauce is quite similar to ketchup.) The only common ingredient in all the ketchup (or catsup) recipes is the vinegar. You can buy ketchup made with mushrooms, bananas, mango, or peppers; and there are recipes available for ketchup made with a variety of fruit. The tomato variety became known in the 19th century, but only became really popular when some guy named Heinz started bottling and selling it.

    2. And now I know! I had never really thought of ketchup, conceptually, as being separable from tomatoes. (The mango one sounds particularly intriguing.)

    3. mmmmm mango. See how educational blogging can be? I often thing of non-opera things I'd like to blog about but I never thought I'd be writing about ketchup!

    4. Interesting info on ketchup; I always thought it was a bastardisation of bouillon de tomates...

      ...and nobody should have to do anything sensible before noon ;-)

    5. Hey Dehggial! Thanks for replying to my older posts. It really takes me back to read through what I was thinking about a year ago (when I still had a full-time job and no mortgage, and had plenty of time to blog!)

  2. I was on nights, there's nothing else to do but read blogs wholesale ;-) more night shifts coming up starting tonight. No mortgage, though, I's a filthy renter and will be for the foreseeable future. Sometimes I reply to your old posts and then can't remember where so I start my search over ;-) it's also a good excuse when avoiding stuff I should be doing...


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