Friday, July 25, 2014

Gratuitous Friday – Malin Hartelius is Vitellia (Non piu di fiori)



And here is a link to the complete performance recorded at Barbican Hall on February 22, 2012. Louis Langrée conducts the Deustcher Kammerchor and the Deutsche Kammer Philharmonie Bremen, which also features Michael Schade as Tito and Alice Coote as Sesto. 

11 comments:

  1. Since you linked to your other post relating to the performance, what did you think about it (I mean the whole thing, not just MH - especially knowing you don't like AC in trouser roles)? I wasn't all that impressed with MH as Vitellia. I think she sounds too nice.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ...but I must admit she sounds gorgeous if not frazzled here. I must dust up that performance and listen to it again.

      Delete
    2. Well, although MH really lacks the low notes for this role (and the high D, but I hate to quibble about one note). But I like the fact that she doesn't go full-on b#tch in this performance. For me it gives Vitellia a little more depth. I like AC SINGing Sesto, I just find her less than convincing as a boy on stage. Michael Schade IS Tito as far as I am concerned. Although I like a bit of histrionics, I do worry about him getting a little shouty in favor of drama over musicality. He seems to get more and more shouty as he matures. I need to go back to John at operaramblings to see how MS did as Tito in Toronto last year ("Tito in Toronto" sounds like a long lost Gluck opera! )

      All of this commentary is based on what I remember from listening in the car a while back. I guess I need to go back and give it another listen. I'm looking forward to heating your further impressions.

      Delete
  2. I admit I sometimes wonder if I'm not short-changing myself by always expecting a ruthless seductress from Vitellia. I know she's got valid reasons for acting the way she does, it's just the text seems so obvious with her. I'll try to expand my mind ;-) Schade is da man, I agree. I think he was still chewing scenery in Toronto.

    I wish I had some musical talent, I'd love composing miniature faux-Baroque (or faux-belcanto) operas and Tito in Toronto would be just along those lines.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think the the text makes it easy to paint Vitellia as a one-woman revenge machine. I like to think there's something else in there. It's like.. she is so clever, what if she were to use that cleverness for good. Is it self-esteem issues or just an over-inflated sense of entitlement that keeps her from going directly to Tito?

      You could do a whole series of Tito operas: Tito in Toledo, Tito in Tampa, Tito in Torino...

      Delete
    2. >>Is it self-esteem issues or just an over-inflated sense of entitlement that keeps her from going directly to Tito?<<

      I often wondered. I think she's intelligent enough to realise Sesto is no sniper material (or Emperor material, for that matter) so the plan is flawed from the start. If Sesto actually killed Tito then what? It's not like Publio and the Imperial Guard would've crowned him Emperor, even less crowned her Empress on her own. The murder plan was just her rash thinking. Vitellia I think is an intelligent woman with a very volatile side. I think she never really meant for Tito to die which is why she waited for a while for him to notice her. Maybe she was too proud and didn't want to beg, maybe there was some sort of social protocol she couldn't ignore. Even beyond that, Tito seems to be out of reach to everybody but Sesto and Publio. Publio doesn't like her, so she seduces Sesto in hopes he'd intercede for her. Maybe Sesto does indeed have more backbone than most productions have us think and didn't want to lose her to Tito ;-) so he didn't do his part...

      Delete
    3. I hadn't thought about the social protocol thing. I am sure there were gender barriers to her simply phoning Tito and asking him to have a chat about this whole Augusto/Augusta thing. I also wonder sometimes if Vitellia's just jealous because Tito likes Sesto better than her.

      As far as if Tito really were killed, I think Publio has his own designs on Emperordom. And I think you're right that there's no way he'd let Sesto OR Vitellia take the throne. (Well, except in the 2003 Salzburg Kusej version. Luca's Publio seems so hot to trot that he might just support anyone who was willing to get it on with him!) In fact in that latest Bayerische Staatsoper version, I seriously expected Publio to stab Tito to death with the scissors during the finale

      Delete
    4. I bet Vitellia is also jealous of Tito's affection for Sesto.

      >>(Well, except in the 2003 Salzburg Kusej version. Luca's Publio seems so hot to trot that he might just support anyone who was willing to get it on with him!)<<

      Haha, indeed. In Se al volto he's basically telling Vitellia and Sesto "psst, let's have a threesome and I'll tell Tito Lentulo tripped on his robe whilst trying it on and fell on his sword".

      The Bayerische Publio is something else, even more unsettled than Schade's Tito. Speaking of which, here's my cast for the most unsettled Clemenza: those two, JDD's Sesto, Nikiteanu's Annio, possibly Varady's Vitellia (from the Bohm recording, she's more chill in the Gardiner one) and I'm struggling with Servillia as they are usually the voice of reason.

      Delete
    5. Servilla is tricky. I used to assume she'd be younger than the boys, since Annio was asking Sesto's permission to marry her. But often on stage she seems older than both of them. I rather liked Simona Šaturová's tough portrayal at La Monnaie last fall.

      I think it's time for another fantasy opera casting post.

      By the way have you read Earworm's take on Servillia's take on the Clemenza plot?

      http://earwormopera.wordpress.com/2011/11/10/this-is-how-i-spend-parts-of-my-afternoons/

      Delete
    6. Oh, and you've got mail!

      Delete
    7. Šaturová is one of my favourites, too. I thought maybe women back then needed permission from "the man of the house" before marrying, even if the man of the house was their younger brother. Sometimes I see Servillia as older, sometimes younger, it seems to work both ways. It has developed into my own Tito fan-fic ;-) (I know, I've no shame). Which reminds me, is there such a thing as opera fan-fic out there?

      Do bring back the fantasy opera casting! I shied away from contributing to the old ones.

      Yes, I read Earworm's post about Servillia's take on Clemenza, one of the most dead-on Tito-related things I've seen so far (along with eyesometric's one about what Sesto's shirt thinks). Talk about getting the characters :-)

      Delete

Comments are very welcome! They won't be moderated; but rude, abusive, and/or radically off-topic posts will be removed.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...