[clip courtesy of PeterBudweiser]
Sometimes, I browse “La Calisto” for a pick-me-up.
While I will always argue that Cavalli’s “La Calisto” is not a lesbian opera – that would be anachronistic and misreads the narrative – but it’s a woman singing about desire for another woman, and that’s gay enough for me. And depending on the casting – barihunk in drag or Diana after dark? – you even get two ladies making out to go with it.
Shallow, I know. It usually manages to make me smile, though.
Or, as in this case, it makes me forget about all of it, blink at the screen, and say “Holy smoke, would you listen to that treatment of mid-17th century ornamentation, and also, is it getting warm in here?!”
While it feels really wrong to be this enticed by the voice of a singer a decade my junior (I guess this will only increase with the years, won’t it? I now browse opera house casts and feel like a cradle robber), I can’t help it.
Sure, the voice is young, you can hear that, but there is a warmth and sizable core to the sound that many Early Music sopranos don’t have at their disposal. It’s not just that “clear, fresh spring” sound, but there’s a sensuality and lush warmth to it that made me repeat the clip again and again. Restino imbalsamate, indeed.
And I ended up appreciating the clarity of diction, and the truly excellent technical handling of the ornamentation, but most of all, I ended up thinking “Hot damn, I wonder where she’ll be in a decade.”
And I hope I’ll get to hear it.
Ladies and gentlewomen: Laila Salome Fischer . Definitely one to watch out for.
PS. She’s blogging a bit (in German), too. Queen of the Night with ukulele continuo. (No, seriously).