Elysian

If, just for five minutes, you want to feel perfectly at peace and believe that there is a thing such as utter purity in this world, check out the clip above.

It’s a bit as if Gabriel went for a smoke and left Eden’s Gates unguarded for a minute, allowing you to shake off any concept of alienated individualist existence and the usual binary baggage. Philippe Jaroussky’s angelic counter/soprano blends perfectly with the bottomless warmth and depth of Marie-Nicole Lemieux’s contralto, both of them bypassing any assignations of gender or age.

Jean-Christophe Spinosi, the conductor, describes the “Cum dederit” (first piece of the sample) as a music of “mouvement immobile”, of motionless movement, citing the image of Venice at dusk, when, being rowed across on of the canales, you have the impression of not moving forward at all since the waters are so still.

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Aural Pilgrimage to Paris: the “I Capuleti e i Montecchi” broadcast

The pilgrimage was a little more extensive than initially expected. On Saturday afternoon, for the first time in three years, my internet connection acted up. There was no way to load any page or establish any contact with Radio France. AAAAAAAAAaaaaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrrrgggggggggghhhhhhh!!!!!

I don’t know what karmic wrongdoings I committed this past week, but they must have been grave. At 7:30, I was desperate, cursing, and short of throwing things at my modem.

The solution came at the hands of the best girlfriend ever, who calmly suggested “Why don’t we go to your institute downtown? You’ve got internet there, right?”

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Mezzo Alert: Vive la Radio France!

For everyone not in Zurich today to witness Kasaraova’s role debut in “Carmen” (either at the opera house or in the public viewing area at Bellevue): there’s another mezzo role debut worth checking out tonight!

At 7:30 p.m. European time (GMT+1), Radio France streams one of the recent (May) Paris performances of Bellini’s “I Capuleti e i Montecchi” online.

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Mezzo Watch #3: Joyce DiDonato

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A couple of years ago, I had dinner at an old friend’s house. Over the third glass of wine, we retired to the living room and ended up talking about the Händelfestspiele Halle – and my friend started raving about a Händel duet evening that had aired on TV, but that I had missed. So she dug out her video tape, and it was one of these moments where you think you just discovered the route to Eldorado.

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