Tea with Cinnamon:)

Hey, opera lovers!
How are you? I’m fine, by the way. Though I was not writing for a while cause I had a lack of inspiration for it and didn’t want to force myself but…it doesn’t mean that nothing operatic has happened to me! On the contrary, I’ve watched and listened a lot in October and in the beginning of November so I’d like to tell you about this experience in a sort of a messy post:). I decided to call it «Tea with Cinnamon» as I love this drink very much and imagine myself sitting in an armchair with a hot mug and talking with you about everything! (Oh! That sounds a little bit weird:)). Join me and maybe such posts will come out regularly:).
Photo: Marty Sohl
As Met has started its HD series, of course, I’ve got stuck to it immediately! For the first time I watched Verdi’s «Macbeth» and also refreshed my memory with «Le nozze di Figaro»! And I enjoyed them both a lot!!! Macbeth is a great theatrical dramatic masterpiece which thrills, frightens and amazes at the same time! I can’t say that I would watch it all the time but it’s a powerful Verdi’s piece like nothing else (or maybe like his «Otello» but I’ve not got to know it yet!). Listening to this music and watching the action, I really got eager to read Shakespeare’s original text. I think I’m mature enough for that now. As I’d predicted in my review Anna did a great job! She was a queen of that night! The evil, manipulative queen!!! And vocally she managed the difficulties of this part very well!
Photo: Ken Howard
As for «Le Nozze», it’s an endless joy of music, libretto and singing! I know many bloggers wrote about this new production and how they hated the set. And I partly agree with them. I like the concept of transparency in the house and that everyone knows everything but visually it looks very cold and not cosy at all. But the rest is perfect! The cast made me laugh a lot with all the gestures, intonations and facial expressions. The director Richard Eyre is a master. I guess he is very scrupulous with the text cause every word is reflected somehow by a singer on stage. And I love it!!!
Photo: "Global city" Надежда Плотникова
Ballets also are in my list. I’ve rewatched «Spartacus», the production of The Bolshoi Theatre. I don’t know anything better than this in a ballet world! I just can’t find the right words to describe my admiration when I listen to its music, see its choreography…Love it! Love it! Love it! I’ve already dedicated a whole post to «Spartacus» here. So I just wanna quickly say: «Go watch it live!!!».
Photo: Елена Ощепкова
At my local opera house there’s been a premiere recently – «La Bayadère» by Ludwig Minkus. It was a new thing for me and I expected a lot from it (as I adore another Minkus’ ballet «Don Quixote») but…I would say that it’s rather usual. Don’t get me wrong, in general, it’s a pleasant performance but you can see the same in many other ballets. And the plot is just an Indian «Giselle» (the last scene is almost identical!). I don’t want to offend ballet lovers at all but that’s how it works for me.

Russian TV channel «Kultura» finally showed a recital of Ildar Abdrazakov, Vasily Laduke and Kristina Mkhitaryan. That day I turned on TV mostly to see the first two guys:). Ildar and Vasily demonstrated their great vocal skills and impressing artistic performance in each number. If you’re reading my blog for a while, you know that Ildar Abdrazakov is one of my favorite singers. And his final «Aleko» moved me into tears. And I can imagine the effect when you hear him live! Great concert! I’ll attach the video file of this recital below for you! Enjoy!

Photo: Deutsche Grammophon
October and November have been also enriched with new releases! Elina Garanca has presented us her new CD «Meditation». It contains sacred songs by Bizet, Mascagni, Puccini and others. By and large, this recording is made for meditation indeed. I mean it’s perfect for lounging in an armchair or resting in the countryside when you can relax and think about nothing. It’s not a type of recording which you listen to all the time, it’s very special. And that’s what I like about it!
Photo: Decca Classics
Another exciting release is «St Petersburg» by Cecilia Bartoli. It’s a new journey to the world of baroque music! This time it’s the Russian baroque which was super exciting for me!!! My personal favorite aria is «Idu na smert’». It’s so touching and tender. Cecilia’s pronunciation is very good though she doesn’t speak Russian! For me this album is very good but not the best of all her recordings in the context of a track list. Anyway, it’s a pleasure to hear Cecilia’s voice and a great gift for her fans!
Lately a huge amount of my time is dedicated to the project called «Bolshaya opera» (or «Big opera» in English). It’s a TV contest among opera singers which is shown on a Russian television. Now it’s the third season of this project and this year it’s become international. I love watching it!!! It’s super interesting and educational! The jury includes Elena Obraztsova, Galina Kalinina, Dmitri Bertman and Ioan Holender. The third season is definitely the strongest one; all singers are very talented with good voices. After each episode I write a review on my Russian blog. If you speak Russian, you can find it here.   
                                                                                                      
This is the end of our first «tea party» together:). And I hope it’s not the last one! Tell me what you’ve been listening/watching/reading recently? Leave comments below.

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