Page 1 of 1

The difference between the most boring and most exciting opera

Posted: 04 Jan 2016, 15:11
by Jimlejim
It seems like it's a common myth that people who love opera or classical music, love all of it. We opera lovers know that's obviously the case. So what's the difference between your most beloved and most disliked opera? :?:

Case in point, Dr. Kurtzman's aticle "Anything but Wagner": http://www.operavivra.com/articles/anything-but-wagner/

Re: The difference between the most boring and most exciting opera

Posted: 05 Jan 2016, 07:26
by onionscd
I'd expand that to say: Anything but German. Okay, there are some really nice things in German opera. But as entire works, they don't do much for me. The guttural German is part of it. Also, the style.

Give me Verdi and Puccini. And a few other Italians. Throw in a couple of French composers too. What's the old argument? Wagner wrote for the orchestra, Verdi wrote for the voice. And, that's why I listen to opera: for the voice, not the orchestra.

Re: The difference between the most boring and most exciting opera

Posted: 05 Jan 2016, 21:01
by Orestes
We all have our small niches.

I grew from just listening to veristic and romantic music, to baroque and contemporary operas. If one does not force one self to try new, different things, the opera scene will never again evolve.

The most boring operas is however, in my mind, Meyerbeer's Les Huguenots. Nothing happens.

The most exciting opera is a well performed version of Berg's Wozzeck. At least for the moment.

Re: The difference between the most boring and most exciting opera

Posted: 05 Jan 2016, 22:47
by antfreire
Forgive me if I sound vulgar but to me modern opera is to my ears what castor oil was for my mouth when I was a kid.

Re: The difference between the most boring and most exciting opera

Posted: 05 Jan 2016, 23:29
by shutko
Orestes wrote:We all have our small niches.

I grew from just listening to veristic and romantic music, to baroque and contemporary operas. If one does not force one self to try new, different things, the opera scene will never again evolve.

The most boring operas is however, in my mind, Meyerbeer's Les Huguenots. Nothing happens.

The most exciting opera is a well performed version of Berg's Wozzeck. At least for the moment.
That's quite a bold claim, I always put the Les Huguenots duet as one of the most impressive and beautiful vocally challenging duets.

Re: The difference between the most boring and most exciting opera

Posted: 07 Jan 2016, 23:17
by Geoff
Well, Jimlejim ( a strange name, but never mind) I see that you mention Dr. Kurzman's article 'anything but Wagner.' I suppose that generally speaking, I go along with that. My problem is that I have difficulty in separating Wagner the person (I nearly said Wagner the man, but in these days of political correctness someone would be bound to accuse me of being homophobic - I long for the day when someone of major influence has the courage to publicly say 'to hell with political correctness and to hell with the harpies who gnaw it to death" ' ) from the man and his music. I believe it was Samuel Langthorne Clements, a.k.a. Mark Twain, who said "Wagner's music is better than it sounds." As a human being, Wagner was a perfectly ghastly person - just research him. As an orchestral writer, his music is sumptuously fantastic but when it come to the voice, he is destructive unless for example your name is Lauritz Melchior. Anyway, I recommend listening to the gloriously hilarious analysis of Wagner's ring, as delivered by the wonderful Anna Russell following which all will be well with the world.
Regard,
Geoff.

Re: The difference between the most boring and most exciting opera

Posted: 04 Sep 2018, 16:16
by Rodolfo
For me, probably any French opera. I have not found a French opera that I could not put down and leave down after one listen, except perhaps for Saint-Saens Henry VIII.

Boring: Strauss' Capriccio.