Author Topic: General Opera News  (Read 150404 times)

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Offline zamyrabyrd

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Re: General Opera News
« Reply #740 on: January 05, 2018, 05:21:25 AM »
I've never really seen it like that. I think Carmen was a free spirit, who used men as men often use women. I'm sure she'd have been just fine if she'd stuck with men like Escamillo. It's always the quiet ones you have to be careful of.

Like Micaela? Just kidding.
Apparently in Prosper Mérimée's book, Carmen had a few more tricks up her sleeve, like stealing his watch, as he wrote the story in the first person. Carlos Saura read from the book in his own dance film on Carmen (starting a fad of would be flamenco-ists including myself), saying that she had "wolf's eyes" and she "always lied".
The reason she was arrested by Don José in the cigar factory was her carving out x's in a co-worker's face. She seduced him into a life of crime and even used him to attract other guys. This sort of rounds out her character.
"I write to discover what I know."
 ― Flannery O'Connor

Offline Tsaraslondon

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Re: General Opera News
« Reply #741 on: January 06, 2018, 02:37:47 AM »
Like Micaela? Just kidding.
Apparently in Prosper Mérimée's book, Carmen had a few more tricks up her sleeve, like stealing his watch, as he wrote the story in the first person. Carlos Saura read from the book in his own dance film on Carmen (starting a fad of would be flamenco-ists including myself), saying that she had "wolf's eyes" and she "always lied".
The reason she was arrested by Don José in the cigar factory was her carving out x's in a co-worker's face. She seduced him into a life of crime and even used him to attract other guys. This sort of rounds out her character.

Actually I always think Micaela quite a strong character too. She handles herself pretty well with the soldiers in Act I and proves herself quite brave when she goes to find Jose with the smugglers. It's wrong to portray her as a mousy milksop. Like many village women, she has quite a bit of pluck.

\"A beautiful voice is not enough.\" Maria Callas

Offline zamyrabyrd

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Re: General Opera News
« Reply #742 on: January 07, 2018, 09:05:35 AM »
Maria Callas portrayed a more vixenish, even disdainful Carmen, than most singers. 

Finding the right living exemplar of Carmen was the premise of Saura's film in 1983.
Back then I ran the video countless times, enrolled in a flamenco course and must have watched the tabacalara scene at least 50x or more. I loved the raw singing and the faces of the women pounding on the table.
Now it is hard to find the whole scene online but fortunately I still have a VHS copy that hasn't yet disintegrated.

This Carmen is also on fire:
<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/6fAkVNxmV5E" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/6fAkVNxmV5E</a>
"I write to discover what I know."
 ― Flannery O'Connor

Offline Tsaraslondon

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Re: General Opera News
« Reply #743 on: January 08, 2018, 04:05:17 AM »
I too love the Carlos Saura film.

As for Callas, I think her unconventional, intelligently thought out Carmen enthralling. Callas, whose views on male/female relationships were entirely conventional, is on record as stating that she didn't much care for the character of Carmen, because she treats men the way men have traditionally treated women, and that is how she plays her. Carmen is actually a very modern woman, who doesn't believe her existence is defined by men, and, even in the face of death, she absolutely refuses to bow down to their will.

I review her recording on my blog https://tsaraslondon.wordpress.com/2017/01/06/the-callas-carmen/.
\"A beautiful voice is not enough.\" Maria Callas

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