Friday, 11 June 2010

A little bit of opera

But I tell you what. Maybe it's the high drama of the recent situation, but the old place is ringing with opera.

The Old Man is lapping it up and the CD collection is turned over for all the opera that can be fancied.

'Cept I can't fancy Wagner. Sorry. No. The Old Man thinks it's very fine and stirring und Sturm und Drang und wonderful. I just groan and cover my ears:
"Not again. This bloomin' theme is coming round the mountain again. Never sing it once, when you can sing it three times in a row, that's old Richard's motto."

I have only ever walked out of two operas. If I remember rightly.

One was Rossini's "Count d'Ory". (It was boring and the production stank.) And the other was Wagner's "Die Meistersingers." Which I left because I was falling asleep. You know that tortured feeling of nodding off and waking yourself with a lurch? Because you know ... you really know... that you just mustn't fall asleep here.... you just mustn't fall asleep..... asleep....and..... snore...or ..... something......

Me? I am a late convert to opera I will admit. I always used to think, in my rash youth, that opera was ludicrous and "So false, darling". But I was fortunate in that the first opera I was persuaded to go and see was Mozart's "The Magic Flute". Which was splendidly unreal. Particularly when the Queen of the Night come flapping in on the back of some kind of Big Bird in the production that I saw. I think. So I enjoyed meself immensely.

But then I got took to see Puccini's "La Boheme". And that set me back a little. Stereotypical robust and strapping lady supposedly dying of consumption and bellowing out her final aria.

Anyway - have just blubbed me way through the final act of the same - on telly- BBC4 - with Anna Netrebko and Rolando Villazón. You can see that I've got used to the notion of opera now.

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