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Posted October 1, 2010
The world is diminished with the news of the death of Beverly Sills. Her impact on American Opera will never be matched. She was an Original, a woman of great beauty, creative intelligence not only in her vocal production, pyrotechniques, and range, but also in her commitment to acting and drama, bringing a far larger audience to the opera houses with both her gifts as an artist and her compassion for those experiencing opera for the first time. Her performances were full of life, uncannily beautiful in singing and deportment, and aided by her own insistence on the use of supertitles above the proscenium arch, a gracious bow to her audiences to draw them into the stories of the works. La Sills had the intelligence to make her final bow on the stage when signs of vocal weakness began to show. Everything she did was form her heart and her brain and her humanity. Finding a work to call a signature role for her wide repertoire is difficult, but for most of us her creation of Cleopatra as captured in this recording of Handel's 'Giulio Cesare' is a zenith. She sparkles and stuns with her effortless singing and embellishments and she is accompanied by her old friends Norman Treigle, Spiro Malas, Michael Devlin, Maureen Forrester, Beverly Wolff, Dominic Cossa and of course, Julius Rudel who with Sills brought the New York City Opera to importance. Yes, the recording is old and now dated and now that Handel's jewel is a frequently performed opera in the original style (countertenors, original instrumentation, etc), the performance does sound a bit florid and thick. But Beverly Sills shines brightly and this is the great selfless star we will all remember. Grady HarpWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 21, 2009
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