Smiling Down

January 2008:

On January 23, 2008 Andrew and Reachel had the pleasure of Richard and Becky’s company for an evening at the Opera. Although Andrew had regarded Opera as an expensive nap in the past, Reachel aspired to help him acquire a taste for the beauty of the original musical theatre. Alas, even with an iPod playlist stacked with Opera gems, and a magnificent performance by baritone, Donny Ray Albert, Andrew was counting down songs on the playbill ten minutes into the performance.

Reachel was devastated. If music is a condensed form of emotion, Reachel believes that opera is the purest, most divine distillation. Sentimental circumstances and transformations requiring chapters by a novelist can be elegantly expressed in a single arias, nay measures. The notes require no translation before penetrating raw, unadulterated into the heart. The rationale of the librettos is essentially optional. And an Opera is best consumed with eyes on the passion of the Diva or should one prefer closed, while one immerses themselves in the experience, imagining the audible poetry too beautiful for translation.

If you’re interested in trying one of life’s finest pleasure, Reachel recommends Verdi or Puccini performed by the unrivaled Diva: Maria Callas. Giulini said of her performances, "reality was onstage. What stood behind me, the audience, auditorium seemed artifice. Only that which transpired on stage was truth, life itself." Callas's voice wasn’t as perfect or as pure as the competition, but she used her own weaknesses to dramatic advantage which only intensified the performance. Enjoy.