Sunday, 15 April 2012

Catalani's Water Nymphs

Another reason we need to know Alfredo Catalani. This is The Dance of the Water Nymphs from  Catalani's opera Lorely (1890). Harps to lull you into romantic dreams, but almost immediately the strings rip it asunder Darting, nervous energy. These Lorelei are like fishes, beautiful but physically strong and agile. The music seems to flip and twist as a fish does when for  a moment it's glimpsed, leaping out of the water. Sounds of distant hunting horns : the Lorelei seem to listen and react. Alarm, urgency, and a melody which sounds deliberately sweet, as if the Lorelei are springing into job mode, combing their tresses to lure unwary men. A beautiful finale, shimmering like haze over water. This is conducted by Arturo Toscanini, who admired Catalani so much that he named his daughter Wally after Catalani's best known opera. Luckily she lived before the name took on its modern meaning.

Please see other posts on Catalani with useful links !!!! (click on label below)

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