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Sara Gartland is an emerging singer who brings an enormous talent and a delightful personality to the opera stage. Having sung lighter soprano roles such as Juliette in Gounod’s Romeo et Juliette and Violetta in Verdi’s La traviata, Gartland is now taking on the title role in Leoš Janáček’s dramatic opera Jenůfa.
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On 6 June, Jonathan Dove’s Flight touches down in Kensington,
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Anita Rachvelishvili recently performed the title role in Carmen broadcast by The Metropolitan Opera Live in HD. Here she drops by for a little chat with our Maria Nockin.
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"Although there are now more people on this planet than there have ever been before, there are fewer dramatic voices. Something is wrong with that equation. I thought there needs to be some sort of helping hand so that dramatic voices don’t fall through the cracks in the system as they advance through their various stages of development."
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18 Nov 2004
The Biting Kiss
"Pardon me, but your teeth are in my neck": Giambattista Marino, Claudio Monteverdi, and the bacio mordace Massimo Ossi Claudio Monteverdi's "Eccomi pronta ai baci" presents an odd pairing of a first-person female voice with a three-voice low male ensemble;...
"Pardon me, but your teeth are in my neck": Giambattista Marino, Claudio Monteverdi, and the bacio mordace
Claudio Monteverdi's "Eccomi pronta ai baci" presents an odd pairing of a first-person female voice with a three-voice low male ensemble; in addition, the text, by Giambattista Marino, deals with the subject of the "bacio mordace" [biting kiss], and the female speaker invites her lover to kiss her but warns him against biting her. He of course betrays her, and the poem closes with her outraged complaint and vow never to kiss him again. The combination of text, singing voices, and expressive qualities invoked in the setting suggests that Monteverdi went beyond the conceit of Marino's madrigal in exaggerating the comic and parodistic (in the non-musicological sense of the word) aspects of the situation. In this essay, I explore the background of the kiss imagery, focusing specifically on the "bacio mordace" as an expression of "lover's furor" in Classical and Renaissance sources. I then relate the particular conceit of Marino's poem to Emanuele Tesauro's analysis of the dynamics of literary comedy: the device of decettione [deception or reversal] as part of the ridicolo [comedy] and its attendant burle [pranks]. Finally, I offer a reading of Monteverdi's madrigal in terms of Tesauro's definitions, in which I argue that the setting interjects an extra level of interpretation between the poet and the audience. This musical "filter" introduces new ambiguity into the poem's already equivocal situation, expanding its comic aspects.
Journal of Musicology
Spring 2004, Vol. 21, No. 2, Pages 175-200
Posted online on November 15, 2004.
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