Saturday, 3 November 2012

For one night only....

Not really, but it was a good title.

I had a few requests yesterday started by lovely Ilona to show a video of me singing some opera. OK, so I am not naturally a show off (which is strange considering the job I am in), so I thought about this for a while and then in the end thought, what the hell, if people don't like it, too bad. I don't have a video that I am prepared to share, but I do have a soundtrack.
Normally I would make 1000 excuses as to why this or that top note wasn't quite right, or why I don't like this bit, or why my Italian sucked, but I will refrain on this occasion.
I will however apologise for the honky tonk, wild west quality of the piano, it was one of those concerts where we turned up and having been promised a decent piano, found that it was truly dreadful, nothing you can do.

Anyway, enough excuses, here it is.

This is me and Catriona Clark Soprano singing the very romantic duet from Pagliacci by Leoncavallo.  I've done this role twice, but this was just a concert performance a couple of years ago. Catriona has been my onstage wife in lots of productions of various operas and has become a very close friend, so it is nice to sing something so lovely with her.

The characters, Silvio and Nedda are very much in love and he is trying to persuade her to leave her husband and run away with him and she begs him not to tempt her. After an outburst of anger in which he accuses her of not really loving him, he sings a a quiet aria (about 3.45 minutes  into the clip) telling her how she has changed his life and awoken love in him. She relents and they sing of their love, planning to run away together later that night.

As is the way in opera of course, things don't run quite to plan and at the end the husband finds out and stabs them both to death in the last minute of the opera. Not exactly a barrel of laughs in the end.


  1. In the past, when we used to have money, we used to go to the Theatre Royal in Plymouth. I love Opera and it affects the audience in the strangest of ways. It is the most beautiful art form. It's the biggest thing I miss about having no spare cash. Thanks for this xxxxxxxxx

  2. Really loved this and thanks for the back story if but tragic.

  3. Wonderful Dan, thank you so much for posting this. I listened to it three times while I flitted around the net, it's so relaxing, you and the young lady sing beautifully. If you make a separate page with the link under your header, you can store it there so it won't get lost in the main blog. It would be easy to find when I want to listen again.

    You have got the best of both worlds Dan, doing a job you enjoy, and a lovely place to come back to. Can't be any better. Well done you for knowing what you want in life.

  4. I`m not a great fan of operas, but you do have a great voice!

  5. *sigh* Hubby and I both REALLY enjoyed that.THANK YOU!
    Like Froogs we used to visit the opera frequently (we had season tickets for Scottish Opera),but now ticket prices and the distance to venues makes it impossible for us.
    Our friends'son was training to be an opera singer,he helped us move and sang arias all day...wonderful.
    Thanks again.
    Jane x (and Chris)

  6. Wow, Dan, what a wonderful performance!! Thoroughly enjoyed it, thank you for sharing it with us.

  7. Thank you for sharing that with us Dan x

  8. Thankyou Dan, I too am an opera fan, tho its many years since I went to a performance, that was in Leeds.
    In the Scottish Lighthouse Museum there is a new opera being performed this afternoon and evening, but they are all squashing in the cafe and then one of the keepers cottages, so I do worry about the accoustics!
    Loved hearing you and your friend. In comfort!

  9. Lovely Dan - I hope you won't stop using your voice ! I was at a performance with our local symphony orchestra way down here last night and Ravil Atlas sang for us - a beautiful voice and he now lives here, sharing his skills with others so that more can learn how to sing.
    I am sure you can do that too.

  10. Beautiful Dan...there is something very special about opera. You have a fabulous voice and this recording touched me in the heart. Thank you so much for sharing it with us and I hope and pray that we may hear more from you. Amazing x x x x

  11. Absolutley wonderful - thank you for sharing.

  12. Bravo! Lovely. It's not a work I am familiar with (think more Mozart) but it was lovely to hear you sing. I'm a relatively new convert to opera but love it! And I'm delighted to say that my new opera buddies are my daughter and daughter in law, which is nothing short of a miracle.

    My daughter is taking me to the ballet later this month for a birthday treat, this again is something new and we would not have considered this 5 years ago. Nutcracker here I come!

  13. In my former life I played French Horn professionally, and I take every opportunity I can to visit the Opera; which these days is sadly about once a year - so thank you, thank you, thank you for this beautiful treat.

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  15. Recently discovered your blog and have read it from start to finish. Love it. Can't wait for next installment!!

    1. now why can't I get this kind of comment!

  16. How wonderful.. I came late to the party and did not hear this until Sunday night... I actually worked for an opera company for 8 years ... what a treat to hear this!