Thomas Hampson and Isabel Bayrakdarian
I think La Ci Darem La Mano has easily been the most memorable duet, or just song in general, that we’ve heard so far. As we discussed in class, the flowing melody is so catchy and even seductive, but my favorite part about it is how different actors have interpreted Don Giovanni’s part. Some sing it slower or faster, with more dramatic feeling or less emotion. Either way, I greatly enjoyed watching all the different versions in class, although some of them (like the French one) were quite strange.
Someone mentioned in class that the Don Giovanni in this clip was the best one we had seen – I thought the exact same thing! This guys does the part PERFECTLY!
I do not particularly like the way this duet is staged. It appears to be a more modern and sensual interpretation, which I find uncomfortably distracting to this particular piece. However, as a musical performance, these two voices compliment each other wonderfully, truly capturing the emotion embedded in the melody and expressing this emotion through musical dialogue.
This has been stuck in my head all weekend and this is how i interpret the scene. Hampson’s Giovanni seems so convincing—the facial expressions are gold!
I agree with all the aforementioned comments. His facial expressions are consistent with Don Giovanni’s dramatis persona-his “Cassa nova” nature, his charm, his almost exaggerated emotions- but at the same time I don’t like the modern set because it takes away from the original setting. The tempo is also slightly slower than most renditions I’ve heard, so I don’t like it that much. The vocals are fantastic though
Compared to the other Don Giovanni, this one does stand out in his facial expression. One thing interesting about this piece of work I’ve noticed is that it seems that there aren’t many excellent actresses…I hope to see a better rendition of Zerlina.
After watching this performance of “La Ci Darem La Mano”, I had mixed feelings. On the one hand, I felt that the voices of the performers blended nicely all throughout the piece and that they sang with enough emotion to make the scene believable. On the other hand, the acting itself was very…bizarre. Generally, operas have very dramatic acting, but this was just excessive and over done. I particularly did not like the scarf because it seemed like an unnecessary prop that was more of a distraction than anything since all she did was flip it all around her face, etc.
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