Monday, January 7, 2013

Oh quante volte – I Capuleti e Montecchi

Oh! How many times,
How many I ask you
Crying to heaven
With the ardour of waiting for you,
My desire is a trick!
The rays of your countenance
Are for me, the brightness of the day.
The aura that blows round
Seems to be one of your sighs.

Katia Ricciarelli sings 'Oh quante volte' from Bellini's I Capuleti e I Montecchi.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Nemico della Patria - Andrea Chenier

An enemy of the State?!
It’s an old fable
That people are still blissfully swallowing.
Born in Constantinople? Foreigner!
Studied at Saint-Cyr? Soldier!                          
Traitor! Accomplice to Dumouriez!
And a poet? Corrupter of hearts
And mores!
I once lived joyfully
Without hatred or vengeance
Pure, innocent and strong.
I thought myself a giant
But I’m just a servant
Who’s changed masters.           
An obedient servant to violent passions!
Ah, worse yet! I kill and tremble,
And while I kill, I weep!
Me, a son of the Revolution,                             
The first to hear its cry
For the world, I united that cry to my own.
Have I now lost faith
In that dream of destiny?
Oh how my path
Shone with glory!
The heart’s conscience
Reawakening the people,
Gathering up the tears
Of the vanquished and suffering,
Making the world a Pantheon,
Changing men into gods;
And in one kiss,
In one kiss and one embrace
To love all mankind!

Juan Pons in Giordano's Andrea Chenier.

Met, 1996.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

O patria mia – Aïda

Radamès is coming here!          
What does he want to tell me?  I’m trembling!
Ah! If you’re coming to bring me, o cruel man,
The final farewell,
The deep whirlpools of the Nile
Will give me a grave and maybe peace,          
and maybe peace and oblivion.

Oh my country, I will never see you again!
Nevermore! Nevermore will I see you!
O blue skies, o sweet native breezes
Where my morning shone peacefully,

O green hills, o fragrant shores,
Oh my country, I will never see you again!
Nevermore! Nevermore will I see you!
O cool valleys, o this blessed refuge
That once gave me a promise of love,

Now that the dream of love has disappeared,
O my country, I will never see you again.         
O my country, I will never see you again.

Leyla Gencer in Verdi's Aida.

Verona, 1963.