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The Grove Book of Opera Singers Hardcover – 23 Oct 2008


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 640 pages
  • Publisher: OUP USA (23 Oct 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195337654
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195337655
  • Product Dimensions: 23.6 x 4.1 x 16.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 569,083 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

Comment and opinion enliven the entries, the print is clear and the illustrations finely reproduced... An inexhaustible mine of information, it is also an engrossingly good read. (John Steane, Gramophone)

About the Author

An active scholar, Laura Macy has published articles and presented papers on the Italian madrigal and Women in music. She has given public lectures and radio presentations on the madrigal, female composers and opera.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mr P Graham on 19 Sep 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is good as far as it goes but the omissions are very significant and I have spotted one error of fact so far. Overall it is a useful addition to my music library but a more comprehensive work is called for. About 50% of the singers who I look up do not have an entry.
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18 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Gian Paolo Nardoianni on 3 Nov 2008
Format: Hardcover
The book, though commendable, fails to put opera singers in their true historical perspective, dwelling unduly upon many singers who are mere nonentities. A few truly historic singers, on the contrary, are unfairly made short work of. Giacomo Lauri-Volpi is a case in point: only 27 lines (taken almost verbatim -and without updating- from the Rosenthal & Warrack's Concise Oxford Dictionary of Opera) are the stingy alms given to that colossus of singing, whose career spanned almost sixty years: the reader who wants to know the truth about Lauri-Volpi's role in operatic history, has to resort to the "Guide de l'opéra" ( French edition of the Rosental & Warrack's reference, up-to-dated and enhanced by R.Mancini and J.J.Rouveroux).
Pasquale Amato and Carlo Galeffi -those Matterhorns among baritones- have to content themselves, respectively, with 30 and 26 lines,: while it takes no less than 45 to immortalize Roberto Alagna's life and career. Tito Gobbi (a superlative actor but an indifferent vocalist) scores an amazing 39; the unparalleled Titta Ruffo, "the lion", only 41: and Gobbi, for all his artistry, couldn't hold a candle to Titta Ruffo.
On a closer examination of the dictionary, I detected other flaws. First of all, the writers of some entries cite as cross reference a controversial two-volume work which contains provocative evaluations of singers of the past.
In addition to the above mentioned shortcomings, the book commits many unforgivable sins of omission: outstanding singers as Francesco Marconi, Giuseppe Kaschmann, Antonio Magini Coletti, Giuseppe Danise, Domenico Viglione Borghese are conspicuous by their absence.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Jean Sanpeur on 7 April 2009
Format: Hardcover
What can one think of a dictionary in which one can see some entries on singers like Robin Leggate,François Le Roux or Jean-Philippe Lafont and nothing on Xavier Depraz or Andrée Esposito,two French singers who have sung many premieres. And worse again, nothing on such an important singer as Mariella Devia !
Answer : not serious.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Melvyn Elphee on 28 Feb 2013
Format: Hardcover
Well, no. Callas is here. So is Souliotis. But the singer who has most often and deservedly been compared to Callas today - Anna Caterina Antonacci - is unforgivably and astoundingly omitted. I even checked the page numbers to be sure it was not an error in my copy. Such a truly outstanding omission begs many questions about what is included and necessarily detracts from the book's authority. A revised edition is urgently required to protect the reputations of Grove, Oxford, Macy and, above all, Antonacci.
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4 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. M. M. Schueler on 29 April 2009
Format: Hardcover
A well sourced and well written book. I have this book to hand and find it extremely useful. It is also up to date with the latest batch of new singers - something often lacking in similar books. As a reference book it is full of details - certainly enough to please the amateur critic!!!
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