Adrift on the high Cs …
I’ve just thought of a category to add to my recent post for That Was My Year That Was, (2016) namely: The most beguiling performance of the year.
Two contenders stood out – Eleanor Tomlinson (Demelza in the TV series Poldark, see #TeamDemelza in posts passim) and an Irish soprano, Anna Devin, who was in Scottish Opera’s production of The Marriage of Figaro in which she played Susanna.
It was a close run thing, but Devin won. I’m by no means an opera buff, but I was completely beguiled by her performance and thought that she stole the show. Not just her singing, but her acting too. However, despite that and the critical praise of her “vivid sense of bel canto style” and “musico-dramatic intelligence” (which I think means ‘acting’) even she couldn’t relieve the tedium of the last 20 minutes of the opera – too long, Mozart, just too long!
It took a lot to put Tomlinson’s portrayal of Demelza into second place, but Devin managed it if only because her performance was live and the twinkle in her eye was enchanting! She can certainly belt them out as well. Anyway, this is for her …
I was enthralled by a singer called Anna;
Ms Devin, that is, and I canna
Forget her recital,
‘Bel canto’ and vital,
As she beguiled in the rôle of Susanna!
I’ve always liked the term bel canto ever since Harry Secombe disparaged his own singing ability as “more can belto than bel canto“. Meantime, I’d have had a better version of the limerick if only there was an appropriate rhyme with bel canto. You can’t win ’em all 🙁