Odious and Peculiar

Philology and esoterica: scribblings, ravings and mutterings.

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Forging the Sampo

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Thursday, July 29, 2004


Lovely; irreproachably fine voices; and I was heartily glad when it was over.

It's Handel. I've heard it before--some of it, in its entirety--in others of his works. Handel didn't mind stealing from himself.

I like Handel, but three hours of it left me worn. Agrippina was a powerfully good actress and singer. Ottone, a counter-tenor, received well-deserved accolades. Poppea was suitably round-heeled. But THREE HOURS. I needed a drink, which I had, and then I needed another one. And then a quick lie-down.

For some reason I have no trouble getting through Parsifal. Maybe because Wagner has some, y'know, variation. I mean, really, the words to any of those arias could be exchanged and no one would know it. Maybe not the one that goes "You well deserve this honor (how my heart rages)". But all the other ones. Yurgh.

So, it was still good. Well, except the second act. That could have been cut, without losing anything but some diverting T&A. Which is probably why they kept it. "It is quite dreadful to consider with what sad and futile perseverance...at one time censored matter...have been toiled through by misguided millions in quest of the authors' rumored indecency.... Besides, he does get in the way of indecency so very little for his trouble."

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