Tuesday, December 29, 2020

TRY Channel Sneaks In An Opera Reference - For Better Or Worse

The TRY Channel on YouTube feature comedians from Ireland, well, trying things. In this most recent holiday edition, they plow through advent calendar drink boxes (beer, gin, whisky) and there is one funny moment at the 18:25 mark if you need a laugh. Watch more of their videos here: https://www.youtube.com/c/TheTRYChannel/videos. 

Monday, December 28, 2020

Bulgari "Never Too Much" With the Help of Verdi Force

Presenting MAI TROPPO: a celebration of the joyful exuberance of Bulgari and Rome. The new MAI TROPPO (Never Too Much) Bulgari advertising campaign, is an ode to life, joy and happiness. Deeply rooted in a Roman flamboyant exuberance, Bulgari invites to enthusiastically enjoy every single moment, here and now. Starring super model Lily Aldridge, British actress & singer Naomi Scott, American actress Zendaya. Directed by Johan Renck. The ad uses music from the Overture of Verdi's La Forza del Destino. Watch the full ad, as well as excerpts from the opera, after the jump.

WW84 Confusingly Uses Mozart For Emotional Affect

Remember coloratura soprano Christine Johnston? Well, she's resurfaced in the second full-length feature Wonder Woman film titled WW84. Unfortunately it's not flattering for anyone. For some reason the producers decided to use the aria "Voi che sapete" from Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro in what is supposed to be a fantastical scene of discovery as Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) sees the technology in the world of 1984 that he's been thrust into after being resurrected from 1918. Much of this film reads as a cheesy B-movie from the '80s, but this was a real lost opportunity. In the context of the opera, the character of Cherubino is Count Almaviva's page and a teenage boy who is girl-crazy. In opera this is known as "pants role" and sung often times in modern day by a mezzo-soprano. For this aria, we find out that the Count is tired of Cherubino's philandering with women so he's sending him off to army duty in Seville. Cherubino sings to Countess Almaviva and the servant Susanna about how much love he has to give. Hijinks ensue as any good as any plans that Beaumarchais created in his play La Folle Journée, ou Le Mariage de Figaro on which Da Ponte based his libretto. The opera premiered in 1786, so maybe there is supposed to be some cleverness about the '80s? The film score was hammered out by Hollywood veteran Hans Zimmer so maybe this was his idea? At any rate, the audience has to endure a pedantically sung piece that has no place in this movie. You can watch the film on HBOMax: https://www.hbomax.com/wonder-woman-1984. After the jump is a performance of "Voi che sapete" by Frederica von Stade.

Rapper Drake Installs MET Chandelier in $100 Million Mansion

Canadian rapper Drake has finally has revealed his $100 million mansion in Toronto and it is a showstopper. Coming in at just 5,000 square feet less than the White House, this home is filled the finest craftsmanship. So why just get any light fixture when you can get a replica of one that is in the Metropolitan Opera? His interior designer, Ferris Rafauli, turned to the Viennese family company J.&L. Lobmeyr that created the original starburst chandeliers that hang in the MET back in 1963. "Founded in 1823 with its head office on Kärntner Strasse in Vienna city center, manufactures chandeliers in all shapes and styles as well as high-quality crystal glass, according to designs ranging from Josef Hoffmann to Helmut Lang. The company used to supply the Imperial Palace, Schönbrunn Palace, the Bavarian royal palaces, and numerous European dynasties." You can see pictures of the interiors by clicking here. Watch a video of the chandelier installation and more of the home's interiors after the jump.