One of the toughest way to sing is to learn how to sing Opera, the strength and passion that the voice manages to have is almost unbelievable. There are specific ways to train the voice and be able to sing with such powerful sound.

However one of the most important things to understand about opera singers is that they don’t use microphones, so the way that the body has to work as an instrument needs to be as refined and polished as it can be, with of course, lots of care and training

Luciano Pavarotti

Luciano Pavarotti was one of the greatest and most famous opera singers to date, and while he is from the world of opera, he has been known to sing along with other artists like Elton John and Bono.

He was born in 1935 in Northern Italy, and while he was growing up, his big dream was far from music, he wanted to be a profesional football player as a goalkeeper, however, he eventually turned his attention towards music, and began his studies at the age of 19.

Music has an incredible value. Because I remember, myself, the Second World War. I was ten when the war finished, and the first thing everybody wanted was to have light – because during the war we cannot have light in the night. And secondly, to gather round the fire in the open air and to sing and play. Stupid things, but together. And singing and singing and singing. I think that music, art, is the bread of the soul. So we would like to participate to give nutrition to the soul.

Today Opera is not one of the most popular genres of music in the world, however it does retain a level of prestige and recognition due to its history and the technical prowess it requires. Pavarotti said about the music industry today that:

They buy records, but what they want is song and they want songs written today. If you make a record of songs of today you will sell more than if you record antique songs.

I am not pessimistic. I am realistic. It is an attitude of the audience. Audiences like novelty – they like new operas, they like new singers, they like everything new. [By new he doesn’t mean contemporary, but rather music that he and other popular classical artists haven’t done before.] I have almost recorded everything in opera that I can. One thing I am going to do which I have neglected recently is recitals with piano. It’s the most difficult thing of all because it is yourself up there, alone with the pianist.

Interview from gramophone.com

There are still however, many people interested in becoming opera singers, and the first step to get into opera is to know about the world of opera, on this note, Pavarotti has some recommendations for those who want to start the journey:

They always should go for a good drama. For example, Puccini is a good way to meet – ToscaBohème. Comic opera like Elixir Of Love [by Donizetti] is fantastic, Barber Of Seville [Rossini]. And then, little by little, they should go to Verdi, who is more important than all the other composers … For me, I like Mozart and Beethoven in the classic, I like Verdi in the operatic. If I have to choose one composer I will be a traitor of Italy because I will choose Mozart, because he has done classic and opera. In the way he has written, I think, he is the greatest genius of all.

Interview from Pauldunoyer.com

Why Should You Learn Opera Singing

For starters it’s not for everybody, meaning it’s not easy to get into, it takes a lot more time to adjust than regular singing (meaning, to sing with the help of microphones or any other genre). There is an amount of practice and devotion that will be needed in order to achieve a good level of understanding of what opera is. However this is an art that seems almost superhuman to most singers, and the tradition and history behind it is long and rich.

Opera can eventually find its way back to the spotlight, and with how musical genres are experimenting today, it just may be around the corner.

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Famous German Composer Felix Mendelssohn


My journey of discovery into the extraordinary relationship that the famous German composer Felix Mendelssohn enjoyed with Queen Victoria and Prince Albert began back in 2009. Whilst researching his visit to North Wales, as outlined in my previous article (“Mendelssohn: Part 1 – In North Wales”), I discovered that he had made several visits to Buckingham Palace in London where he and the royals struck up a close friendship based on their mutual love of music and the arts.

Queen Victoria and Prince Albert as Musicians

Queen Victoria (1819-1901) and Prince Albert (1819-1861) were both very accomplished pianists and singers. Prince Albert was also a keen composer from an early age, writing many songs and choral pieces. It was their shared love of music that helped them form an attraction to each other. Victoria noted Albert’s skill at the piano when they first met in 1836. The day after the Queen’s proposal of marriage to Albert, she wrote, “…he sang to me some of his own compositions, which are beautiful, & he has a very fine voice. I also sang for him.” They enjoyed playing piano duets together and accompanying as the other sang, always taking their sheet music with them wherever they would travel. They were both keen followers of theatre and opera, Queen Victoria seeing up to 50 performances per year! Whilst in London as a youngster she would attend two or three performances in the West End each week!

Enter Mendelssohn: 14th and 15th of June, 1842

Prince Albert was an enthusiastic follower of Mendelssohn’s music and it was he who introduced the Queen to Felix’s works for piano and voice. The composer first met just the Prince on the morning of the 14th of June 1842 when he hand delivered a letter from Albert’s cousin, the King of Prussia (Frederick William IV). He was then invited to Buckingham Palace the following evening to meet the Queen. According to an account by Kupferberg, the royals were feeling quite nervous about meeting their musical hero; “for all their exalted station, [they] were quite fluttery!” Apparently, Mendelssohn felt the same way. [···]

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