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Description Contrary to popular cliché, on Opera-L it ain't *begun* until the lady sings. This is an erudite group, both genteel and passionate. Opinions run strong here. Not only do participants know what they like but they know why. While not all posters are serious musicians or musical scholars, most are well versed in music and able to back up opinions with technical details. The entire breadth and depth of the opera world is up for discussion. A report on a performance of one opera may sit beside a post dissecting a libretticist's interpretation of a character in another. Composition and vocal virtuosity are discussed in detail, but so is staging, acting, and plot line. Participants keep each other abreast of upcoming events worthy of note, and it's common to see a post announcing an upcoming performance, complete with the entire cast. Reviews--which in other venues are too often a means of showing off or riding hobby horses--maintain a healthy and spirited feeling of sharing an experience with friends. Participants are as likely to be discussing a contemporary work as they are a classic, and recordings as much as live performances. One topic frequently arising out of discussion of older recordings is how the accepted styles of vocal performance have changed since recording first preserved the work of opera's biggest stars. It says something positive about the group that they are usually enable to express a strong distaste for some earlier stylings and still come across without sounding dismissive. Opera-L is one of the older and more established mailing lists (it was started in 1990) and has 80+ messages a day. -E.L.

Subject: music

Geography: global

Format: mailing list

Language: English

Cost: no cost

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