Saturday Morning Cartoons: Wabbits and Wagner

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Of course, it wouldn't be Wagner Week without mentioning the 1957 Warner Brothers classic "What's Opera Doc?" On air we'll play the overture and Venusberg music from Wagner’s Tannhauser, which is featured in this masterpiece of animated Wagnerian music drama starring Bugs Bunny and Elmer Fudd.

In the full cartoon, there’s also music from The Flying Dutchman, Rienzi, Siegfried, and perhaps most famously, Elmer Fudd singing "Kill the Wabbit" to the tune of "Ride of the Valkyries," from Die Walkure.

Tonight at 9 pm, don't miss Movies on the Radio, when David Garland presents the full cartoon soundtrack from the album "Bugs Bunny on Broadway," in which the original cartoon voices are accompanied by a symphony orchestra.

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Kenneth Bennett Lane, Lake Hiawatha, NJ from Richard Wagner Music Drama Instutute, Boonton, NJ

The troubles that tear asunder the prospect of REAL "echt" WAGNERIAN PERFORMANCES are primarily based on the total lack of singers with squillo, ping, ringing "juicy', not dry secco , delivery, WAGNERIAN BARKING rather than legato full-throated singing, strained, forced and flat singing, unsupported, undersized and underpowered singing, WITHOUT impressive carrying power and with throaty or nasal ugly voice production. Today's news deals with deficits and declining support for the arts. Tandem to this predicament for the talented is the perception that the current situation will continue for a long time to come. Speaking specifically how this precludes the motivation for young operatic singers who must early on choosing their life's work, many have turned to Broadway or the business world. Nowadays Broadway musicals are out for show-stopping sensationalism with laser distractions, monster sets, acrobatic feats and space age technical projections and featuring dancing over singing. So, for the real thing opera singer, Broadway musicals, outside of Phantom of the Opera and an occasional Les Miserables there is little prospect of a sustainable career . The Wagner oeuvre has suffered the most. Husky physiques, witness the iconic John McCormack, do not offer similar size singing voices in power or stamina. Heroic voices like Melchior, Tamagno, Ruffo and the mature Caruso are nowhere on today's world class stages. Instead we suffer to hear miniscule, non-charismatic, non-distinctively memor able singing voices essaying roles far beyond their underpowered, thin not orotund, singing potentialities. I am a Wagnerian heldentenor, an opera composer [SHAKESPEARE and THE POLITICAL SHAKESPEARE] and director of The Richard Wagner Music Drama Institute, where all the Wagner and all the Shakespeare roles are taught as well as vocal technque for singing and declamation. www.WagnerOpera.com

Aug. 26 2013 06:08 PM

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