Recondita Armonia

All posts tagged Recondita Armonia

It was with an intense feeling of anticipation that I embarked on the journey to Newcastle to see the first show of Alfie Boe’s UK Tour…and it’s safe to say that I was not disappointed!  Straight off, I’m going to say that although Sol3 Mio were great, I’m not going to mention them any further here – look out for further blogs.

Alfie, together with his band, started out with stripped down songs from Serenata – the way that Alfie has always wanted to play them.  Serenata Celeste was majestic and My Heart is Yours felt hugely emotional for both audience and Alfie.  Seamlessly moving into songs from La Passione (Parlami D’Amore Mariu), there was an audible sigh of anticipation from the audience when Alfie announced Caruso.  This turned out to be a humdinger of a number, especially when Alfie’s voice rose to a crescendo and the backdrop curtain fell to reveal the orchestra.  Very effective.

Musical theatre featured heavily on Alfie’s first two Decca albums and he returned to this repertoire last night.  Come What May, Wheels of a Dream and Being Alive were powerhouse performances and made an excellent intro to the Les Mis section and an outstanding rendition of Bring Him Home.  A standing ovation duly followed.  Leading into this, Richard Causon played a very effective Do You Hear the People Sing on accordion and got a fair portion of the audience singing along; this could have been encouraged more and perhaps will be in a bigger audience.

One of the most talked about parts of this tour was whether or not Alfie would sing any operatic arias – if you are a fan of his early albums you will be thrilled to find out that accompanied just by Richard Causon on piano, Alfie sang a medley of Recondita Armonia and Nessun Dorma which was simply outstanding.  Goosebumps time.  However, as wonderful as the sound was, the applause was slightly more muted than perhaps could have been expected due to the fact that we weren’t actually sure when Alfie had finished singing!  Recondita Armonia went straight into Nessun Dorma and so were half expecting that a third aria would follow.  A few of us were on the verge of standing up to applaud but weren’t sure and then of course the moment had gone.  Thanks Linda for sharing this:

At this point, I should probably mention that although Alfie’s stage patter was still there, there was much less talk as there was a whole lot of singing!

After a short break (at this point, it was most noticeable that it was the first show as there were a couple of lengthy pauses for set movements) Alfie and the band returned to the stage for Trust and Storyteller songs.  Bridge Over Troubled Water gave way to Trust and Keep Me in Your Heart...I confess to being a little hot and bothered over the “buttons on your blouse” moment… We then returned to where we started with more Serenata.  Chitarra Romana started us off and we then enjoyed Luna Malinconia, Mamma, Volare, Mambo Italiano and Buona Sera where the main performance ended.  We were encouraged to dance during this last part (only where our seats were) and Alfie had us all blowing kisses to him during Buona Sera, and yes, he did reciprocate.

The encore brought an acapella version of Danny Boy which showcased Alfie’s superb vocal abilities (and I don’t normally like this song) but I loved it last night.  The final song of the night was a fabulous Glory Glory Hallelujah from Trust – and Alfie sent us off in style.

Overall, all the fans I spoke to thought the show was absolutely amazing, Alfie at his best, something for everyone and quite possibly his best ever concert.  Writing this now, I am reliving it all over again and I definitely agree – Alfie was simply out of this world.  Having said that, it will be interesting to see how the show goes in Leeds on Friday when the teething difficulties with the staging etc. have been ironed out.

If you don’t have tickets, go and get them now – you won’t be disappointed!

I can’t believe you don’t have Serenata yet but if not, click on the image to order:

serenata

 

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Alfie Boe’s recent BBC Radio Ulster interview  was a gem!  The presenter started by playing Alfie’s version of Pure Imagination and then delighted Alfie by telling him Liverpool won 3-0 against Tottenham!  Then it was straight into the usual tour and album promo and great news, Serenata will feature at the Belfast Proms. And apparently, the ice bucket challenge was “cold” – yeah, we got that Alfie!

Classical fans will be thrilled to know that Alfie will also be singing “La Donna e Mobile” in Belfast! Wow, can’t wait to hear that.

Ahead of his appearance at Belfast Proms in the Park, it seems a good time to look back at Alfie’s previous Proms appearances. Indeed, Last Night of the Proms around the UK has been one of Alfie’s most regular gigs over the last few years; 13 September marks his fourth appearance in a row.

Last year, 2013, saw Alfie sing songs mainly taken from his Trust album, whilst in 2012, he performed some more traditional songs, including Chitarra Romana and You Are My Hearts Delight as well as Bring Him Home.   The year before saw an appearance in Dundee where the highlight was Recondita Armonia.

However, those are not Alfie’s only Proms appearances – he has been to Northern Ireland before (Carrickfergus in 2007) and Swansea in 2008, back in the days when he was still performing in opera.  Here he is with Rebecca Evans at Swansea, singing Brindisi from La Traviata:

Alfie’s new album, Serenata is released on 20 November  – just click on the image below

serenata

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The results are in and not surprisingly, Recondita Armonia came out on top with 23% of the vote.  I say not surprisingly, but it was a close run thing in the end as the second placed video, A Vuchella, received 21%.

Tied for third were Je Crois Entendre Encore and ENO’s Che Gelida Boheme and there was another tie for last place between Granada and You Are My Hearts Delight.

I must admit to being slightly surprised that Granada did not do better; this was the most recent video in contention and received the most blog views when it was published in March.  Maybe it didn’t place higher due to it being so recent and therefore, fresh in our minds.  Recondita Armonia is three years old now – absence making the heart grow stronger do you think?

Thank you to everyone who voted, here is the winner, Recondita Armonia, from Matt’s kitchen:

 

We’re half way through the week and time for an update on the Favourite Alfie Boe Video Poll – have you voted yet?  If  not, why not? Perhaps you need inspiration, so here are the contenders:

The poll will close on Saturday 12 April and all will be revealed; will it be your choice of winner?  Not if you don’t vote it won’t!

p>The results are in from the poll and those of you who voted for classical won’t be surprised that it won by a country mile.  So, the next question is, which video is our favourite?

In this poll, I have chosen my favourite videos for you to choose from – if you have a different choice, please send in a comment!

The poll will be open for a week and then the winning video will be revealed so GET VOTING!

To help you decide: