Tuesday, September 25, 2007

From Carmina Burana, #12, Olim Lacus Colueram

Once I dwelt in the lakes;
once I was a beautiful swan
O miserable me!
Now I am black
and roasted to a turn!

The cook turns me on the spit,
the fire roasts me through
and I am prepared for the feast

Now in a serving dish I lie
And can no longer fly
Gnashing teeth confront me

As far as I know, this is the highest placed solo for tenor voice in classical literature. The pained mewling of the tenor much convey's the swan's discomfort.

In the 1930s, German composer Carl Orff set these 13th century texts to music, and "O, Fortuna!" is the one you are most likely somewhat familiar with. Its melody was a heavy influence in the theme and variations of the superb soundtrack of Last of The Mohicans. Great stuff.

Here's a bizarre but wonderful video of this aria I found. Several videos I saw featured countertenors(male soprano), which doesn't sound appropriate, in my opinion. This guy is more like a classical Italian tenor, and his technique is superb.


Christina RN LMT said...

O, Fortuna!

Or, as my ex-husband always said when he heard my cd, "the Ozzy song!"

Ozzy Osbourne used O, Fortuna to open many of his shows, and you hear it on his live album.


Christina RN LMT said...

Wow, definitely a freaky video!

I think the dude who sings it on my cd has a "whinier" voice, if that makes sense.

I just think the idea of a roasted bird singing is so amusing, I love it!

Christina RN LMT said...

Damn, comment number three!

I keep forgetting things...
must be getting old.

Anyway, I'd definitely love to sing with you, though I've had no formal training, so you're miles ahead of me!

I did have to audition to join the Mastersingers, so I guess I'm not half-bad! ;)

And that was extremely nerve-wracking, let me tell you.

Anonymous said...

I loved it! Great singing and a good chuckle at the end!

Lin said...

Drats, how'd I miss this post, I wonder? Now I am going to have to wait until tomorrow to play it since Mark has already gone to bed and I can't crank up the speakers. Sigh.