music to start monday

i always have a soft spot for this duet, courtesy of the generous NPO Radio 4 youtube channel, much much love what they’re sharing ❤ . Also check out the ratio of female musicians in the orchestra!

Paula Murrihy, mezzosopraan, King Solomon
Dominique Labelle, Sopraan, Queen (but she’s not the Queen of Sheba!)

Edit: 2 links I wanted to post, which are now finally up:
1. Vivica Genaux sings Dido with C.Rousset conducting, from France Musique, link.
2. Blog post from the Opera house in Hamburg, of Anna Caterina Antonacci’s debut in the role Iphigénie (I can’t believe she hasn’t sung there until now!). I reaaaaaly love the photo from the blog post!

radio alert

Edit: Here is the radio broadcast of the Mozart Mass in C-minor for re-listening.

Today, 16.Sep.2016, at 1900h GMT, Laurence Equilbey conducting her orchestra and chorus, with soloist Sandrine Piau, Renata Pokupic, and other, with a Mozart program, link from ARTE here or from worldconcerthall here.

Tomorrow, 17.Sep.2016, at 1900h GMT, Natalie Stutzmann conducting the Sao Paolo symphonie orchestra and ? chorus, with soloist Emoke Barath and Ekaterina Siurina and others, Mozart Mass in C minor. link here or here at the world concert hall.

Edit: new interview from Sao Paolo, N.Stutzmann discusses her work with the Orchestra, Mozart Mass, etc. AND!! E.Siurina’s voice is soooooo much more agreeable with my ears (and her phrasing is much better in my opinion) to the version I heard in Bergen. Very much looking forward!

More later if I find things in the schedule from the worldconcerthall site.

vintage garefrekes

I am a bit late to this news, blame it on moving/ working/ traveling schedules. This past May Kerstin Garefrekes retired from soccer. But even before that, after the 2011 world cup, she retired from the German national team and thus I have also been trailing off following the team closely. There are a few particular players I really enjoy watching, one is Kerstin Garefrekes, and the others are Homare Sawa, Aya Miyama, and Shinobu Ohno. The last three are midfielders of the Japanese team during the 2011 world cup. They are admired greatly (by me) for their field visions and skilled passing. I once compiled a video of all their incredible “drop” passes but decided not to upload for fear of copyright issues.

© AP / Rick Bowmer

“the” goal. USA versus Germany, women world cup 2003. © AP / Rick Bowmer

With Garefrekes, I have always loved watching her “runs” and passing from the wings. Ok, I don’t know the game very well in term of actual playing (hey, it could have been different if I got some training when little🙂 ), but one of the key things is knowing “where” and “when” to run / make cuts to be open and seeing ahead of time where you can pass / cut the angles to get the ball behind the defenders. And i always love players running down the side and managing curls into the penalty area (that’s how England scored two goals in the 1996 world cup semifinal! pass it out to the wing, run in, pass in, headers, GOAAAL!!) . In any case, for those who did not follow, Kerstin Garefrekes was also involved in THE game that got me completely addicted to women soccer: the 2003 World Cup semifinal between Germany and USA. And, as a reward of being patiently waiting, here it is in full, vintage Garefrekes in one of _the_ best games in women soccer! Intense action starting at 14m30s , when, guess who, scored for Germany. This is also a game of SPECTACULAR goal protection from the German keeper Silk Rottenberg (and a young Nadine Angerer cheering on the side). INCREDIBLE saves after saves. The entire match after minute 14m30s was played in the German half! And she single-handedly preserved the score for Germany until minute 91…

Yes, that evening i switched on, at the time, a 13-in TV someone gave, and remained glued to the screen biting nails (i was cheering for Germany, long story, but have always been) until the last minute. The skill level was really amazing to watch.. Back then, Garefrekes, at some very tender young age, was on the bench in the opening rounds but by the most important semifinal match she was already in the starting line-up. In addition to her opening goal, if continue to follow the match, you will see how she kept running up the wings, crossing into the center, and making really good passes that caused all kinds of troubles for the Americans. I’m assuming not too many of those announcers knew who she was and only starting recognizing her influence as the match unfolded. Also seen are Abby Wambach and Birgit Prinz (scratch that, i just saw Prinz playing in the 1995 game! how old is she?!) at tender young age, as well as the earlier very skillful generation of German and American players.

Silke Rottenberg making a save, USA vs Germany, semifinal women world cup 2003. © Donald Miralle

Silke Rottenberg making a save, USA vs Germany, semifinal women world cup 2003. © Donald Miralle

Two years ago, before retiring, she also took a 3 months “break” to play in the US!! There is an interview from Deutschland to Germantown, a perfect timing for Kerstin Garefrekes where she explained the main difference between how the game is played here in the US versus in Germany. I would say it is also a primary reason I don’t really watch the USA team (and the same reason you heard a certain goalie calling other team “a bunch of cowards” for having strategies): that they rely a lot on brute force rather than on technical skills. That is the filtering system aims to reward the “fastest” and “tallest”, in such a way that the idea is primarily to “launch” the ball up as far as possible and relying on your athletic players to outrun/outmuscle the other team’s players for the ball. Of course, it’s a good strategy if you play a smaller/slower team (an asian team! hey, we’re pretty smaller statistically! i think! there’s a quote somewhere i read the average female Vietnamese height and weight is 1,55m and 43kg!) . Thus in this brute-force way there is less chances for smaller / less fast players.

Ariane Hingst as the last line of defense, USA vs Germany, semifinal WWC 2003. © unknown

Ariane Hingst as the last line of defense, USA vs Germany, semifinal WWC 2003. © unknown

That is fine, i guess. However, if your opponents are also as fast and as tall as you are, e.g., the Swedish team, then this out-running out-muscling tactic can only go so far. And at this point skillful passing would be required to maintain possession and organize some sort of attacks. And I guess after seeing Japan in 2011, I have been slacking off because their style of play is not being rewarded as much and I got tired of seeing balls hurling up and down with sprinting/wrestling in unorganized fashions (this is also true for the current German team, or Swedish). But yes, before all of that, there was this one game that started it all. Note the “strategy” Germany adopted back in 2003 to face a VERY skillful USA team is quite similar to the tactic Sweden took this past Olympics or in the world cup 2011.

music for the night

Nathalie Stutzmann conducting Orfeo55 and duetting with Emőke Baráth, all Händel i believe, GORGEOUS music!! this program was live 25.Aug.2016 (today/yesterday) and now available for re-viewing. Click on the photo or here for the loooovely gif, then go directly to culturebox via this link.

(ps- I really like E.Baráth’s voice, it’s on the warm side, she also sang the high-mezzo part of Mozart mass in c-minor.

kasarova radio alert

edit: here’s the unedited version:

today, Sun 31/Jul/2016, 1700GMT , 1900CET, 1300EST , Vesselina is singing in duet with Ricarda Merbeth, here’s the program and link from worldconcerthall. Here’s the direct link at BRKlassik, though i don’t see the “play” button anywhere… (is it my flash block? but i do see the option for “live” so I’m guessing you can click there once it’s time.) I think one of the links on here will work directly from an mp3 player, though i’m not sure if “1” or “2” is what we need..


(oh, now that i see this, it was from an event on 17/jul/2016). She’s singing Mozart!!! and some Strauss, though surprisingly nothing for the role Der Komponist which she’s slated to sing in Japan this October.

I’ll be deeeep in my sleep, and might just barely have 1 eye open to manage the capturing machine… but am quite looking forward! I think she also has enough fans on the fb fansite who hopefully will capture in case my alarm fails… (oh, i know, let me go bribe Stray😉 )

photos for the day


on our way south, we spotted some sea ice scatterring, likely blown over from the Siberian coast. greetings from 67.8°N. This photo was taken at 2.30 local time with the sun still going down. here it is at 3.30am: (where it sat and came back up at 3.45am. photos taken on 13/july morning)


greetings from the Chukchi Sea


Greetings from latitude 68.5N, where in 1.5hr the sun will come to just above the horizon and stays for ~15min before rising again🙂 . we are currently hiding just at the tip of Cape Lisburne for the bad weather to zoom by (has been here since 11 hours ago) before resuming our cruise. Warm greetings with a photo of the Diomedes from 2 nights ago.  We should see them again in a few days.