Cecilia Bartoli at Palau dela Musica Catalana - Barcelona - 22.04.2009

......I first listened to her years ago. It was Cenerentola. I always wanted to see her on stage and this moment came by chance. I was supposed to go to Barcelona on business and I found out I can stay more. So i started looking for cultural events, as I always do when I travel. When i saw that Cecilia Bartoli was having a recital at Palau my heart exploded. I had to go see her. Only one problem.. the show was sold out. I wrote an email to the ticket office and they said they can do nothing for me. After one more email the nice lady there told me that if there's something available she'll tell me. And she did that. Two days later. That's how I managed to get a ticket. A good seat, second floor, in the middle. For only 25 euros.
......Days passed slowly till the day of the show. April 22nd. This day eventually came. Before the show I met some great ladies, true fans of good music and especially fans of Rolando. Thank you Teresa, thank you all for your warm welcoming. It was a pleasure meeting you and excuse me for my not so good Spanish. I did my best. Next time it will be better.
......I entered the Palau de la Musica Catalana half an hour before the show. It's a great building. A true palace of the music. Only one disadvantage, in my opinion. The walls are made of stone. So, there's little or no acoustics. Lucky us that Mrs Bartoli has strong lungs. The difference in sound was obvious between row 17 at the second floor where I stayed and row 1 at the second floor where I got just before the encore.

Below there are some pictures I took when I collected the ticket, in the morning April 22nd.

Side view of the Palau de la Musica CatalanaThe other side of the Palau de la Musica Catalana, one hour before the show.
The balcony above the main entrace of the Palau de la Musica Catalana
The main entrance
And some details of the architecture

The first picture I took inside.
Well, not a very good photo. The lady looks great on the first page of the program. This picture reminded me of another great soprano. Anna. The photo on her Siempre Libera album. Just a thought.
Inside the Palau de la Musica Catalana. The ceiling is made of stained glass and the walls seem to be alive. See for yourselves.

Horses coming from the right wall.

And here she comes. Accompanied by the pianist, Sergio Ciomei. She's wearing a beatiful blue dress.

Before watching the photos, the setlist.

I - Gioacchino Rossini - La Regata Veneziana

II- Vincenzo Bellini - L'Abbandono, Il fervido desiderio, Vaga luna, La farfalletta

III - Vincenzo Bellini - Dolente immagine, Malinconia, ninfa gentile, Ma rendi pur contento - Gioacchino Rossini - Or che di fiori adorno

IV - L'Esule, Canzonetta spagnuola, La DanzaV

- Gaetano Donizetti - Il barceiolo, Amore e morte, La conocchia

- Gioacchino Rossini - Belta crudele

- Gaetano Donizetti - Me voglio fa na casa

VI - Gioacchino Rossini - Ariette a l'ancienne, L'Orpheline du Tyrol, Le grande coquette

VII - Pauline Viardot - Havanaise, Hai Lui

- Manuel del Populo Vicente Garcia - Yo que soy contrabandista

- Maria Malibran - Rataplan

And two ancores. One of them just impressed me to tears. Non ti scordar di me. But the version I heard was way better. You have to trust me here.

Thanking the audience at the end of first part.
Brava, brava!
The beginning of the second part of the recital. Now she's weating a gorgeous white dress.

After singing the first encore she asked the audience "Do you want me to sing more?"
"Are you sure?"
"You back there are sure too?"
The fast song made people stand up. She has such an energy that you can't remain seated.

Before the sound last encore I managed to get down to the first row of the second floor. The sound was better. So was the view. Again, brava! After she finished singing Non ti scordar di me the hall exploded.

Good bye, Signora! Thanks for a great evening!The Palau by night

Detail on the entrance column.

For those who might attend a show and would like to meet the artist, the backstage entrance is right near the box office. I like to see how the stars talk and act when they're not on stage. So I went there.

La Bartoli came after half an hour. A crowd of about 20-25 people was waiting. Everybody was anctious to meet her, to say what a great night they experienced. The pens and booklets were ready for her arrival.
She talked to everybody and the autographs were personalized.

Again, I kept the best for last. This is my dear memory. A picture and an autograph on my Maria CD. See you again in November, at the Barbican in London.

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  2. Brava Irina, mi è piaciuto molto conoscerti e aspetto che ritorni al più presto a Barcellona.

  3. Has conseguido que el Palau luzca más hermoso que nunca en tus fotos. Son geniales.

    ¡Felicidades y gracias!

    p.d. espero que la próxima vez que nos visites coincidamos más y podamos charlar. Te esperamos!

  4. Felicidades Irina, por este magnífico reportaje. Hasta pronto.