sábado, 2 de enero de 2010

Paul Robeson, Oh Isis y Osiris

From "The Odyssey of Paul Robeson". This is from the liner notes, by Paul Robeson, Jr.:
"Another highlight...is the stirring {O' Isis and Osiris} from Mozart's 'The Magic Flute', one of my father's favorite songs, which he rarely performed during the latter part of his career. Perhaps his recollection of a time almost 20 years earlier, when he had sung it in unusual circumstances, prompted him to sing it for posterity. In 1937, Paul was in Cairo, Egypt, on location acting in the film 'Jericho'. Henry Wilcoxon, a co-star in the film, asked Paul to join him on a visit to the Great Pyramid of Gizeh. Their guide took them to the Pharoah's Chamber at the geometric center of the pyramid, where they all noticed an unusual echo. Wilcoxon suggested that Paul sing a chord, and when Paul complied, the echo sounded like it had come from a huge organ. As the reverberations finally died out, Paul, without hesitation, stepped to the center of the chamber and sang {O' Isis and Osiris}. The entire chamber vibrated like an enormous high-fidelity speaker, producing an unforgettable sound of unbearably majestic beauty. An African-American singer had made a connection with African antiquity via the music of the greatest European composer."

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