This little video of a woman singing Verdi is going viral. Viral for an opera video that is.
Fausta Truffa, the soprano in this gem, does not yield many search results. I thought that perhaps she was a singer from the golden age of opera voices.
I’m calling the 1950s and '60s the golden age of opera. I’m not sure that is true, but I will briefly make the case.
The '50s and '60s were the era when recordings began to sound like the real thing instead of a hazy facsimile. At the same time technology was not as dominant as it is now. The singers had been trained between the wars and the style of singing was what we might consider old-fashioned.
That we can’t find Fausta Truffa’s story is of no consequence. Much of her story is contained in her singing of this piece from Verdi’s Forza del destino.
One does not have clarity of voice — at any age — while there is misuse in the body. Of course, the body responds to our thoughts. Our thoughts are a separate issue. I have no idea where they come from.
Healthy thoughts create healthy bodies, which create a healthy voices. There are some exceptions. Pavarotti comes to mind as an unhealthy body that had a healthy voice.
In the case of Singora Truffa, I hear a woman whose voice can only come from a good place. Am I saying that bad singers are bad people? No, of course not. I am saying that a healthy voice comes from a healthy mind and body. They all go together.
So long as the mind or body are uncomfortable the voice will have issues. I’m not sure why this isn’t addressed more often in singing pedagogy. The emotional state of a singer is going to affect the voice for good or ill. Yet I don’t hear many voice teachers or singers talking about the importance of a healthy mental state.
Maybe they do and I just haven’t observed it. Or maybe it’s so obvious that it need not be said.
Whatever the case may be, Truffa’s singing is exquisite for any age. This is not the bar being lowered because she appears to be well into her eighth decade. The way she feathers the ends of her phrases is elegant and supremely musical.