Friday, January 22, 2010

Opera gentleman

A big voice in classical radio is gone. He was 90. His name was George Jellinek. My friend Steven Carlson at Instant Encore alerted me to this today, to this loss. George Jellinek used to be in charge of WQXR in New York City and he also was known for his erudite interviews with singers. He is pictured above with his wife.

Here is a clip of him interviewing the singer Virginia Zeani.

As I told Steven, to hear their accents together is hilarious!

We are always seeing pictures of George Jellinek old but here is a picture of him younger.

George Jellinek seems like an educated man of the sort we do not often find now. He wrote a book, "The Road to Radio and 'The Vocal Hour.'" And in it he mentions that he took seven years of Latin, "an invaluable asset."

Who in the world takes seven years of Latin now?

I used to hear Jellinek sometimes on the Texaco Opera Quiz they used to run during intermissions in the Metropolitan Opera broadcasts.

I miss those square old voices on the radio.

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