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Thread: Opera on CD

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    Senior Member sospiro's Avatar
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    Default Opera on CD

    Lucia di Lammermoor

    I've got these



    was the first version I ever heard. I love it. Caballé is sparkling & Carreras at his best as Edgardo. His "Tu che a Dio spiegasti l'ali" always has me reaching for my hanky. 5/5



    I got this one in May & it was my first Callas recording. It's in mono but for me that makes the sound more natural somehow (can't explain it very well). I think it's fantastic - Di Stefano, Callas & Gobbi all brilliant. My one complaint is that they miss out the duets with Lucia & Raimondo starting with "Di tua speranza l'ultimo raggio tramontò!" and they miss out the Wolf's Crag scene. 4/5



    I got this as it does include the omitted scenes (as above) & because it's supposed to be the benchmark.

    Milnes is fabulous, Pavarotti didn't compare favourably with di Stefano or Carreras and Sutherland can only sing in vowels. Maybe seeing her live she warranted 'La Stupenda' but not on studio recording. 2/5
    Ann

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    Senior Member jhar26's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sospiro View Post
    Sutherland can only sing in vowels.
    I agree. But on the basis of this incredible album alone she deserves her place among the all time greats. It has the best coloratura singing I've ever heard in my life. La Stupenda indeed. The problem you mention got worse as she got older. At the time when this was recorded (1960) it was less of an issue.

    Martha doesn't signal when the orchestra comes in, she's just pursing her lips..

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    Senior Member sospiro's Avatar
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    OK advice time

    I'm flying to Milan tomorrow & will have a three hour wait at the airport & then a two hour flight.

    To pass the time I like to listen to an opera & read the libretto.

    Should I take libretti of ones I know & love or of ones I've not heard yet (& may not like)?
    Ann

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    Senior Member Almaviva's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sospiro View Post
    OK advice time

    I'm flying to Milan tomorrow & will have a three hour wait at the airport & then a two hour flight.

    To pass the time I like to listen to an opera & read the libretto.

    Should I take libretti of ones I know & love or of ones I've not heard yet (& may not like)?
    In my opinion, definitely one you haven't heard yet - it's more exciting, I think. About the may not like part, I'm sure you'll be able to find some sure fire thing based on style and other works of the same composer and same singers that you already love.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

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    Senior Member sospiro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Almaviva View Post
    In my opinion, definitely one you haven't heard yet - it's more exciting, I think. About the may not like part, I'm sure you'll be able to find some sure fire thing based on style and other works of the same composer and same singers that you already love.


    OK. Going to limit myself to four, so two new & two old

    I'll let you know
    Ann

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    Senior Member DarkAngel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sospiro View Post
    Lucia di Lammermoor




    I got this as it does include the omitted scenes (as above) & because it's supposed to be the benchmark.

    Milnes is fabulous, Pavarotti didn't compare favourably with di Stefano or Carreras and Sutherland can only sing in vowels. Maybe seeing her live she warranted 'La Stupenda' but not on studio recording. 2/5
    There is the 1961 version in good sound with younger Sutherland at her peak technical singing voice doing amazing things with her massive vocal range and purity of high notes, although many prefer the later version you pictured above for more nuanced performance and stronger supporting cast


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    Senior Member sospiro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DarkAngel View Post
    There is the 1961 version in good sound with younger Sutherland at her peak technical singing voice doing amazing things with her massive vocal range and purity of high notes, although many prefer the later version you pictured above for more nuanced performance and stronger supporting cast

    Thanks DA. I might look out for that one once my credit card recovers from the pounding it's going to get in Italy.

    I wonder if the Donizetti Museum or the Teatro has a shop?
    Ann

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    Quote Originally Posted by Almaviva View Post
    In my opinion, definitely one you haven't heard yet - it's more exciting, I think. About the may not like part, I'm sure you'll be able to find some sure fire thing based on style and other works of the same composer and same singers that you already love.
    Ones I know & love





    Ones I've not heard


    Ann

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    Senior Member DarkAngel's Avatar
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    This is a great deal for $25 at Amazon USA......
    15 CD set of Renata Tebaldi's stereo 1950s Puccini operas, 7 total. These are not live or radio broadcast but the best sound from Decca's vaults, even today considered some of the best performances ever of these works with Tebaldi at her peak ability, booklet has synopsis but not full libretti, contents:

    Manon Lescaut 1954
    Turandot 1955
    Madama Butterfly 1958
    La Fanciulla Del West 1958
    Tosca 1959
    La Boheme 1959
    Il Trittico 1962
    Last edited by DarkAngel; Sep-06-2010 at 02:32.

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    Senior Member Sonata's Avatar
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    That's so tempting Dark Angel, so long as the sound quality is good. Maybe something for the Christmas wish list so long as my opera enjoyment is still fairly strong then, and not just a "niche" genre to add variety to my listening. I was also was looking at "Mozart's Best Operas" (which unfortunately is only an MP3 download) for only 8 dollars. It has Don Giovanni, Marriage of Figaro, The Magic Flute, and Cosi Fan Tutte. I'm going to hold off though...it's just as well. I've obtained over forty CDs worth of music in the past few months. If I keep buying, I'll NEVER get a chance to actually listen to all of it. Amazon has crazy low prices on so much of their classical music.

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    Senior Member jhar26's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DarkAngel View Post


    This is a great deal for $25 at Amazon USA......
    15 CD set of Renata Tebaldi's stereo 1950s Puccini operas, 7 total. These are not live or radio broadcast but the best sound from Decca's vaults, even today considered some of the best performances ever of these works with Tebaldi at her peak ability, booklet has synopsis but not full libretti, contents:

    Manon Lescaut 1954
    Turandot 1955
    Madama Butterfly 1958
    La Fanciulla Del West 1958
    Tosca 1959
    La Boheme 1959
    Il Trittico 1962
    I have that set also. The Manon Lescaut is disappointing, but (especially) the La Fanciulla del West is sensational - one of my favorite Puccini recordings.
    Martha doesn't signal when the orchestra comes in, she's just pursing her lips..

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    Senior Member Almaviva's Avatar
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    I'm listening to this now - very beautiful:

    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

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    The Sony recording of Lucia conducted by the late,great Sir Charles Mackerras is very interesting because it is the first Lucia recording to use period instruments. The interesting thing is that the orchestra doesn't really sound all that different from the Lucia performances we're accustomed to,but there are some subtle differences.
    The cast,with Andrea Rost, Bruce Ford, Anthony Michaels-Moore,and Alastair Miles,has no superstars, but it's very good, and Mackerras makes Donizetti's music sound quite vivid and forceful,without neglecting its Bel Canto elegance.
    However, given reports of the quality of the orchestras in Italy in the early 19th century, the orchestra,London's Hanover band, may actually play the opera much better than it actually was in Donizeti's day. So it's a kind of idealized "authenticity". Still. this recording is very much worth hearing.

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    Senior Member Sonata's Avatar
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    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/ima...56011&s=dmusic

    Sorry it did not post the picture directly. It's Fidelio with Dietrick Fischer-Dieskau, Ferenc Fricsay, and Bavarian State Opera Chorus. Not the loftiest names, but for a mere $1.98 to download, my impulsive self couldn't resist. Sound quality is pretty good, and it's a wonderful performance. Downloaded it Saturday night and I'm already on my second listen right now.

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    Oh, and one thing I wanted to say that I specifically liked with the performance was the harmonizing during the duets and trio songs. Fantastic job there.

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