I already have the Maria Callas Anna Bolena and now want another one. Which should I get:
The recording I think is better than the DVD. As one reviewer on Amazon noted,I watched the Theodossiou clip. It's a bit of a scream and the fast scale passages are a bit sketchy to say the least.
One gripe with the staging, and Theodossiou is not the only one guilty of this, why do so many singers, presumably backed up by their producers, feel the need to scrabble around in the dirt? She was a queen, and even in desperate circumstances, particularly with the court around her, would behave like one. We don't have video evidence of Callas's performances, but in her voice one not only hears outrage, but the outrage of a queen. Such a small point, but an important one.
It appears there are about 7 years between the two. Anyway, I like it, but am still going to check out some other recordings. I have Callas so there is not much value for me to look at other older recordings, but prefer something newer with higher sound quality, and the Theodossiou recording does give very good sound quality. Here are some clips for the sound recording.Her vocal state has deteriorated since her audio-only commercial release of Anna.
I'll check the Suliotis recording out. As far as DVDs go, the Anna Netrebko / Elīna Garanča performance is probably much better. I may watch on You Tube.Yes, these clips do sound a lot better.
The sound quality on the Suliotis recording is pretty spectacular Decca analogue sound, by the way.
In the Biblical sense and the conservative part of Lutheranism would consider engagement (betrothal) as tantamount to marriage. I even recall reading a translation of Martin Luther where he said that if an engaged couple had sex, it would not be fornication, though improper because the state requirement had not been completed. So when the Anna Bolena opera indicates they were married, it is a broken engagement, which makes a lot more sense for the story.Betrothed, not married, which in those days was more like our engaged. If they had been married, they would have had to get a divorce. Incidentally, the story as told in the opera is not historically accurate, though Anna Bolenais a little closer to history than some of the others. Mary, Queen of Scots and Elizabeth I never met, for instance.
I've seen some of the Netrebko, by the way. She never convinces me in bel canto opera, and she too indulges in too much unseemly grovelling on the floor. Her characterisation is altogether too modern.
Interesting, but that brings me to my next question. The Scotto CD cover says "Complete Opera" and "Two CD Set." However my Theodossiou set says "First Complete Recording" and is 3 CDs:
My thoughts exactly!Sills' recording is 3 hr. 14 min.
So any 2CD affair must be approached with caution.
Of course, I would not be without Callas recording, which runs merely 2 hr. 20 min (that's almost 55 minutes shorter!!!)
They aired out just fine and I could not complain at the price since the set was going for about $50 used anywhere else. Sutherland's Anna Bolena is well worth the $15.50 shipped it is costing me. I also picked up an English libretto to Anna Bolena the other day for $3 at a used bookstore (and a German/English one for Lohengrin for $4.80), so I can see Anna Bolena looming very large on my horizon alongside Maria Stuarda. Next Roberto Devereux!For that price one can't be to critical.
A few hours in the backyard and fresh again:tiphat:
They are coming in around $20 plus $10 shipping, though bookbutler is not always accurate on shipping cost. I found where I can get it used for $25 shipped, but that is steep for me on this particular opera, which is not my favorite queen--yet.Amazon France has one, or the shipping cost ridiculous high?
Well, I haven't really listened for a year or so, Bolena was not my favorite Queen opera, and I listened in order to the three Theodossiou, Sills, and Sutherland. It may be the opera was growing on me as I went through them. Also I have never been a fan of Sutherland.Really? I consider that one of Sutherland's weakest studio recordings. (IMHO it was recorded too late in her career.) I am a huge Theodossiou fan so that possibly colours my view somewhat. I will have to give the Sutherland another listen, it's been ages since I last heard it.
And the fact that I don't care for the Sills set for that very reason, is a good reason for me to stay away from the Gruberova set unless, perhaps, if it is in the bargain bin.Sutherland is caught too late, Gruberova and Sills too light of voice,.
I have the big three: Sills, Theo, and Sutherland. I also have Gencer 1959 which is very good, but sound quality is not as good. I do have the Callas set (was my first one), and should give it another listen. But I have one more, and it appears to be a gem from a quick sampling: Renata Scotto, 1975, Julius Rudel (Opera Depot). Other than background hiss, the sound is pretty good. Yep, going to give this one a listen today!Six Foot,
the only totally complete recording is the Theodossiou, but Sutherland's can't be far behind. (I can check later for you, but there are normally cuts in the tenor aria in the second scene of act one even in the more complete performances - these cuts make sense as the aria has an odd stop - start nature to it.)
For your tastes I would imagine the Sutherland possibly is the best bet for a studio recording in modern sound, however the Callas on Myto or Divina isn't in bad sound and it's a riveting performance despite the cuts. Do you have it as well?
Do you know the Souliotis recording? I have a very good live recording with her in and I am thinking of getting her studio one, have you heard it, what do you think? I would imagine you would prefer Sutherland, but your opinion is always interesting.