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Donizetti: La Favorita

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Amazon.com: 2 reviews
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Giulietta Simionata the best in this role 7 Jun 2009
By Young American - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This a very beautiful opera has been semi-neglected in performance, like many of Donizetti's masterpieces. It has also been under-recorded.

Among those recordings, Giulietta Simionato is the most noble, beautifully sung Leonora. She makes her character's predicament (she is the king's concubine who falls in love with an unwordly young man) moving and believable. So much feeling, so much nuance. The orchestra, under Alberto Erede, plays with perfect style and the other solists, with one exception, are great. Unfortunately Gianni Poggi, the Fernando here, is technically accomplished but sings with a "white" unappealing tone and so his big aria "Spirito gentil" is not as beautiful as it should be. Why Decca didn't record the opera with Giuseppe di Stefano, in his glorious hey-day at the time of this recording, I'll never know. (He did sing Fernando with Simionato on stage). Poggi, and Decca's habitual cheapness in not providing a libretto, keep me from giving this disc the full five stars.

There are Favoritas on disc and on DVD with Fiorenza Cossotto. She had a very good voice but was never particularly moving. There is also a recent "La Favorite" in the original French with notes and a libretto with translations, but the mezzo is problematic. Try to find a libretto on-line and buy this set while it is still available.
8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Great Find 29 April 2005
By ErickCindy - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This Donnizetti opera was sure a treasure to find. Sung in Italian, it is a spendid representative of Bel Canto. Florid and tender music/vocal lines are a feast for the opera lover! The only disappointment was the lack of a libretto. Alas, I must continue to search for one. This fine recording will be a rewarding purchase to anyone wanting to explore Bel Canto.
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