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Puccini - Madama Butterfly [Double CD]

Victoria De Los Angeles , Coro e Orchestra del Teatro DellOpera di Roma , Puccini , Gianandrea Gavazzeni Audio CD
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: 9.93 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Product details

  • Conductor: Gianandrea Gavazzeni
  • Composer: Puccini
  • Audio CD (21 Mar 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Double CD
  • Label: Brilliant Classics
  • ASIN: B004J80CZM
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 398,432 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Madama Butterfly - Various Performers

Product Description

CD Description

One of the best-loved of all operas, Puccinis Madama Butterfly was given its premiere at La Scala Milan in 1904, where it received a terrible reception. The chemistry of the collaborators should have ensured success - the librettists Luigi Illica and Guiseppe Giacosa had worked with the composer on La bohème and Tosca. Puccini withdrew the work and revised it thoroughly. When this version was presented to the public the adulation was extraordinary, and the work has been a central part of the operatic repertoire ever since. The story is a highly emotional one - of cynical colonial exploitation, blind love and infidelity, a potent mix fuelled by Puccinis high-octane score. The aria Un bel di (One fine day) is the high point of the work where Butterfly, living in poverty with Pinkertons child and her maid Suzuki sings of her confidence that her handsome US Navy captain will return to her. He does eventually return, but not for Butterfly, with tragic consequences. OTHER INFORMATION: Gavazzeni has life, warmth and a sure control. Then there is the compassionate and beautifully sung Sharpless of Tito Gobbi, a more effective presence than that of Mario Sereni, good as he is in the second recording. A better (though hardly ideal) Suzuki further strengthens the cast, and it is good to hear Maria Huder once again in the role of Kate which she sang as long ago as 1939 to the Butterfly of Toti dal Monte. Los Angeles herself is adorable in both sets, the voice in richest bloom here, the portrayal almost unbearably vivid in charm and magnanimity,

Product Description

Victoria De Los Angeles (Madame Butterfly) - Guiseppe Di Stefano (B.F Pinkerton) - Anna Maria Canali (Suzuki) - Tito Gobbi (Sharpless) - Renato Ercolani (Goro/Yamadori) - Coro e Orchestra del Teatro Dell'Opera di Roma - Gianandrea Gavazzeni, direction

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
The other review is nonsense. This is the most devastating account of Butterfly on disc. De los Angeles said this was one of her favourite roles, and is shows. Unlike Callas or many other singers, there is no attempt to sound coy or twee when playing a 15 year old in Act 1. De los Angeles is wonderfully natural throughout. Of course, that can only be achieved by art of the highest order, and a good technique. Her attention to words, her subtle phrasing and her understanding of the role are unmatched, and she proves herself a surprisingly convincing singing actress. The highest notes take her to her limit, but no more so than Callas or Scotto, and those extremes suit the dramatic situation. If you just want a beautiful sound, without drama, then this may not be for you. But if you want a performance that will, as Puccini intended, break your heart, this is a great bargain.

With di Stefano and Gobbi, the supporting cast is ideal. Vivdly conducted and performed with passion, this is a classic recording. But the sound is definitely historic mono and a little shrill. Unfortunately this is the sort of sound that does not transfer to CD especially well. I have the original LPs - they sound far more mellow. But a few adjustments of treble tone on your CD player should mitigate the problem. And this is such a cherishable, embraceable butterfly that it's worth it.
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0 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Di Stefano but poor Los Angeles 31 Oct 2011
This recording is quite old and you can notice it while listening the orchestra that sounds so "far".
Di Stefano is wonderful, with is full, charming and warm voice,
In the contrary Victoria Los Angeles does not sound in good shape: in all the acute part sounds like a poor hen going to be strangled!
On the whole a recoding that you can avoid buying...
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