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D. Clarke "David Clarke" (UK)

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Verdi: La Traviata
Verdi: La Traviata
Offered by thebookcommunity
Price: £52.95

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars History, 31 Aug. 2010
This review is from: Verdi: La Traviata (Audio CD)
Buy a used copy for a modest sum and you have a seat at a live performence of arguably the greatest ensemble to perform this opera. The singing is much better than the erratic quality that spoils many live performences and there are less extraneous noises thab usual. Di Stefano is in much richer voice here than in later years although Bastianini's voice is not as sonorous as on subsequent stereo recordings. The great appeal of the recording is having Callas together with such perfect exponents of the leading roles. However a live recording is simply not the medium to appreciate the quality of these voices which was confirmed when I next listened to a studio recording of an other opera which was several years older but where the voices are perfectly preserved. Nor am I convinced that a live performence provides any superior exposition of the drama and for listening pleasure I would always choose studio sound. I would still recommend this recording for anyone interested in the greatest performences and voices of all time.

Ponchielli: La Gioconda
Ponchielli: La Gioconda

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Greatly Underated, 25 April 2010
This review is from: Ponchielli: La Gioconda (Audio CD)
I have learned a great deal from Ralph Moore's inspirational reviews but would like to record my disagreement that the Tebaldi recording is the ultimate version of La Giaconda. The male voices just do not match up to their counterparts on the Gavazzini recording and indeed it is difficult to think of any recording I have heard to match the singing of these three male voices together. Much as I admire Bergonzi, he cannnot match Del Monaco's powerful ringing tones in this part and Bastiannini is peerless in his role. But perhaps it is Siepi's velvet growl that one misses most compared to Ghiuselev's gravelly tones. Even Cerquetti's deep mellifilous tones are immensely enjoyable and contribute to the character of this wonderful interpretation. After listening to the Tebaldi, Callas and Cerquetti versions many times I find the latter by far the most satisfying for the even and outstanding quality of the principal voices. It is a truely wonderful interpretation of an opera that deserves to be more widely appreciated.

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