9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 21 February 2012
It saddens me when one considers the fact that Domingo recorded Otello three times. His first for RCA was closely followed by this Decca recording with Carlo Cossutta in the title role. Cossutta is simply better: better suited vocally and, in my opinion, a better interpreter of the role - yet Domingo gets all the press.
From the "Esultate" onwards you are confident Cossutta has the vocal range right up to a rock solid B natural (the C is not counted as it is only touched). He is not tempted into vocal mannerisms nor is he tempted to ham-up the soliloquy. I think he is even better than Vickers (in his second crack of the role under Karajan).
Margaret Price is a wonderful Desdemona - assured, clear of tone and an impassioned performance.
Gabriel Bacquier is straining at times as Iago but he makes up for it with his interpretation, particularly in the recitative.
The Vienna Philharmonic orchestra and chorus seem to have a god-given right to play this opera as it should be - particularly under Solti. It will be worth your money to get a copy.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
This recording was made in the Sofiensaal in Vienna back in 1977. The conductor, Sir Georg Solti, made a subsequent recording with Luciano Pavarotti a number of years later, but this is undoubtedly the better version and it is, I would suggest, one of the very best available.
Carlo Cossutta never achieved superstar status, but his trumpet-toned tenor seems to me to be well nigh perfect for the role of Otello and he sings and acts with great sensitivity. Margaret Price is to my mind the finest Desdemona on record; it is a gorgeous voice, of course, but she too sings with great intelligence and sensitivity. Nobody would pretend that Gabriel Bacquier had the most beautiful baritone voice of all time, but it is eminently suited to the role of Iago and he was, of course, one of the finest singing actors of his generation.
The supporting cast is probably the strongest ever assembled on disc. Peter Dvorsky is stellar casting as Cassio, while the great Evangelist Kurt Equiluz makes his mark in the third tenor role, Roderigo. Jane Berbié is a superb Emilia, while the two remaining supporting roles are taken by Kurt Moll and Stafford Dean, arguably my two favourite basses of all time!
The Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra and the State Opera Chorus are both on top form, as is Sir Georg, and the recorded sound is excellent. Moreover, at this budget price, this is a "must-buy" disc the fact that all we are given is a brief synopsis (no libretto is included) is no great price to pay when opera libretti are so readily accessible online.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 11 June 2013
Why on earth was my CD & LP collection missing an Otello? I saw it in Covent Garden aeons ago, as a student watching from the Gods, conducted by Solti himself. A performance never to be forgotten, and now I can listen again to the great maestro at a reasonable price. He brought electricity to everything he conducted, and this is no different.