23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
THE definitive Boheme,
By A Customer
This review is from: Puccini: La Bohème (Audio CD)
This recording was the result of a fortuitous availability of the singers and conductor. It was 'cobbled' together almost 'because they were there' - But the results are superb. The sound (mono) is excellent and very good on todays equipment. Beecham's conducting and pace bring everything to life whilst the quality of the vocal performance is spellbinding. Bjorling was sometimes thought of as perhaps lacking some expression - but not here. His voice on the realisation that Mimi has died sends chills down the spine, whilst the blending of soprano and tenor in the love duet ending Act 1 is tender and passionate. De los Angeles is perfect as Mimi and both Bob Merrill (who was principle baritone at the Met for maany years)and Amara are both in fine form. Chorus and small parts are equally good - parpignol and the boys choir superb in Act 2. I have older (Gigli) and younger (Pavarotti) versions of Boheme - but this is the one I come back to.