Three Legendary Tenors [DVD]
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Before Domingo, Carreras and Pavarotti caught the public's imagination, three other legendary tenors, Enrico Caruso, Beniamino Gigli and Jussi Björling, defined the art form. Presented by internationally-renowned British tenor Nigel Douglas, this fascinating documentary examines the lives and musical legacies of these celebrated tenors. Through rare archive footage, including some of their finest arias and songs, as well as interviews, this film looks at each vocalist and how their unique talents not only shaped their art, but caused them to become singing superstars who inspired and influenced subsequent generations of singers throughout the world.
From the Contributor
Enrico Carusos first singing teacher told him "Your voice is like the whistling of the wind through a window"; but when he died the London Times felt able to declare "It is quite safe to say that no tenor voice equal to his, in its combination of power and extreme beauty of quality, has been heard in this generation." Jussi Björling was a native of the Swedish town of Borlange, and although, like his idol Caruso, he died at a tragically early age, he spent a remarkable proportion of his life singing in public. He was still only 19 when he started appearing in leading roles in the Royal Opera, Stockholm, and by the age of 25 was launched on an international career, singing roles as demanding as Radames and Manrico, with most of the worlds great opera houses taking their place in the queue.Beniamino Gigli naturally suffered from peoples insistence on calling him Carusos successor. In the sense of his being the worlds most popular Italian tenor the label was justified, but Gigli was far too adept to ape his great predecessor in a vocal sense. In time he became a seriously rich man - starring in numerous films had been a help - although he himself was fond of saying, with sincere self-recognition, "Apart from my voice I am a very ordinary person."See all Product description
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Top customer reviews
The subject is presented in a comfortable way, and provides a valuable insight into my favourite opera singers.
My only slight criticism would be that if you do not know opera or these singers, the opera snippets which appear
as exemplars are not always identified with the singer immediately spoken of. That is to say, when the speaker
changes his subjects from one point to the next, you cannot tell whether he is referring to the current snippet or
the previous example; and thusly, you may like the sound of JJB singing Federico's Aria, but be totally clueless
who is actually singing it and when. Disappointing if you want to follow it up.
That said, a wonderful, if all too short film. Easily recommend it.
I have listened to recordings of these three since I was a child as my father was a huge fan, so I have over 50 years experience of them. There was a series about Opera stars on the BBC several years ago and that series covered these 3 in much more detail. I have to agree with the poll mentioned in the program, that Bjorling was the finest voice of all.
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