• Tosca: Discography (audio)

    There are literally well in excess of one hundred different recordings of Tosca. For the purposes of this Opera Lively In-Depth we will just review what we consider to be the best, in the understanding that we are not familiar with all of them.

    SCROLL DOWN TO THE COMMENTS SECTION BELOW TO READ MORE REVIEWS, AFTER A LIST OF THE AVAILABLE RECORDINGS



    Oliviero de Fabritiis (1938)

    Floria Tosca - Maria Caniglia
    Mario Cavaradossi - Beniamino Gigli
    Baron Scarpia - Armando Borgioli

    Orchestra and Chorus Opera di Roma
    Studio


    This was the first truly outstanding recording of Tosca. In 1938, Gigli had been singing Cavaradossi for more than twenty years, he was a real expert, and in addition to his great technique and wonderful voice, he also acted the part. A really moving, romantic, dashing hero, perhaps coming short in the heroic aspects. Caniglia was one of the leading sopranos of the 1930s, and she is a convincing Floria Tosca, even if she sounds a little too 'verista' and generic. Borgioli was also singing in the best houses around the world, but his Scarpia is rather crude and impassive, reacting rather than acting. Conducting is fine, but it can not be fully appreciated because the sound quality, good for the voices, it's not that good for the orchestra.

    Overall: B


    This article was originally published in forum thread: Tosca: Discography started by Schigolch View original post
    Comments 8 Comments
    1. Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
      Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) -
      In addition to the main 100+ recordings mentioned above, this is a list of even more, going up to 250 recordings (we reach these numbers if we count obscure labels with small circulation that sometimes differ from the main recordings in details such as a changed member of the cast - and in certain cases non-commercial releases for internal distribution or those done by bootleg makers) of Tosca between 1918 and 2009 (there's been more since 2009 such as recent video releases):

      1 1918-19(STC) - Sabajno Carlo - Grande Orchestra*
      2 1919(STU) - Sabajno Carlo - Grande Orchestra Sinfonica di Milano*
      3 1929(STU) - Molajoli Lorenzo - Teatro alla Scala*
      4 1929-30(STU) - Sabajno Carlo - Teatro alla Scala*
      5 1932(Act 1;LE) - Merola Gaetano - San Francisco Opera*
      6 1932(STU) - Cloéz Gustav - L'Opéra-Comique de Paris*
      7 1938(STU) - Fabritiis Oliviero De - Teatro Reale dell'Opera di Roma*
      8 1941(ACT 3;SE) - Peroni Carlo - Chicago Opera*
      9 1941(RE) - Steinkopf Hanns - Reichsender Berlin*
      10 1942(LI) - Panizza Ettore - Metropolitan Opera*
      11 1944(LI) - Sodero Cesare - Metropolitan Opera*
      12 1944(RA) - Ludwig Leopold - Berliner Rundfunk-Sinfonie-Orchester*
      13 1946(LE) - Herbert Walter - Palacio de las Bellas Artes*
      14 1946(LI) - Sodero Cesare - Metropolitan Opera*
      15 1947(LE) - Antonicelli Giuseppe - Metropolitan Opera*
      16 1950(LI) - Antonicelli Giuseppe - Metropolitan Opera*
      17 1950(LI) - Mugnai Umberto - Palacio de las Bellas Artes*
      18 1950(RA) - Schröder Kurt - Sinfonie-Orchester des Hessischen Rundfunks*
      19 1951(LE) - Benedetti René - Orchestre de la Suisse Romande*
      20 1951(LE) - Votto Antonino - Teatro Municipal do Rio de Janeiro*
      21 1951(RA) - Molinari-Pradelli Francesco - RAI Torino*
      22 1951(STU) - Quadri Argeo - Wiener Staatsoper*
      23 1951(STU) - Tieri Emidio - Maggio Musicale Fiorentino*
      24 1952(LI) - Cleva Fausto - Metropolitan Opera*
      25 1952(LI) - Picco Guido - Palacio de las Bellas Artes*
      26 1952(STU) - Erede Alberto - Santa Cecilia*
      27 1953(RA) - Kraus Richard - Sinfonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks*
      28 1953(RA) - Schüchter Wilhelm - Orchester des Nordwestdeutschen Rundfunks (Hamburg)*
      29 1953(SE) - Guarnieri Arrigo - Orchestra Antonio Guarnieri di Milano*
      30 1953(SE) - Wolff Albert - L'Opéra Comique de Paris*
      31 1953(STU) - Sabata Victor de - Teatro alla Scala*
      32 1954(LI) - Fabritiis Oliviero De - Teatro Municipal de Rio de Janeiro*
      33 1955(FI) - Adler Peter Herman - Symphony of the Air Orchestra*
      34 1955(FI) - Votto Antonino - RAI Milano***
      35 1955(LI) - Bellezza Vincenzo - Teatro di San Carlo di Napoli*
      36 1955(LI) - Mitropoulos Dimitri - Metropolitan Opera*
      37 1955(LI) - Molinari-Pradelli Francesco - Covent Garden*
      38 1955(RA) - Basile Arturo - RAI Torino*
      39 1955?(SCE) - Lukács - Pál Varga - Vilmos Komor Miklós - Hungarian State Opera*
      40 1956(FI) - Fabritiis Oliviero De - Teatro dell'Opera di Roma**
      41 1956(LI) - Mitropoulos Dimitri - Metropolitan Opera*
      42 1957(LI) - Gibson Alexander - Covent Garden*
      43 1957(LI) - Mitropoulos Dimitri - Metropolitan Opera*
      44 1957(RA) - Tieri Emidio - RAI Milano*
      45 1957(SE) - Mitropoulos Dimitri - Metropolitan Opera*
      46 1957(STU) - Leinsdorf Erich - Teatro dell'Opera di Roma*
      47 1957(STU) - Serafin Tullio - Teatro di San Carlo di Napoli*
      48 1958(Act 2;LE) - Sébastian Georges - L'Opéra de Paris***
      49 1958(LI)-Brussels - Gavazzeni Gianandrea - Teatro alla Scala*
      50 1958(LI) - Mitropoulos Dimitri - Metropolitan Opera*
      51 1958?(SE) - Strasfogel Ignace - PIANO*
      52 1959(LC) - Grevillius Nils - Kungl. Hovkapellet*
      53 1959(LI)-Milan - Gavazzeni Gianandrea - Teatro alla Scala*
      54 1959(LI) - Adler Kurt - Metropolitan Opera*
      55 1959(LI) - Mitropoulos Dimitri - Metropolitan Opera*
      56 1959(LI) - Parenti Mario - Orchestra del Comitato Estate Livornese*
      57 1959(SE) - Klobucar Berislav - Berliner Symphoniker*
      58 1959(STU) - Molinari-Pradelli Francesco - Santa Cecilia*
      59 1960(FI) - Vernizzi Fulvio - RAI Torino***
      60 1960(LI) - Mitropoulos Dimitri - Metropolitan Opera*
      61 1960(SE) - Prêtre Georges - L'Opéra de Paris*
      62 1960(STU) - Rosenthal Manuel - L'Opéra de Paris*
      63 1960(STU) - Stein Horst - Staatskapelle Berlin*
      64 1960?(SE) - Erdélyi Miklós - Hungarian State Opera*
      65 1961(LI) - Basile Arturo - NHK Symphony Orchestra***
      66 1961(LI) - Downes Edward - Covent Garden*
      67 1961(LI) - Fabritiis Oliviero De - Teatro dell'Opera di Roma*
      68 1961(LI) - Patanè Franco - Württembergische Staatsoper**
      69 1961(SE) - Etcheverry Jésus - Orchestre*
      70 1961?(SE) - Amati Giancarlo - Orchestre*
      71 1961?(SE) - Bauer-Theussl Franz - Wiener Volksoper*
      72 1962(LE) - Fabritiis Oliviero De - Arena di Verona*
      73 1962(LI) - Adler Kurt - Metropolitan Opera*
      74 1962(LI) - Adler Kurt - Metropolitan Opera*
      75 1962(LI) - Cillario Carlo Felice - Teatro Colón - Buenos Aires*
      76 1962(LI) - Karajan Herbert von - Wiener Staatsoper*
      77 1962(LI) - Patanè Franco - Lyric Opera of Philadelphia*
      78 1962(STU) - Karajan Herbert von - Wiener Philharmoniker*
      79 1963(LI) - Fabritiis Oliviero De - Teatro Massimo di Palermo*
      80 1963(LI) - Moresco Carlo - Philadelphia Grand Opera Company*
      81 1964(LI) - Bartoletti Bruno - Chicago Lyric Opera*
      82 1964(LI) - Cillario Carlo Felice - Covent Garden*
      83 1964(LI) - Guadagno Anton - Lyric Opera of Philadelphia*
      84 1964(LI) - Molinari-Pradelli Francesco - Teatro Municipal de Rio de Janeiro*
      85 1964(LI;18/4/64 - Nilsson) - Cleva Fausto - Metropolitan Opera*
      86 1964(LI;22/3/1964 - Tebaldi) - Cleva Fausto - Metropolitan Opera*
      87 1964(SE) - Cillario Carlo Felice - Covent Garden**
      88 1964(STU) - Prêtre Georges - Orchestre de la Société des Concerts du Conservatoire (Paris)*
      89 1964(STU) - Svetlanov Evgeny - USSR State Orchestra*
      90 1965(LI) - Argento Pietro - Orchestra del Teatro Communale dell'Opera di Genova***
      91 1965(LI) - Basile Arturo - RAI Roma*
      92 1965(LI) - Prêtre Georges - Covent Garden*
      93 1965(LI) - Rescigno Nicola - L'Opéra de Paris*
      94 1965(LI;10/7/65) - Bartoletti Bruno - Teatro Colón (Buenos Aires)*
      95 1965(LI;11/7/65) - Bartoletti Bruno - Teatro Colón (Buenos Aires)*
      96 1965(LI;17/4/65) - Cleva Fausto - Metropolitan Opera*
      97 1965(LI;19/3/65) - Cleva Fausto - Metropolitan Opera*
      98 1965(LI;23/3/65) - Cleva Fausto - Metropolitan Opera*
      99 1965(LI;3/4/65) - Cleva Fausto - Metropolitan Opera*
      100 1966(LI) - Andersson Knud - New Orleans Opera*
      101 1966(LI) - Cluytens André - Wiener Staatsoper*
      102 1966(SE) - Maazel Lorin - Santa Cecilia*
      103 1966(STU) - Maazel Lorin - Santa Cecilia*
      104 1967(LI) - Buckley Emerson - New York City Opera*
      105 1967(LI) - Krips Josef - Wiener Staatsoper*
      106 1967(LI) - Morelli Giuseppe - Teatro Regio di Parma*
      107 1967(LI) - Moresco Carlo - Philadelphia Grand Opera Company*
      108 1967(LI;17-1-67) - Cleva Fausto - Philadelphia Lyric Opera*
      109 1967(LI;31-1-67) - Cleva Fausto - Philadelphia Lyric Opera*
      110 1968(LI) - Cillario Carlo Felice - Elizabethan Trust Orchestra*
      111 1968(LI) - Jensen Allen - Orchestra*
      112 1968(LI) - Mehta Zubin - Metropolitan Opera*
      113 1968(LI) - Moresco Carlo - Philadelphia Grand Opera Company*
      114 1969(LI) - Benzi Roberto - Omroep Orkest*
      115 1969(LI) - Maazel Lorin - Deutsche Oper Berlin*
      116 1969(LI) - Schick George - Metropolitan Opera*
      117 1969(LI;Kónya) - Molinari-Pradelli Francesco - Metropolitan Opera*
      118 1969(LI;Tucker) - Molinari-Pradelli Francesco - Metropolitan Opera*
      119 1970(LI) - Levine James - San Francisco Opera*
      120 1970(LI) - Silipigni Alfredo - New Jersey Opera*
      121 1970(LI;Ross) - Molinari-Pradelli Francesco - Metropolitan Opera*
      122 1970(LI;Tebaldi) - Molinari-Pradelli Francesco - Metropolitan Opera*
      123 1971(LI) - Ermler Mark - Bolshoi Theatre*
      124 1971(LI) - Fabritiis Oliviero De - Orquesta de Cámara de Madrid*
      125 1971(LI) - Halasz Laszlo - Orchestra*
      126 1971(LI) - Sanzogno Nino - Chicago Lyric Opera*
      127 1971(LI;12/6/71) - Levine James - Metropolitan Opera*
      128 1971(LI;6/11/71) - Levine James - Metropolitan Opera*
      129 1972(LI) - McConathy Osborne - Boston Opera*
      130 1972(LI) - Sanzogno Nino - San Francisco Opera*
      131 1972(LI) - Savini Ino - Teatro Comunale di Bologna*
      132 1972?(LI) - Downes Edward - Covent Garden*
      133 1973(LI) - Fabritiis Oliviero De - NHK Symphony Orchestra***
      134 1973(LI) - Fabritiis Oliviero De - Teatro São Carlos (Lisboa)*
      135 1973(STU) - Mehta Zubin - New Philharmonia Orchestra*
      136 1974(LI) - Molinari-Pradelli Francesco - Teatro alla Scala*
      137 1974(LI) - Morelli Giuseppe - New York City Opera*
      138 1974(LI) - Rudel Julius - Los Angeles Opera*
      139 1975(LE) - Molinari-Pradelli Francesco - Teatro Margherita di Genova*
      140 1975(LI) - Behr Jan - Metropolitan Opera*
      141 1975(LI) - Erede Alberto - Metropolitan Opera*
      142 1975(LI) - Erede Alberto - Metropolitan Opera*
      143 1975(LI) - Morelli Giuseppe - New York City Opera*
      144 1975(LI) - Morelli Giuseppe - Teatro Liceo (Barcelona)*
      145 1975(LI) - Seibel Klauspeter - Frankfurter Oper*
      146 1975(LI) - Ventura Alberto - NHK Symphony Orchestra***
      147 1976(FI) - Bartoletti Bruno - New Philharmonia Orchestra**
      148 1976(LI) - Campori Angelo - Orchestra Stabile Emiglia-Romagna*
      149 1976(LI) - Gatto Armando - Gran Teatro del Liceo*
      150 1976(LI) - López Cobos Jesús - Bayerische Staatsoper*
      151 1976(LI) - López Cobos Jesús - Chicago Lyric Opera*
      152 1976(LI) - Stein Horst - Wiener Staatsoper*
      153 1976(STU) - Davis Colin - Covent Garden*
      154 1976(STU) - Ermler Mark - Bolshoi Theatre*
      155 1976(STU) - Rostropovich Mstislav - Orchestre National de France*
      156 1977(LI) - Erede Alberto - Wiener Staatsoper*
      157 1977(LI) - Levine James - Metropolitan Opera*
      158 1977(LI) - López Cobos Jesús - Bayerische Staatsoper*
      159 1977(LI) - Santi Nello - Metropolitan Opera*
      160 1977(LI) - Stein Horst - Wiener Staatsoper*
      161 1977(LI) - Woitach Richard - Metropolitan Opera*
      162 1977(LI;Caballé) - Stapleton Robin - Covent Garden*
      163 1977(LI;Vishnevskaya) - Stapleton Robin - Covent Garden*
      164 1977(STU) - Trailescu Cornel - National Opera of Bucharest*
      165 1977?(LI) - Guadagno Anton - National Philharmonic Orchestra*
      166 1978(LI) - Conlon James - Metropolitan Opera*
      167 1978(LI) - Montgomery Kenneth - Omroeporkest*
      168 1978(LI) - Peloso Paolo - San Francisco Opera*
      169 1978(STU) - Rescigno Nicola - National Philharmonic Orchestra*
      170 1979(LI) - Adler Kurt - Opera Company of Philadelphia*
      171 1979(LI) - Adler Kurt Herbert - San Francisco Opera***
      172 1979(LI) - Conlon James - Metropolitan Opera*
      173 1979(LI) - Davis Colin - Covent Garden***
      174 1979(STU) - Karajan Herbert von - Berliner Philharmoniker*
      175 1980(LI) - Ozawa Seiji - Teatro alla Scala**
      176 1980(LI) - Patanè Giuseppe - Metropolitan Opera*
      177 1980(STU) - Levine James - Philharmonia Orchestra*
      178 1981(LI) - Boncompagni Elio - L'Opéra de Marseille*
      179 1981(LI) - Brott Boris - Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra**
      180 1981(LI) - Patanè Giuseppe - Metropolitan Opera*
      181 1981(LI) - Varviso Silvio - Covent Garden*
      182 1982(LI) - Karajan Herbert von - Berliner Philharmoniker*
      183 1982(LI) - Ozawa Seiji - L'Opéra de Paris**
      184 1982(LI) - Rivoli Gianfranco - L'Opéra de Paris*
      185 1982(STU) - Bellini Gabriele - Bulgarian Philharmonic*
      186 1983(LI) - Gandolfi Romano - Gran Teatro del Liceo*
      187 1983(LI) - Suitner Otmar - Berliner Staatsoper*
      188 1984(LI) - DeMain John - Houston Grand Opera*
      189 1984(LI) - Frajese Carlo - Teatro dell'Aquila (Fermo)*
      190 1984(LI) - Oren Daniel - Verona Arena***
      191 1984(STU) - Solti Georg - National Philharmonic Orchestra*
      192 1985(LC) - Sinopoli Giuseppe - Metropolitan Opera**
      193 1985(LI) - Kohn Eugene - Australian Opera*
      194 1985(LI) - López Cobos Jesús - Deutsche Oper Berlin*
      195 1985(LI) - Patanè Giuseppe - Bayerische Staatsoper*
      196 1985(LI) - Varviso Silvio - Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra (expanded)*
      197 1986 - Erede Alberto - Elizabethan Philharmonic Orchestra**
      198 1988(STU) - Tilson Thomas Michael - Hungarian State Orchestra*
      199 1989(LI) - Giovaninetti Reynald - Pittsburgh Opera*
      200 1989(LI;11/2/89)) - Severini Tiziano - Teatro alla Scala*
      201 1989(LI;17/2/89) - Severini Tiziano - Teatro alla Scala*
      202 1989?LI) - Bradshaw Richard - Canadian Opera Company***
      203 198?(STU) - Lazarev Alexander - Bolshoi Theatre*
      204 1990(LI) - Oren Daniel - Teatro dell'Opera di Roma***
      205 1990(STU) - Rahbari Alexander - Czecho-Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra*
      206 1990(STU) - Sinopoli Giuseppe - Philharmonia Orchestra*
      207 1991(LI) - Plasson Michel - Covent Garden*
      208 1991-92(LC) - Muti Riccardo - Philadelphia Orchestra*
      209 1992(FI) - Mehta Zubin - RAI Roma***
      210 1993(LI) - Badea Christian - Metropolitan Opera*
      211 1993(LI) - Notev Giorgio - Sofia Symphony Orchestra*
      212 1994(LI) - Mercurio Steven - Opera Company of Philadelphia*
      213 1994(LI) - Veltri Michelangelo - L'Opéra National de Paris**
      214 1995(LI) - Young Simone - Covent Garden*
      215 1995(STU) - Parry David - Philharmonia Orchestra*
      216 1995(STU) - Rahbari Alexander - Orquesta Sinfónica de Barcelona*
      217 1997(LI) - Guadagno Anton - Orchestra del Festival Puccini*
      218 1997(LI;Gorchakova) - Bychkov Semyon - Teatro alla Scala***
      219 1997(LI;Millo) - Bychkov Semyon - Teatro alla Scala*
      220 1998(LI) - Viotti Marcello - Deutsche Oper Berlin*
      221 1998(LI;Malfitano) - Chailly Riccardo - Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra**
      222 1998(LI;Miricioiu) - Chailly Riccardo - Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra*
      223 1998?(SE) - Ozawa Seiji - Maggio Musicale Fiorentino*
      224 1999(LI) - Santi Nello - Metropolitan Opera*
      225 2000(LC; Guleghina, Licitra) - Muti Riccardo - Teatro alla Scala***
      226 2000(LI) - Domingo Plácido - Teatro dell'Opera di Roma**
      227 2000(LI) - Morandi Pier Giorgio - Orchestra Sinfonica dell'Istituzione Concertistico Orchestrale della Provincia di Bari**
      228 2000(LI) - Oren Daniel - Metropolitan Opera*
      229 2000(LI) - Rizzi Carlo - Covent Garden*
      230 2000(LI; Casolla, Licitra) - Muti Riccardo - Teatro alla Scala*
      231 2000(LI; Casolla, Volonte) - Muti Riccardo - Teatro alla Scala*
      232 2000(STU) - Pappano Antonio - Covent Garden***
      233 2000? - Szreder Tomasz - Wroclaw Opera*
      234 2001(LI) - Rizzi Carlo - Opernhaus Zürich*
      235 2001(STU) - Mehta Zubin - Maggio Musicale Fiorentino*
      236 2002(LI) - Gatti Daniele - Teatro Comunale di Bologna**
      237 2003(LI) - Allemandi Antonello - Houston Grand Opera*
      238 2003(LI) - Ozawa Seiji - Wiener Staatsoper*
      239 2004(LC) - Benini Maurizio - Teatro Real, Madrid**
      240 2005(LI) - Bartoletti Bruno - Chicago Lyric Opera*
      241 2005(LI) - Conlon James - Metropolitan Opera*
      242 2005(LI) - Mehta Zubin - Maggio Musicale Fiorentino*
      243 2006(LI) - Oren Daniel - Arena di Verona**
      244 2006(LI) - Pappano Antonio - Covent Garden*
      245 2007(LI) - Gullberg Jensen Eivind - Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester, Berlin*
      246 2007(LI) - Morar Adrian - Opera Nationala Bucuresti*
      247 2007(LI) - Schirmer Ulf - Wiener Symphoniker**
      248 2008(LI) - Sutej Vlekoslav - Seattle Opera*
      249 2009(LI) - Morandi Pier Giorgio - Wiener Staatsoper*
      250 2009(LI) - Solyom Stefan - L'Opéra National de Paris*
      *AUDIO ---- **VIDEO ---- ***AUDIO & VIDEO
    1. Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
      Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) -

      Victor de Sabata - 1953

      Floria Tosca - Maria Callas
      Scarpia - Titto Gobbi
      Mario Cavaradossi - Giuseppe di Stefano

      Orchestra and Chorus of the Teatro alla Scala, Milan, IT
      Studio - Mono

      This studio recording - EMI Classics CMS5 67756-2 on 2 CDs) is from 1953, and is arguably the finest Tosca on record. Conducting by Victor de Sabata is truly excellent, with great emphasis given to each motif and tremendous pace and momentum. Maria Callas shines with all sorts of nuances, from love to hate, from volatile to dignified. Gobbi sings with raw force and truly conveys Scarpia's nastiness. Di Stefano is a bit too delicate as it is usual for him, in the presence of such powerful singers like Callas and Gobbi, but is still a pleasure to hear. The sound is unfortunately in mono, but this remains a staple of the repertory and can't be rated with any less than A+. It is available on Amazon.com: http://www.amazon.com/Puccini-Tosca-...a+maria+callas

      Overall: A+
    1. Schigolch's Avatar
      Schigolch -


      Umberto Mignai (1950)

      Floria Tosca - Maria Callas
      Mario Cavaradossi - Mario Filippeschi
      Baron Scarpia - Robert Weede

      Orchestra and Chorus Opera Mexico
      Live



      The first rendition of Maria Callas's Tosca. This is a very interesting document, though the sound quality is poor, and sometimes it seems the orchestra and the singers are divorced. But if we pay attention to the voice of Callas, here is powerful, dominant, a truly terrifying Tosca. Mr. Weede is clearly unable to match her, and we are even moved to sympathy for the doomed policeman, he can't fight or intimidate such a force of nature. Filippeschi can't place one of his trademark high notes here, and he is just an average Cavaradossi.

      Overall: B-


    1. Schigolch's Avatar
      Schigolch -


      Dimitri Mitropoulos (1956)

      Floria Tosca - Renata Tebaldi
      Mario Cavaradossi - Richard Tucker
      Baron Scarpia - Leonard Warren

      MET Orchestra
      Live



      Renata Tebaldi is at her very best here, literally sculpting Floria Tosca with song, as Michelangelo sculpted the David. Apart from the glorious beauty of the voice, we are served with a true exhibition of singing, and even with true drama. Tucker was not the most refined of singers, but he is convincing as the young, fiery and impetuous Cavaradossi, while Warren is a vile villain, though a little bit too coarse at times. Mitropoulos conducting is precise and beautiful, as usual.


      Overall: A


    1. Schigolch's Avatar
      Schigolch -


      Kurt Adler (1962)

      Floria Tosca - Leontyne Price
      Mario Cavaradossi - Franco Corelli
      Baron Scarpia - Cornell Macneill

      MET Orchestra
      Live



      Price is indeed a fiery and spirited Tosca, but perhaps not the Italian kind. She was convincing enough however in most of the role, while the "Vissi d'arte" is rather flat. Corelli was one of the stalwarts of the role, with a voice perfectly suited for Cavaradossi. He is in this recording, however, like he was Napoleon at Marengo, instead of a painter fighting for freedom and love in Rome. Cornell MacNeill sings a satisfying Scarpia, making the refined and degenerate policeman sounding just as an almost Kafkian civil servant. The orchestra, under Adler, is good but not exceptional. Fine sound for the period.


      Overall: B


    1. Schigolch's Avatar
      Schigolch -


      Colin Davis (1976)

      Floria Tosca - Montserrat Caballé
      Mario Cavaradossi - Josep Carreras
      Baron Scarpia - Ingvar Wixell

      Royal Opera House Orchestra
      Studio



      Caballé was a great Floria Tosca... singing the First Act. In the rest of the opera, while in this recording her voice is peerless, almost impossibly beautiful at times, she can't fully transmit the drama. Something similar can be said of Carreras, that was starting his trend to sing too heavy roles for his voice, giving us some great moments, but ruining his voice in the effort. His is a very lyrical Cavaradossi, but also a light weight one. Wixell was also missing some solidity as Scarpia, but he delivers a convincing villain in the Second Act. Samuel Ramey, as a bonus, appears in the minor role of Angelotti. Colin Davis is obtaining a good balance between the orchestra and the singers, something that is necessary to deliver first class Puccini's performances.


      Overall: B


    1. Dark_Angel's Avatar
      Dark_Angel -
      Quote Originally Posted by Almaviva View Post

      Victor de Sabata - 1953

      Floria Tosca - Maria Callas
      Scarpia - Titto Gobbi
      Mario Cavaradossi - Giuseppe di Stefano

      Orchestra and Chorus of the Teatro alla Scala, Milan, IT
      Studio - Mono

      This studio recording - EMI Classics CMS5 67756-2 on 2 CDs) is from 1953, and is arguably the finest Tosca on record. Conducting by Victor de Sabata is truly excellent, with great emphasis given to each motif and tremendous pace and momentum. Maria Callas shines with all sorts of nuances, from love to hate, from volatile to dignified. Gobbi sings with raw force and truly conveys Scarpia's nastiness. Di Stefano is a bit too delicate as it is usual for him, in the presence of such powerful singers like Callas and Gobbi, but is still a pleasure to hear. The sound is unfortunately in mono, but this remains a staple of the repertory and can't be rated with any less than A+. It is available on Amazon.com: http://www.amazon.com/Puccini-Tosca-...a+maria+callas

      Overall: A+
      Most of Callas EMI catalog is mono up until @1960 but under studio recording conditions making mono sound quite good even today. This Tosca was 3rd studio recording project for EMI as I recall......

      There are also a few important live Callas EMI label performances but you can often find better sound on other labels for these
    1. Schigolch's Avatar
      Schigolch -


      Bruno Bartoletti. - 1976

      Floria Tosca - Raina Kabaivanska
      Scarpia - Sherill Milnes
      Mario Cavaradossi - Plácido Domingo

      New Philharmonia Orchestra
      Studio


      The audio and the image were recorded separately. While the film was shot in location in Rome, the audio recording sessions were doing first, in a London studio. The blending of both music and film works reasonably well, since the introduction with Angelotti running thru the streets of Rome, approaching Sant'Andrea della Valle.

      Raina Kabaivanska is a wonderful Tosca. She is convincing in the love duets with Domingo, in her confrontation with Milnes in the Second Act, and also singing "Vissi d'arte". She is also a good actress and a beautiful woman, that can be a credible Tosca outside of an Opera stage. Domingo was in his best voice during the late 1970s, and he is a great Cavaradossi, a role that was very well adapted to his strenghts as a singer. His "Recondita Armonia" is especially good. Milnes is at times too much the Hollywood villain, but he is certainly imposing as Scarpia. The orchestra under Bartoletti is providing all the nuances of the score, and guiding us by the unerring hand of Puccini from beginning to end of the drama.

      Overall: B+


      We are fortunate to be able to watch this Tosca complete in youtube:



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