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Thread: What opera have you been listening to, lately?

          
   
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  1. #7591
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    "Ah,non credea mirarti si presto estinto, o fiore." --Bellini, La Sonnambula (also written on his tomb).

  2. #7592
    Opera Lively News Coordinator Top Contributor Member MAuer's Avatar
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    Conductor/orchestra: Gianandrea Gavazzeni, RAI Orchestra and Chorus, Torino
    Cast: José Carreras (Gaston), Katia Ricciarelli (Hélène), Siegmund Nimsgern (Roger), Alessandro Cassis (Count of Toulouse), Licia Falcone (Isaura), Giampaolo Corradi (Raymond), Leonardo Monreale (Papal Legate), Eftimios Michalopoulos (Emir of Ramla), Vinicio Cocchieri (Herald)

    I’m finding Jérusalem, the 1847 French revision of I Lombardi alla prima crociata (1843) to be much more interesting and enjoyable than the last early Verdi opera with which I got acquainted, the patriotic chest-thumping La Battaglia di Legnano. Carreras and Ricciarelli are among my favorite duos, and both are in stellar voice here. I’ve admired Siegmund Nimsgern in a number of roles, and for the most part, he copes well with Roger’s music, though the extreme low notes take his bass-baritone to its limits. Roger is actually written for a bass, and while bass-baritones aren’t unheard of in the part (i.e., Ruggero Raimondi), I would have probably preferred Sam Ramey, who recorded the part’s Italian equivalent. The sound quality is surprisingly good for this budget label. There seems to be only one significant cut in the score, with the 25-minute ballet at the beginning of the third act excised. At some point, I’ll probably want to acquire a recording of I Lombardi just to compare the two versions musically. In terms of the plot, things have been tightened up in the revision, with a couple of characters dropped. The original romantic rivalry is between the two sons of Lord Folco over Viclinda, who married Arvino. A tenor in I Lombardi, Arvino morphs into the baritone Count of Toulouse in Jérusalem, the father of Hèlène, who is engaged to Gaston, Vicomte de Béarn (the tenor hero). There is no equivalent to Viclinda. The Count’s brother, Roger (Pagano in the Urfassung), is romantically interested in her and tries to have his rival killed. In Lombardi, Arvino’s daughter Giselda falls in love with Oronte (tenor), son of the ruler of Antioch, who converts to Christianity for her sake. The ruler of Antioch becomes the Emir of Ramla in the revision, and the character of Oronte is dispensed with. Apparently, no one seems to have realized that the revised plot has Roger with amorous designs on his own niece (Héléne). Oops . . . Oronte dies from his wounds before the end of I Lombardi, but both operas end with the death of the reformed Roger/Pagano, presumably leaving Gaston and Hèlène to live happily ever after in the revision.

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  4. #7593
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    After my first experience of this opera (the DVD of same performance)
    this poorly rated CD set is sounding quite wonderful to me!
    "Ah,non credea mirarti si presto estinto, o fiore." --Bellini, La Sonnambula (also written on his tomb).

  5. #7594
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Florestan View Post
    After my first experience of this opera (the DVD of same performance)
    this poorly rated CD set is sounding quite wonderful to me!
    I'm just delighted that you love the opera!
    Natalie

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  7. #7595
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    I'm just delighted that you love the opera!
    I think it has risen to the top right along with Martha, Fidelio and a few select others.
    "Ah,non credea mirarti si presto estinto, o fiore." --Bellini, La Sonnambula (also written on his tomb).

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  9. #7596
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    Haven't listened to this in a long while.
    It is a very engaging opera that you will not lose interest in.

    "Ah,non credea mirarti si presto estinto, o fiore." --Bellini, La Sonnambula (also written on his tomb).

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  11. #7597
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    It's pretty good actually. And it has all the scenes from both 1869 adn 1872 versions:

    "Ah,non credea mirarti si presto estinto, o fiore." --Bellini, La Sonnambula (also written on his tomb).

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  13. #7598
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Monteverdi: L'Orfeo
    Monica Piccinini, Anna Simboli (soprano), Sara Mingardo (contralto), Furio Zanasi, Luca Dordoli (tenor) & Sergio Foresti, Antonio Abete (bass); Concerto Italiano, Rinaldo Alessandrini

    Natalie

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  15. #7599
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    I listened to an early Verdi in full today. Not always able listen to a whole opera in one day so it's enjoyable when I can!
    very tuneful and well recorded with Caballe, Milnes and Domingo (who I think is one of my favorite opera singers now, though still a bit behind Bergonzi)


    Verdi: Giovanni D'arco

    After that, I listened to the first of four discs of a dramatic Rossini opera. I've only heard it once before, but it's wonderful!

    Rossini: Guillaume Tell

  16. #7600
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Guillaume Tell is absolutely one of my favourite operas!
    Natalie

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  18. #7601
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    Guillaume Tell is absolutely one of my favourite operas!
    That is one I was meaning to check out for a long time and I bought a DVD, the one with Florez, about 6 months ago.
    "Ah,non credea mirarti si presto estinto, o fiore." --Bellini, La Sonnambula (also written on his tomb).

  19. #7602
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    "Ah,non credea mirarti si presto estinto, o fiore." --Bellini, La Sonnambula (also written on his tomb).

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  21. #7603
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    Guillaume Tell is absolutely one of my favourite operas!
    Yay! how cool It's in my Rossini top 3, along with L'Italiana in Algers and La Donna Del Lago. I actually found myself dancing in the kitchen during Act III, first time an opera ever had me dancing!

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Florestan View Post
    That is one I was meaning to check out for a long time and I bought a DVD, the one with Florez, about 6 months ago.
    Have you watched it yet?

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  23. #7604
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    "Ah,non credea mirarti si presto estinto, o fiore." --Bellini, La Sonnambula (also written on his tomb).

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  25. #7605
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    From the depths of my unlistened-to-pile:

    Purcell: Dido & Aeneas

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