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I must add that the Alice and the Meg also are a feast to the eyes. Maybe because of the connection with the film it is not a stage performance and the soundtrack was recorded on studio , Solti really found more sense in his conducting and the Vienna Philharmonic provides all the lightness he lacked in his other recordings.

Of course, it is no Toscanini or Bernstein, but it has the necessary sense of comedy and is beautifully played.

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The French baritone has every necessary element to produce a perfect performance in the title role - more than that - he shows a richness of characterization that could only have been formed with experience. His acting is exceptional - his Falstaff is primarily concerned about his rank.

However, the more dignified he shows himself, the funnier he looks. No-one else in the cast is in this same level, but everybody sings with contagious freshness. The result of it is really overdone, with poorest stage direction and abounding in artifficiality. It is orchestrally thick and the soloists give him no help at all.

First of all, there is the veteran Paul Plishka as Falstaff - and somehow I have the feeling that this makes any further comment unnecessary. Bruno Pola lacks focus as Ford and is unconvincing as an actor. Moreover, he looks decades younger than his Alice, Mirella Freni, here too much the diva making some concerned expressions here and there.

Vocally, it is a bit frustrating too. At that stage of her career, her still imposing voice lacks lightness completely. Frank Lopardo had lost a bit of the freshness of the C. As usual with the Met, image and recorded sound are excellent. Verdi was a real admirer of Shakespeare's works. He felt highly offended when an unfair critic wrote after the first performance of Macbeth that "he did not understand Shakespeare". I would say that that critic understand neither Shakespeare nor Verdi. The first setting of the English author by Verdi, Macbeth already in featured all the Verdian genius and successfully recreated the strange, violent and agitated atmosphere of the piece.

The orchestra plays a more important role in Macbeth than in the famous trilogy formed by the next operas Rigoletto, Trovatore and Traviata. It is descriptive, intense and colorful; all the mystery in the witches scenes or the whispering of murderers are extremely well described.

This great study on atmosphere singles out Macbeth among all Verdi operas. The revision of the opera in for the Paris Opera contributed to accentuate those qualities when Verdi had already reached his full maturity comparison between the two arias 'La luce langue' and its former version 'Trionfai' is significant enough. It is important to notice that all the commented versions usually display a mix of specific features of the version Macbeth's death for example and the version 'La luce langue', ballet, changes in the witches scenes.

Macbeth is the noble baritone par excellence with acting abilities and mastering both legato and almost parlando styles. Macduff and Banquo are more conventional roles, but need a high level of involvement in spite of the shortness of their parts; we will hear some stars with magnificent voices ending on being unsatisfying out of lack of involvement in those two roles. Macbeth also needs an exciting conductor with striking personality in order to create the suggestive colors the opera requires. Fritz Busch made the first real revival in in Glyndebourne. Practically nothing had been recorded during the first half of XXth century, except for the famous "La Paterna Mano" by Enrico Caruso in Maria Callas will be the first step in the Italian revival.

Her opening night in La Scala in was a famous triumph.


The great Greek soprano had both ease with dramatic coloratura and the needed interpretative genius to perform the malefic queen to perfection. This performance is unforgettable, and we will hardly hear again so many frightening accents in an anthologic entrance scene where the florid writing has real venom nor the childish madness in an hallucinating sleepwalking scene.

Enzo Mascherini had a beautiful voice and enough intuition to be credible next to such a Lady, whereas Italo Tajo was a magnificent Banquo and Gino Penno a very involved and brave Macduff.

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But if this night is a legendary one, it is because Callas' own genius met Victor de Sabata's highly dramatic vision of the work : the orchestra is infernal without being overemphatic, highly dramatic and anomated, almost Toscaninian but with an incredible sense of depicting horror and tragedy. The live sound is far from being perfect, with many distortions and noises, but Callas is unique, and having her Lady conducted by de Sabata is something not to be ignored.

An outstanding night and perhaps the most frightening version of the opera.

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Maria Callas should have sung the role in at the Met, and then should have recorded it with Dimitri Mitropoulos. Alas, she refused to sing the Lady between two Traviatas with the famous explanation to Rudolf Bing that "her voice was not an elevator" , and Mitropoulos died during the rehearsals of Mahler's 3rd Symphony.

Rysanek's Lady fits exactly into what Verdi expected from her Ladies. Rysanek offers a mix of eroticism and violence and has something fascinating in the voice which makes her Lady a great success. Leonard Warren's elegant and truly royal Macbeth is wonderful. Carlo Bergonzi's Macduff is an unmatched reference : the voice is both tender and heroic, and the style, the legato, the class of the interpretation unrivalled. Jerome Hines is an excellent Banquo, much more involved and believable in the role than many of his more famous rivals.

If we will always regret having lost Mitropoulos' view of this work, Erich Leinsdorf's orchestra knows how to create a fascinating strange and mysterious atmosphere. An excellent recording. Thomas Schippers was an exciting conductor, but he was a bit superficial to master such a complicated work.

prelude no 15 from la traviata act 3 full score Manual

Birgit Nilsson's usual coldness is a serious disadvantage because it avoids her incarnation to express all the subtle emotions of the Lady all the opera long; by the way, the voice is not always at her best in the entrance scene and in the toast. Alas, the general quality of the performance and the cuts in the score make this studio recording useless in spite of the quality of Taddei's Macbeth.

Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau's elegant and subtle but not always really idiomatic Macbeth is also the only interest of Gardelli's version. Of course Pavarotti and Ghiaurov are superlative singers, but a Macbeth recording cannot exist without a Lady and without an orchestra. Even Schippers and Leinsdorf have a true personality conducting this opera, but Gardelli has nothing, no ideas, no excitement. Suliotis' Lady is painful : everything is poorly done, poorly sung, dramatically false- it is terrible, as a matter of fact.

In spite of Fischer-Dieskau's highly developed character, it is another useless performance. The live from Vienna is a surprising performance. Christa Ludwig's Lady is somehow fascinating, although far from being idiomatic, and quite unconfortable in coloratura especially the entrance scene. Sherill Milnes is in superlative voice, but he will be more stylish and more dramatically consistent with Muti. Karl Ridderbusch is perhaps not really idiomatic in such an Italian role, but his immense personality and the quality of his tone provide us one of the most interesting Banquo of the discography.

Carlo Cossuta is excellent as MacDuff but has little individuality compared to other more moving Macduff. The sound is excellent for a live performance, but the prelude is missing in the Legato Recordings edition. Macbeth reopened La Scala in for a set of wonderful performances staged by Giorgio Strehler. Singers made huge benefits of working with such a theater genius, and Piero Cappuccilli and Shirley Verret certainly offer here their best recording, especially Cappuccilli. The Italian baritone is probably the best actor of the discography and the voice had wonderfully ease emission at that time.

Shirley Verret is one of our best Ladies, both sensual and demoniac, sung with violence and style. The royal couple here is clearly the best in the discography. Ghiaurov and Domingo sing very well but do not reach the same level of involvement, and Domingo's La Paterna mano is quite indifferent Domingo did not sing the performances at La Scala - it was Ferruccio Tagliavini.

Signora, Che t'accade, No. 18 from "La Traviata", Act 3 (Full Score)

Claudio Abbado conducts a magnificent La Scala orchestra: the score is performedwith subtlety, great elegance and a true sense of phrases and colors winds are outstanding. The high refinement of the orchestra is nevertheless a kind of problem for this opera full of blood, murder, sorcery and violence. We will find more exciting versions, but no other so musically refined and with such a royal couple. For most reviewers, this is a reference recording. Riccardo Muti's recording is first of all a fiery orchestral performance, exciting but without the needed mystery and strange atmospheric quality of the work.

Milnes is a good Macbeth, but does not sing as well as Taddei or Bruson, and has not the dramatic qualities of Fischer-Dieskau or Cappuccilli both being also superior to Milnes in singing quality. Fiorenza Cossoto is also a good singer and makes a triumph of such a difficult enterprise for her voice. Carreras is moving and heroic, but without the class of Bergonzi or the deeply moving expression of Shicoff later. Of course, this recording is quite good indeed and without disadvantages, but has a lack of general personality and interest and is a bit weak on the dramatic side.

Sinopoli's understanding of the dramatic expression Macbeth needs is outstanding. Under his baton the opera gains all the strange colors, violent rhythms or aggressiveness needed to render the mysterious and fantastic features of the opera. This orchestral performance is unforgettable, and, if not truly Verdian, it is one of the most fascinating orchestral performances ever recorded.

Sinopoli found an incredible Lady to share his vision: Mara Zampieri is fascinating by an angelic tone sung with an intense emission and an incredible freedom in the scale and difficulties of the role. This performance fits very well with the royal, elegant and noble Renato Bruson's Macbeth, the best in the discography regarding the singing style and technical: never the manipulation of Macbeth by his wife has been so obvious.

As Neil Shicoff is the most moving Macduff in the discography, and as Robert Lloyd is an excellent Banquo, this recording is clearly, according to me, the most fascinating and interesting one of the discography. If Sinopoli's treatment of the score can be contested, it is however one of the strongest and most individual performance ever recorded. Highly recommended. Riccardo Chailly recorded the opera for Claude d'Anna's film.

LA TRAVIATA - Devia, Filianoti, Bruson - La Scala Tokyo, 2006

But this performance is quite interesting by itself. First, Riccardo Chailly offers almost the same orchestral perfection as in Abbado, with less rich colors, but more dramatic incisiveness and excitement: this is a superb orchestral reading of the work, in the Victor de Sabata's lineage. Shirley Verret has lost some of the vocal ease she had with Abbado, but also gained more dramatic qualities: her Lady has become a classic by the way. Leo Nucci's Macbeth is quite well sung and is quite believable: this is probably one of his best performances on records. Finally, Samuel Ramey and Veriano Luchetti are both excellent singers.

A very good stereophonic modern performance indeed which can be a good choice for people scared by Sinopoli's personality and longing for more dramatic excitement than Abbado could offer. The staging is quite simple, but very effective. Finally, considering that Olivier stressed the fact that Christa Ludwig in my opinion, a wonderfully sophisticated sensuous dark toned Lady Macbeth had some problems with passagework, I should mention that I think she is more accurate in this particular than Rysanek, Nilsson and Souliotis, even offering the trills none of these singers do.

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If one could say which are the main features of this opera, I think those would be - timing and characterization. We have the deformed father who has a kind of weird symbiosis with his libertine boss and who keeps his beautiful daughter completely for him alone and ignorant even about who she is. Instead of bringing the lovely girl up aware of the "dangers" that surround her, he makes her the perfect victim for his "other half", the Duke he even holds the ladder for the kidnappers of his daughter without being conscious of it.

The seduction of Gilda is made in a most rhetorical way. She does not know the name of her own father - but she demands the name of her wooer. He provides her very fast education - he shows her who he really is, he makes her a woman and finally leads her to discover who her father is and, by consequence, who she herself is.

This leads the poor Gilda to cling to her new word even if this means having to die in order not to loose it anymore.