Live at Lyric Opera of Chicago - 1956 [Decca]

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Live at Lyric Opera of Chicago - 1956 [Decca]

Post by Lance » Fri Oct 13, 2017 9:17 pm

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Decca Eloquence 482 7518, 57:11, ADD

VERDI: La forza del destino: Overture (Sinfonia)*
SAINT-SAËNS Samson et Dalila: S’apre per te il mio cor
Giulietta Simionato
TCHAIKOVSKY: Eugene Onegin: Tatyana’s Letter Scene
Renata Tebaldi
MASCAGNI: Cavalleria rusticana: Voi lo sapete
Giulietta Simionato
MOZART: Le nozze di Figaro: Voi che sapete
Giulietta Simionato
GIORDANO: Andrea Chénier: Nemico della patria
Ettore Bastianini
BOÏTO: Mefistofele: L’altra note in fondo al mare
Renata Tebaldi
PONCHIELLI: La Gioconda: E’ un anatema … L’amo come il fulgor
Renata Tebaldi & Giulietta Simionato
GIORDANO: Andrea Chénier: Vicino a te
Renata Tebaldi & Richard Tucker
Orchestra of the Lyric Opera of Chicago
Sir Georg Solti
*FIRST INTERNATIONAL RELEASE ON DECCA CD

Everybody who loves voices seems to be jumping on the bandwagon to get this live recording from November 10, 1956. Several suppliers have it on back order. Who wouldn't want this one: Giulietta Simionato, Renata Tebaldi, Ettore Bastianini, Richard Tucker, the latter who stood in for an ailing Jussi Bjoerling. The concert, from the liner notes, was put together rather quickly.

Live mono recordings could often be very good. The creamy voice of Tebaldi is not quite so creamy here. Indeed, for my ears, the only one who fares fairly well with the way this was recorded is the fabulous Giulietta Simionto. This is one of those recordings that might very well hurt your ears leaving your tone controls where they are normally set. The high end is unusually high. Things are helped somewhat with tone controls in reducing the treble setting. On occasion one hears members of the Lyric Opera of Chicago Orchestra noticeably out-of-tune. Given what we have for technical equipment today, this recording could have used some careful work in equalization. We all have live opera recordings that contain blemishes of one sort or another. However, given the artists, the repertoire, the duets (especially the Tebaldi/Tucker, which was not issued previously on the original LP or earlier CD due to contractual reasons), it, of course brings down the house, we are more willing to accept things as we find them.

Still, a line-up like this, you will want to have this disc at your fingertips.

Insofar as the inclusion of Verdi's overture to La forza del destino under Solti, it might better have been left off this recording. From the beginning, one is wondering exactly where to set the volume control.
Lance G. Hill
Editor-in-Chief
______________________________________________________

When she started to play, Mr. Steinway came down and personally
rubbed his name off the piano. [Speaking about pianist &*$#@+#]

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