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ALFANO, William Johns, Olivia Stapp, Ezio Di Cesare, Orchestra Sinfonica della RAI di Torino, Maurizio Arena

Cyrano De Bergerac

Cyrano De Bergerac image
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  • Bonus track:
  • Puccini - La Faniciulla del West
  • Minnie - Olivia Stapp
  • Dick Johnson - GianFranco Cecchele
  • Nick - Angelo Marchiandi
  • 1982
  • William Johns - tenor
  • Olivia Stapp - soprano
  • Ezio Di Cesare - tenor
  • Orchestra Sinfonica della RAI di Torino - orchestra
  • Maurizio Arena - conductor

Produkt w tej chwili niedostępny.

G.D. 4.0 out of 5 starsA very fine work in a generally very fine performance October 20, 2009 There has been a rather sudden resurgence of interest in Alfano's music the last couple of years, with (at least) three operas available (two of them, including Cyrano, in alternative performances), both symphonies and a smattering of songs and chamber music. But Alfano deserves it, and Cyrano de Bergerac, based on Rostand's play and first performed in 1936, is, if not a masterpiece, a somewhat remarkable work fully deserving at least the occasional outing. It is lushly and richly scored, utilizing the orchestra to the full and the writing for the voices is idiomatic and rather Italian (so the fact that it is sung in French provides an interesting and rather surprising effect in itself). There are few genuine `arias' here, but the music is never boring or reduced to accompaniment to keep the action going. Stylistically, the opera is somewhat hard to place as well - there are certainly touches of verismo and late-romanticism, but also something almost neo-classical (Malipiero is sometimes brought to mind) and impressionistic. There are no lump-in-the-throat big tunes, but much memorable and expertly written material nonetheless. The performances are generally pretty good, although none of the singers are really remarkable. Olivia Stapp is dramatic and spirited although here voice has a tendency to be a little shrill and hard. William Johns exhibits impressive stamina and also provides much fine singing and splendid characterization, although it is not exactly overly beautiful - more suited for Wagnerian drama, perhaps, than tender lyricism. The same goes for the rest of the cast - more than competent throughout, rarely exceptional. I have not heard the alternative performance from CPO (which was highly praised in Gramophone, among other things, a review that suggested a more successfully dramatic approach than we get here), but I don't think anyone going for this version will be disappointed. Unfortunately, there's no libretto - and that is one more reason to go for the CPO one. Sound quality is surprisingly good for this source - the (live) recording dates from 1975 but is ambient and rather clean and well-balanced (absolutely no problem and shouldn't deter anyone who's generally reluctant about historical recordings). In sum then, this is a very recommendable release, perhaps especially given the price-tag, and is very much recommended.