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Verdi / Placido Domingo


Release Date: 08/27/2013 
Label:  Sony   Catalog #: 373312   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community OrchestraValencia Regional Government Choir
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews



VERDI Macbeth: Pietà, rispetto, amore. Rigoletto : Pari siamo; Cortigiani. Un ballo in maschera: Eri tu. La traviata: Di Provenza. Simon Boccanegra: Plebe! Patrizi!; Popolo dalla feroce storia; Ecco la spade. Ernani: È quest oil loco?; Oh, de’ verd’anni miei. Il trovatore: Read more class="ARIAL12i">Il balen; Qual suono! Oh ciel!....Per me, ora fatale. Don Carlo: Son io, mio Carlo; Per me giunto; Che parli tu di morte? La forza del destino: Urna fatale del mio destino; Egli è salvo Plácido Domingo (bar); Pablo Heras-Casado, cond; Valencia Comunitat O; Valencia Generalitat Ch SONY 88883733122 (70:09 Text and Translation)


To save Fanfare headnote space, I omitted the recitatives that precede the arias, but I should point out that all are included on the disc. Additionally, where other singers are required, they are provided, and at a very high level. They are unfamiliar names, clearly of Spanish origin, so I would guess they are members of the Valencia theater where this recording was made, in 2012. The date is important, because it tells us that Domingo was 71, and that assumes that his publicized 1941 birth date is accurate. There have been some in the music world who have assumed he was older than he claims.


This is not an easy disc to review. On the one hand, Domingo is not a baritone and the color of his voice is simply wrong for much of this music. He does have the notes, and sounds comfortable in the range, but the dark color and tonal richness of a true Verdi baritone is simply not present. I know that he began (briefly) as a baritone, but there is a reason he switched to tenor. However, there are some offsetting rewards here as well.


First, one cannot be anything other than awed by the condition of the voice at age 71 (I’ll accept his “official” 1941 birthdate because it would be even more absurd for this to be the singing of anyone older). Yes, a certain tonal dryness is present and there is the beginning of what will likely turn into a true wobble, but the actual sound of the voice is stunning. Its basic tonal quality remains intact, and I would imagine that fans of the (former) tenor would want this simply as a document of another stage in a remarkable career.


Domingo understands this music, as he should: He’s been singing Verdi for more than half a century (he made his operatic stage debut as Alfredo in 1961). As if that weren’t enough, he has also been conducting it. While never a complex actor with the range of subtle inflections of a Gobbi, he does invest dramatic meaning into everything he sings here; he is at his best in the Simon Boccanegra scenes, perhaps because that’s the baritone role he has sung most frequently in its entirety.


I cannot recommend this disc to anyone looking for a good representative collection of Verdi baritone arias. There are far too many natural Verdi baritones whose basic timbre is more appropriate, and the signs of age that are present are a distraction, even if they are surprisingly few. On the other hand, fans of Domingo and anyone interested in the remarkable career of one of the great singers of the second half of the 20th century, as well as of the opening decade of the 21st, will value this as a representation of that career as it draws to a close.


Sony’s production values are strong here. They engaged a terrific conductor whose international reputation is growing quickly (and deservedly), the Valencia forces acquit themselves well, all of the singers who are heard with Domingo are excellent, and the accompanying notes are very good. In addition, we get text and translation, not always a given these days with recital discs. The recorded sound is a bit swimmy; I would prefer a bit less reverb. But the ear adjusts quickly.


FANFARE: Henry Fogel
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Works on This Recording

1.
Un ballo in maschera: Alzati! Là tuo figlio by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1859; Italy 
2.
Simon Boccanegra: Plebe! Patrizii! by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra,  Valencia Regional Government Choir
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1857; Italy 
3.
Rigoletto: Pari siamo by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1851; Italy 
4.
Rigoletto: Cortigiani, vil razza dannata by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1851; Italy 
5.
Macbeth: Perfidi! All'anglo...Pietà, rispetto, amore by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1847/1865; Italy 
6.
La traviata: Di Provenza il mar by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1853; Italy 
7.
La forza del destino: Urna fatale del mio destino by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1862/1869; Italy 
8.
La forza del destino: Morir! Tremenda cosa! by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1862/1869; Italy 
9.
La forza del destino: E s'altra prova rinvenir potessi? by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1862; Italy 
10.
Il trovatore: Per me ora fatale by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1853; Italy 
11.
Il trovatore: Il balen del suo sorriso by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1853; Italy 
12.
Ernani: O de' verd' anni miei by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1844; Italy 
13.
Don Carlos: Per me giunto è il dì supremo by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1867/1884; Italy 
14.
Rigoletto: Cortigiani, vil razza dannata by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1851; Italy 
15.
Un ballo in maschera: Eri tu che m'acchiave quell' anima by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1859; Italy 
16.
Simon Boccanegra: Ecco la spada...Sia maledetto by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1857; Italy 
17.
Ernani: È questo il loco?" by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1844; Italy 
18.
Il trovatore: Tutto è deserto by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1853; Italy 
19.
Don Carlos: Son io, mio Carlo by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
20.
Don Carlos: Che parli tu di morte? by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Baritone)
Conductor:  Pablo Heras-Casado
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Valencia Community Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1867/1884; Italy 

Sound Samples

Macbeth, Act IV, Scene and Aria: "Perfidi! All'anglo contro me v'unite! ... Pietà, rispetto, amore" (Macbeth)
Rigoletto, Act I, Scene 3, Scena: "Pari siamo! Io la lingua" (Rigoletto)
Rigoletto, Act II, Scene 2, Aria: "Sì, la mia figlia! ... Cortigiani, vil razza dannata" (Rigoletto)
Un ballo in maschera, Act III, Scene 1, Aria: "Alzati! Là tuo figlio ... Eri tu che macciavi quell'anima" (Renato)
La traviata, Act II, Scene 1, Aria: "Di Provenza il mar, il suol" (Germont)
Simon Boccanegra, Act I, Scene 2: "Abbasso le spade! ... Plebe! Patrizi! Popolo dalla feroce storia!" (Amelia, Gabriele, Boccanegra, Fiesco, coro, Paolo, Pietro)
Simon Boccanegra, Act I, Scene 2: "Ecco la spada" (Gabriele, Boccanegra, Paolo, coro, Amelia, Pietro, Fiesco)
Ernani, Act III, Scene and Cavatina: "È questo il loco?" (Carlo V)
Ernani, Act III, Scene and Cavatina: "Oh, de' verd'anni miei" (Carlo V)
Il trovatore, Part II, Scene 2, Scena ed Aria: "Tutto è deserto" (Conte di Luna, Ferrando)
Il trovatore, Part II, Scene 2, Scena ed Aria: "Il balen del suo sorriso" (Conte di Luna)
Il trovatore, Part II, Scene 2, Scena ed Aria: "Qual suono! Oh ciel! ... Per me, ora fatale" (Conte di Luna, Ferrando, coro)
Don Carlo, Act IV, Scene 2: "Son io, mio Carlo" (Rodrigo, Don Carlo)
Don Carlo, Act IV, Scene 2: "Per me giunto è il dì supremo" (Rodrigo)
Don Carlo, Act IV, Scene 2: "Che parli tu di morte?" (Don Carlo, Rodrigo)
La forza del destino, Act III, Scene 2, Scena ed Aria: "Morir! Tremenda cosa" (Carlo)
La forza del destino, Act III, Scene 2, Scena ed Aria: "Urna fatale del mio destino" (Carlo)
La forza del destino, Act III, Scene 2, Scena ed Aria: "E s'altra prova rinvenir potessi? ... Egli è salvo! Gioia immensa" (Carlo, chirurgo)

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  3 Customer Reviews )
 Domingo November 9, 2013 By marie fraser (edmonton, alberta, Alberta) See All My Reviews "Very disappointed,I'm wondering why Domingo wants to sing bariton when he had such a wonderful career as a tenor." Report Abuse
 He didn't make the grade October 22, 2013 By Robert B BELFORD (Crookwell, New South Wales) See All My Reviews "I have every respect for Placido Domingo - as a tenor. In fact, in my opinion, he rates more highly than most. I say most because I should not include Jussi Bjorling along with all the others. He stands supreme. Domingo is not a baritone and in the lower register, his voice is not robust enough to attempt the standard arias for baritones. I could not help but compare his rendition of "Plebe!Patrizi!Popolo" from Simon Boccanegra with that of Lawrence Tibbett, and it sounded like a pale shadow without force or authority. Even his upper register did not match those of the true baritones. This compact disc is worth having as a curiosity but I can honestly say I did not find it enjoyable" Report Abuse
 Domingo Verdi September 26, 2013 By Thomas D'Elia (Forest Hills, NY) See All My Reviews "Excellent selection of baritone arias, but voice is not entirely baritonal. His tenor sound slips through. Domingo is a great Verdi tenor, but this is a very satisfying disc. What can one say about the wonderful music of Verdi, especially as interpreted by Placido Domingo, whether as tenor or baritone." Report Abuse
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