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Grand Tier - Giordano: Andrea Chenier / Matacic, Tebaldi

Release Date: 06/14/2005 
Label:  Opera D'oro   Catalog #: 7012   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Umberto Giordano
Performer:  Kostas PaskalisHilde KonetzniRenata TebaldiEttore Bastianini,   ... 
Conductor:  Lovro von Matacic
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna State Opera ChorusVienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 2 
Recorded in: Stereo 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

This is the most consistently satisfying Chénier on discs, black or silver. I realize that's saying a great deal, since we have Pavarotti-Caballé-Chailly (very pretty, but lacking the correct vocal weight), Corelli-Stella-Santini (she's somewhat of a wipe-out), Carreras-Marton-Patanè (all below par) and Domingo-Scotto-Levine (the best up to now) to compete with, but trust me, this

Recorded live at the Vienna State Opera in June I960, the sound is pretty good monaural, the cast, down to the smallest role, is both excellent and rich with surprises (Kostas Paskalis sings Fleville, Alois Pernerstorfer sings Mathieu, Renato Ercolani is “Incredible,“ the spy), and all the leads (and secondary parts) are
Read more topnotch. Corelli was at the start of the best period of his career in 1960—he had learned how to sing with subtlety (occasionally) and the voice was in perfect shape. Von Mata?i? doesn't quite give him enough room in the “Improvviso“ but lends great support elsewhere: I still contend that Corelli's voice was precisely what was needed in this role and that no one has come along to take his place. Bright, shiny top, endless breath, rich, baritonal bottom —what a Chénier!

Tebaldi, too, was in splendid form, with the top sounding very secure. Her big third-act aria is taken very slowly and she can handle it. It and the rest of the role are sung with drama, intelligence, and that womanly, lush tone which, sadly, didn't last quite long enough. Ettore Bastianini is the ideal Gerard—angry, lustful, self-hating, rueful—and the true Verdi sound he possessed is all too rare nowadays. Note the cast list above for two nice additions in the roles of the Countess and Madelon—both are welcome. The supporting cast tends to sing with some pretty odd Italian diction, but so what? Von Mata?i? and the Viennese seem to know they're on to something good and they add luster and energy to the proceedings. There are plenty of thrills here, with some of the century's greatest singers at their best.

-- Robert Levine, Fanfare [1/1989]
Reviewing earlier release of this recording, Fonit Cetra 1017
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Works on This Recording

Andrea Chénier by Umberto Giordano
Performer:  Kostas Paskalis (Baritone), Hilde Konetzni (Soprano), Renata Tebaldi (Soprano),
Ettore Bastianini (Baritone), Endre Koréh (Bass), Margarete Sjösted (Mezzo Soprano),
Edmund Hurshell (Baritone), Fritz Sperlbauer (Tenor), Ludwig Welter (Bass),
Alois Pernerstorfer (Bass Baritone), Franco Corelli (Tenor), Renato Ercolani (Tenor),
Elisabeth Höngen (Mezzo Soprano)
Conductor:  Lovro von Matacic
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna State Opera Chorus,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1896; Italy 
Date of Recording: 06/26/1960 
Venue:  Live  Vienna State Opera, Vienna 
Language: Italian 

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