Notes and Editorial Reviews
Roots in zarzuela but with soaring vocal lines that recall Puccini - a remarkable release.
Written in Spain in 1916, Manuel Penella's opera had a successful New York run in the Twenties, and has now been revived to coincide with EXPO '92 in Seville. Teresa Berganza makes a cameo appearance as the gypsy fortuneteller whose palm-reading for the matador Rafael sets the simmering love-triangle of Rafael, Solea and Juanillo - 'the wildcat' — on its explosive course of destruction. Penella's roots in the Spanish operetta form of the zarzuela enabled him to maintain an intrinsic national identity in his writing, while his musical flair for soaring dramatic vocal lines recalls Puccini. Veronica Villaroel is a real find as Soled
- a powerful soprano with a unique grainy quality. Juan Pons revels in his bass-baritone 'wildcat' role with wonderfully consistent sound, and Placido Domingo as Rafael is in shining vocal form. All the supporting roles are of similarly high calibre. Miguel Roa ensures a spirited accompaniment, and remains vocally empathetic throughout. Overall, a remarkable release.
-- Elisse McDougall, BBC Music Magazine
Works on This Recording
El gato montés by Manuel Penella
Lorenzo Jiménez (),
Verónica Villarroel (Soprano),
Juan Pons (Baritone),
Carlos Chausson (Bass Baritone),
Mabel Perelstein (Alto),
Pedro Farrés (Baritone),
Miguel Lopez Galindo (Baritone),
Carlos Alvarez (Bass),
Amalia Barrio (),
Angeles Blancas (Soprano),
Carlos Bergasa (Baritone),
Ricardo Muñiz (Tenor),
Angel Gonzalo (),
Carlos Durán (),
Placido Domingo (Tenor),
Teresa Berganza (Mezzo Soprano)
Madrid Symphony Orchestra,
Escolania de Nuestra Señora del Recuerdo
Period: 20th Century
Written: 1916; Spain
Date of Recording: 12/1991
Venue: Teatro Bulevar, Torrelodones, Madrid
Length: 112 Minutes 8 Secs.
Featured Sound Samples
Act 1: "Soleá, toma esa caña de mansaniya"
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