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Complete Collections - The Verdi Recordings - Toscanini


Release Date: 01/10/2006 
Label:  Rca Victor Red Seal Catalog #: 67893   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Arthur NewmanJan PeercePaul DennisJohn Garris,   ... 
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  NBC Symphony ChorusNBC Symphony OrchestraRobert Shaw Chorale,   ... 
Number of Discs: 12 
Recorded in: Mono 
Length: 13 Hours 6 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews



VERDI (complete Toscanini recordings) La traviata. 1 Un ballo in maschera. 2 Aida. 3 Otello. 4 Falstaff. 5 Requiem. 6 Lombardi: Qual volutta trascorrere. 7 Rigoletto: Read more class="ARIAL12">Act III. 8 Nabucco: Va, pensiero. 9 Luisa Miller: Overture; Quando le sere al placido. 10 I vespri siciliani: Overture. La forza del destino: Overture. Hymn of the Nations. 11 Te Deum 12 ? Arturo Toscanini, cond; NBC SO; 4 Robert Merrill (bar); 1,2 Jan Peerce (ten); 1,2,7,8,10,11 Licia Albanese (sop); 1 Herva Nelli (sop); 2,3,4,5,6 Teresa Stich-Randall; 3,5 Giuseppe Valdengo (bar); 3,4,5 Richard Tucker (ten); 3 Claramae Turner (mez); 2 Eva Gustavson (mez); 3 Ramon Vinay (ten); 4 Nan Merriman (mez); 4,5,8 Frank Guarrera (bar); 5 Cesare Siepi (bs); 6 Giuseppe Di Stefano (ten); 6 Fedora Barbieri (mez); 6 Vivian Della Chiesa (sop); 7 Zinka Milanov (sop); 8 Leonard Warren (bar); 8 Nicola Moscono (bs); 8 NBC Ch; 1,4 Robert Shaw Chorale; 2,3,5,6,12 All City High School Ch; 8 Westminster Ch; 9,11 Other soloists ? RCA 67893, mono (12 CDs: 786:11)


This set, ?The Verdi Recordings,? another in RCA?s ?Complete Collections? series, brings together in a small box hardly more than an inch wide, all of the Verdi recordings that Toscanini made with the NBC symphony. With the exception of the Requiem, Falstaff, and Te Deum, none of the material has been available since the deletion of most of the 82 CDs in RCA?s ?Toscanini Collection,? initially issued roughly 15 years ago. Restored to circulation here are four complete-opera broadcasts? La traviata (1946), Otello (1947), Aida (1949) and Un ballo in maschera (1954), as well as the last act of Rigoletto (1944). The three productions recorded between 1946 and 1949 took place in studio 8H, that of Ballo in Carnegie Hall. The Rigoletto fragment was part of a war-bond concert given in New York?s Madison Square Garden in 1944. Also restored to circulation are superb accounts of three overtures, that of La forza del destino , recorded in 1952 in Carnegie Hall, boasting especially fine sound. And not to be overlooked is the briefest item here?the gorgeous ?Va, pensiero? from Nabucco , rendered with a touchingly flowing but unhurried tempo unmatched in any other performance I know.


In some respects, this is a bare-bones production. Neither texts nor plot summaries are provided, and the all-too-brief and general introductory essay does not, as it should have, deal with Toscanini?s advocacy of Verdi. But the performances are all there and are exceptionally economical in terms of cost and space requirements. So far as the operas are concerned, one may always question whether or not what is offered typifies Toscanini?s work in the theater. Staging, after all, imposes a number of demands that may well affect, among other things, tempo. Then, too, not all the singers are ideal. But there is enough of value to make each of the four operas that have been absent from the catalog worth hearing. My favorite among them is the Otello, a performance generally acknowledged (along with the Requiem) to be one of the prizes of the conductor?s discography. (Note, incidentally, it is also available separately in a Guild set that preserved the broadcasts exactly as aired, with some glaring ensemble errors that RCA corrected with rehearsal material. The Guild set, incidentally, also includes a third CD offering some of the rehearsals.)


In so far as sound is concerned, in the many spot checks I made, no difference from previous CD reissues was apparent. Wisely, this Falstaff offers the same transfer used for the second (presumably still available) CD edition issued six years ago in sound that offers greater presence and definition than that of the original CD release of 1990. Bare bones notwithstanding, then, this is a formidable set, exceptionally worthy for historical, musical, and economic reasons.


FANFARE: Mortimer H. Frank
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Works on This Recording

1.
La traviata by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Arthur Newman (Bass), Jan Peerce (Tenor), Paul Dennis (Bass),
John Garris (Tenor), George Cehanovsky (Baritone), Johanne Morland (Soprano),
Licia Albanese (Soprano), Maxine Stellman (Mezzo Soprano), Robert Merrill (Baritone)
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  NBC Symphony Chorus,  NBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1853; Italy 
Venue:  Live  NBC Studio 8-H, New York City 
Length: 103 Minutes 6 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
Notes: NBC Studio 8-H, New York City (12/01/1946 - 12/08/1946) 
2.
Un ballo in maschera by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Nicola Moscona (Bass), Claramae Turner (Mezzo Soprano), George Cehanovsky (Baritone),
Virginia Haskins (Soprano), Robert Merrill (Baritone), Herva Nelli (Soprano),
Jan Peerce (Tenor), John Carmen Rossi (Tenor), Norman Scott (Bass)
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Robert Shaw Chorale,  NBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1859; Italy 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 121 Minutes 44 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
Notes: Carnegie Hall, New York City (01/17/1954 - 01/24/1954) 
3.
Aida by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Teresa Stich-Randall (Soprano), Herva Nelli (Soprano), Eva Gustavson (Mezzo Soprano),
Richard Tucker (Tenor), Virginio Assandri (Tenor), Norman Scott (Bass),
Giuseppe Valdengo (Baritone), Dennis Harbour (Bass)
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Robert Shaw Chorale,  NBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1871; Italy 
Venue:  Live  NBC Studio 8-H, New York City 
Length: 135 Minutes 45 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
Notes: NBC Studio 8-H, New York City (03/26/1949 - 04/02/1949) 
4.
Otello by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Virginio Assandri (Tenor), Giuseppe Valdengo (Baritone), Ramon Vinay (Tenor),
Herva Nelli (Soprano), Nan Merriman (Mezzo Soprano), Arthur Newman (Bass),
Nicola Moscona (Bass), Leslie Chabay (Tenor)
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  NBC Symphony Chorus,  NBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1887; Italy 
Length: 124 Minutes 23 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
Notes: NBC Studio 8-H, New York City (12/04/1947 - 12/12/1947); NBC Studio 8-H, New York City (12/06/1947 - 12/13/1947) 
5.
Falstaff by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  John Carmen Rossi (Tenor), Teresa Stich-Randall (Soprano), Herva Nelli (Soprano),
Nan Merriman (Mezzo Soprano), Giuseppe Valdengo (Baritone), Norman Scott (Bass),
Gabor Carelli (Tenor), Antonio Madasi (Tenor), Cloe Elmo (Mezzo Soprano),
Frank Guarrera (Baritone)
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Robert Shaw Chorale,  NBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1893; Italy 
Venue:  Live  NBC Studio 8-H, New York City 
Length: 116 Minutes 36 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
Notes: NBC Studio 8-H, New York City (04/01/1950 - 04/08/1950) 
6.
Requiem Mass by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Giuseppe Di Stefano (Tenor), Herva Nelli (Soprano), Fedora Barbieri (Mezzo Soprano),
Cesare Siepi (Bass)
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Robert Shaw Chorale,  NBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1874; Italy 
Date of Recording: 01/27/1951 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City, USA 
Length: 77 Minutes 36 Secs. 
Notes: This selection is sung in Greek and Latin. 
7.
I lombardi: Qual voluttà trascorrere by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Mischa Mischakoff (Violin), Jan Peerce (Tenor), Vivian Della Chiesa (Soprano),
Nicola Moscona (Baritone)
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  NBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1843; Italy 
Date of Recording: 01/31/1943 
Venue:  Live  NBC Studio 8-H, New York City 
Length: 13 Minutes 39 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
Notes: This selection begins with an orchestral prelude, followed by "Qui posa il fianco!" 
8.
Rigoletto: Act 3 by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Nicola Moscona (Bass), Jan Peerce (Tenor), Nan Merriman (Mezzo Soprano),
Leonard Warren (Baritone), Zinka Milanov (Soprano)
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  NBC Symphony Orchestra,  All City High School Chorus
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1851; Italy 
Date of Recording: 05/25/1944 
Venue:  Live  Madison Square Garden, New York City 
Length: 29 Minutes 53 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
9.
Nabucco: Va, pensiero by Giuseppe Verdi
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Westminster Choir,  NBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1842; Italy 
Date of Recording: 01/31/1943 
Venue:  Live  NBC Studio 8-H, New York City 
Length: 4 Minutes 59 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
10.
Luisa Miller: Overture by Giuseppe Verdi
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  NBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1849; Italy 
Date of Recording: 07/25/1943 
Venue:  Live  NBC Studio 8-H, New York City 
Length: 5 Minutes 17 Secs. 
11.
Luisa Miller: Quando le sere al placido by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Jan Peerce (Tenor)
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  NBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1849; Italy 
Date of Recording: 07/25/1943 
Venue:  Live  NBC Studio 8-H, New York City 
Length: 5 Minutes 19 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
Notes: This selection begins with "Oh! fede negar potassi...." 
12.
I vespri siciliani: Overture by Giuseppe Verdi
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  NBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1855; Italy 
Date of Recording: 01/24/1942 
Venue:  Live  NBC Studio 8-H, New York City 
Length: 8 Minutes 47 Secs. 
13.
La forza del destino: Overture by Giuseppe Verdi
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  NBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1862/1869; Italy 
Date of Recording: 11/10/1952 
Venue:  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 7 Minutes 7 Secs. 
14.
Hymn of the Nations by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Jan Peerce (Tenor)
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Westminster Choir,  NBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1862; Italy 
Venue:  NBC Studio 8-H, New York City 
Length: 15 Minutes 35 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
Notes: NBC Studio 8-H, New York City (12/08/1943 - 12/20/1943) 
15.
Quattro pezzi sacri: Te Deum by Giuseppe Verdi
Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Robert Shaw Chorale,  NBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1895-1896; Italy 
Date of Recording: 01/27/1951 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City, USA 
Length: 16 Minutes 6 Secs. 
Language: Latin 

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