Notes and Editorial Reviews
My respected colleague Robert Levine couldn’t be more right when stating in the liner notes that this is young Verdi at its best in a truly excellent performance. This 1969 live radio broadcast still belongs to the greatest recordings of this opera ever made.
Gianandrea Gavazzeni leads his orchestra as if the devil himself were on his heels. It’s a fiery and gripping performance, meticulously prepared, and extraordinarily executed. Some of the music has unfortunately been cut (I refer to the aria repeats and some orchestral interludes), which makes this performance about half an hour shorter than usual. However, considering the first-rate level of execution, it’s easy to forgive.
Montserrat Caballé is
in the prime of her career: in the 1960s and 1970s, her voice was one of the most versatile and virtuosic of her time. Her dramatic intensity ranges from frightening pianissimos to spectacular fortissimos. Her Elvira is one of the most memorable ever to be heard on disc. The title role is sung by Bruno Prevedi—a fine artist who regrettably never received the international recognition he deserved. His performance here is absolutely first-class—forceful and sensitive at the same time. Boris Christoff is impressive as de Silva, and Peter Glossop is equally well cast as Don Carlo. The choir sounds powerful and really well rehearsed.
Finding an even better performance of this opera is not easy, if not impossible—since this recording has everything a good performance needs. However, you may still want to try another Opera d’Oro release with Raina Kabaivanska as Elvira and Plácido Domingo in the role of Ernani. Antonino Votto conducts the Scala Orchestra with a sensitive hand.
This Ernani was recorded in excellent sound, with no annoying tape hiss or other disturbing noises.
– Bart Verhaeghe, Fanfare [11/2008] Read less
Works on This Recording
Ernani by Giuseppe Verdi
Peter Glossop (Baritone),
Boris Christoff (Bass),
Montserrat Caballé (Soprano),
Bruno Prevedi (Tenor)
Italian Radio Symphony Orchestra Milan,
Italian Radio Chorus Milan
Written: 1844; Italy
Date of Recording: 1969
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