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Donizetti: Pigmalione, L’elisir D’amore / Gatto, Santunione, Antonioli

Release Date: 12/21/2010 
Label:  Myto Records   Catalog #: 241  
Composer:  Gaetano Donizetti
Performer:  Doro AntonioliOrianna SantunioneGiulio FioravantiRosanna Carteri,   ... 
Conductor:  Armando GattoNino Sanzogno
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bergamo Teatro Donizetti OrchestraMilan Teatro alla Scala OrchestraMilan Teatro alla Scala Chorus

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

DONIZETTI Pigmalione Armando Gattto, cond; Doro Antonioli ( Pigmalione ); Orianna Santunione ( Galatea ); Bergamo Donizetti Th O & MYTO CD 00241 (78:04)

& DONIZETTI L’elisir d’amore (Highlights) Read more class="ARIAL12"> Nino Sanzogno, cond; Rosanna Carteri ( Adina ) Giuseppe di Stefano ( Nemorino ); Fernando Corena ( Dulcamara ); Giulio Fioravanti ( Belcore ); Silvana Zanolli ( Gianetta ); La Scala O & Ch

Many years ago I with my associates issued this performance of Pigmalione on VOCE 17 LP. It was apparently the first performance of the work, on October 13, 1960, since no record of one during Donizetti’s lifetime exists. The work was performed on a triple bill with Giacomo Manzoni’s La Sentenza and Arturo Andreoli’s L’Ammiraglio. On the VOCE LP it is coupled with Donizetti’s Miserere.

Pygmalion, King of Cyprus, has renounced women and uses sculpture to create his ideal of feminine beauty. He has become so enamored of his statue of Galathea that he can no longer raise his chisel to it for fear of hurting it. He is tormented and prays to Venus, who brings Galathea to life, and she reciprocates Pygmalion’s love. The work is largely a monologue for the sculptor. There is only a brief ariette for the soprano at the conclusion. Composed in 1816, this was the 18-year-old Donizetti’s first opera.

The only other recording of Pigmalione that I am aware of is in a two-CD Bongiovanni release with Rita and two other works, reviewed by Robert Levine in Fanfare 17:1. In this recording the tenor Doro Antonioli is very good. He has a bright voice and the sound is excellent. Unfortunately the packaging is poor; there are no notes, only a list of tracks. However, the performance certainly deserves a recommendation.

On this disc Pigmalione occupies nine tracks. The bonus L’ e lisir d’amore excerpts occupy 18 tracks. The cover lists only the Pigmalione . One has to look on the back of the box to find out that L’elisir is on the disc. Myto issued the complete recording of this performance in 2004. The performance was reviewed in Opera magazine by Harold Rosenthal, who said, “A wholly delightful performance of a work that is now rivaling the same composer’s Don Pasquale in popularity. The ‘star’ of the evening was Giuseppe di Stefano.” Rosanna Carteri is a fine Adina, and Fernando Corena an excellent Dulcamara; only Giulio Fioravanti as Belcore is not of star quality. The sound is excellent. Again no notes, only a listing of tracks.

The Pigmalione is recommended to all those who have no recording of it, and the L’elisir d’amore, although not complete, contains all of the prominent arias and duets. This issue, despite its poor packaging, is highly recommended.

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Works on This Recording

Il Pigmalione by Gaetano Donizetti
Performer:  Doro Antonioli (Tenor), Orianna Santunione (Soprano)
Conductor:  Armando Gatto
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bergamo Teatro Donizetti Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1816; Italy 
Date of Recording: 10/13/1960 
Venue:  Bergamo, Italy 
L'Elisir d'Amore: Excerpt(s) by Gaetano Donizetti
Performer:  Giulio Fioravanti (Baritone), Rosanna Carteri (Soprano), Fernando Corena (Bass),
Doro Antonioli (Tenor), Giuseppe Di Stefano (Tenor), Silvano Zanoli (Mezzo Soprano)
Conductor:  Nino Sanzogno
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra,  Milan Teatro alla Scala Chorus
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1832; Italy 
Date of Recording: 8/23/1957 
Venue:  Edinburgh 

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