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Operatic Duets For Baritone & Bass / Hampson, Ramey


Release Date: 03/29/2011 
Label:  Apex   Catalog #: 4677172   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Domenico CimarosaGaetano DonizettiVincenzo BelliniGiuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Thomas [Baritone Vocal] HampsonSamuel Ramey
Conductor:  Miguel Gómez-Martinez
Number of Discs: 1 
Length: 1 Hours 13 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

The idea is a jolly one and so is the title Mein Zutritt für Tenore' in German, 'Interdit aux Tenors' in French). The programme too has been well devised, for although you or I might have come up with `Suoni la tromba' from I puritani and then have managed to think of Don Carlos and Simon Boccanegra, we probably lack the lateral skills to jump to Don Pasquale and never in a month of Sundays would have produced Marino Faller°. The result is more satisfying than might have been expected: a good mixture of the familiar and the not-so, of seriousness and comedy; and all in excerpts or substantial length, even making it possible to observe the development of form, to the point where, in Simon Boccancgra and Don Carlos, the templet has Read more almost worn away.

The singers adapt pretty well to the changing moods and characters. In the delightful number from Verdi's first comedy, Un glom° di regno, they play off each other with a genuine sense of fun. There is even a musical link (a tenuous one perhaps) with the famous Don Pasquale duet, in which they incorporate some of the time-honoured (and Muti-forbidden) 'business'. Even so, it is difficult to hear a Pasquale in Ramey, and the performance amuses without quite sparkling. The severities of Attila, Fiesco and King Philip come more naturally to this singer, whose voice (as opposed to his own disposition) has always settled most readily into an expression of stern authority. It also has to be said that it is by no means as firm an instrument as it was even when he sang those roles in complete EMI recordings of the first and last of the operas in 1989 and 1992 respectively (5/90 and 5/94). Hampson is of course the younger man, and in several passages of beautifully-toned singing (Boccanegra's 'Del mar sul lido' for instance) it shows. Like Ramey, he is not always well 'cast': in the Attila duet one misses the Italianate vibrancy of Zancanaro, the Ezio of the complete Philips recording (1/91), who also manages to get more of the character's ruthlessness into his voice.

I wish Teldec had managed to get more vital information into its booklet. Extracts are not placed in their Act; the operas are not dated. Over the Don Carlos duet there is avoidable confusion: the writer of the synopsis tells that 'as they leave' the King warns Posa 'of the power of the omnipotent Inquisition', which indeed is true of the end-of-scene as revised in the commonly performed version of 1884, but this happens to be the 1867 version. Orchestral work and recorded sound are supportive, and the collaboration of these popular and distinguished singers makes a happy event: not a deliriously happy one. however.

-- J.B.S., Gramophone Reviewing original release, Teldec 13149
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Works on This Recording

1. Il matrimonio segreto: Se fiato in corpo avate by Domenico Cimarosa
Performer:  Thomas [Baritone Vocal] Hampson (), Samuel Ramey ()
Conductor:  Miguel Gómez-Martinez
Period: Classical 
Written: 1792; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 07/1997 
Venue:  Studio 1, Bayerischer Rundfunk 
Length: 8 Minutes 7 Secs. 
2. Don Pasquale: Cheti, immantinente...Aspetta, cara sposina by Gaetano Donizetti
Performer:  Samuel Ramey (), Thomas [Baritone Vocal] Hampson ()
Conductor:  Miguel Gómez-Martinez
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1843; Italy 
Date of Recording: 07/1997 
Venue:  Studio 1, Bayerischer Rundfunk 
Length: 6 Minutes 59 Secs. 
3. Marino Faliero: Israele, che...Se pur giungi a truidarlo by Gaetano Donizetti
Performer:  Samuel Ramey (), Thomas [Baritone Vocal] Hampson ()
Conductor:  Miguel Gómez-Martinez
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1835; Italy 
Date of Recording: 07/1997 
Venue:  Studio 1, Bayerischer Rundfunk 
Length: 12 Minutes 31 Secs. 
4. I puritani: Suoni la tromba by Vincenzo Bellini
Performer:  Thomas [Baritone Vocal] Hampson (), Samuel Ramey ()
Conductor:  Miguel Gómez-Martinez
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1835; Italy 
Date of Recording: 07/1997 
Venue:  Studio 1, Bayerischer Rundfunk 
Length: 13 Minutes 3 Secs. 
5. Attila: Tardo per gli anni, e tremulo by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Samuel Ramey (), Thomas [Baritone Vocal] Hampson ()
Conductor:  Miguel Gómez-Martinez
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846; Italy 
Date of Recording: 07/1997 
Venue:  Studio 1, Bayerischer Rundfunk 
Length: 8 Minutes 22 Secs. 
6. Don Carlos: Restez! by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Thomas [Baritone Vocal] Hampson (), Samuel Ramey ()
Conductor:  Miguel Gómez-Martinez
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1884 
Date of Recording: 07/1997 
Venue:  Studio 1, Bayerischer Rundfunk 
Length: 10 Minutes 12 Secs. 
7. Simon Boccanegra: Suona ogni labbro il mio nome by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Samuel Ramey (), Thomas [Baritone Vocal] Hampson ()
Conductor:  Miguel Gómez-Martinez
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1857; Italy 
Date of Recording: 07/1997 
Venue:  Studio 1, Bayerischer Rundfunk 
Length: 7 Minutes 19 Secs. 
8. Un giorno di regno: Tutte l'armi se può prendere by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Thomas [Baritone Vocal] Hampson (), Samuel Ramey ()
Conductor:  Miguel Gómez-Martinez
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1840; Italy 
Date of Recording: 07/1997 
Venue:  Studio 1, Bayerischer Rundfunk 
Length: 6 Minutes 33 Secs. 

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