A masterpiece of Italian dramatic opera, La Gioconda is Amilcare Ponchielli's finest work. Throughout the tragic tale of love, deception and revenge, Ponchielli's score wonderfully weaves together tender intimacy and fierce power as the events unfold. Upon discovering that married woman Laura is having an affair with her former fiancé Enzo, manipulative Barnaba persuades the lovers to elope, with the hope of ensnaring Gioconda -- who Barnada knows is in love with Enzo -- for himself. Gioconda, learning of the planned elopement, sets out to murder her rival but is shocked to discover her mother's rosary around Laura's neck...
The opera boasts a wealth of inspired music, including such famous arias and duets asRead more 'Suicidio!' and 'E un anatema!... L'amo come il fulgor creato' as well as the Dance of the Hours, one of the most popular ballet excerpts in the repertoire and which was even given the Disney treatment in the 1940 film Fantasia.
The recording is taken from Stagione Lirica's 2012 season at the Teatro Verdi in Salerno, Italy. In the title role is acclaimed Chinese soprano Hui He, who has been enthralling audiences all over the world since her debut in 2003. Supporting her are Luciana D'Intino and Carlo Striuli, and the whole ensemble is directed by Yishai Steckler.
- A brand new recording of a "Grand" romantic opera, La Gioconda by Ponchielli, recorded in 2012 at the Teatro Verdi, Salerno (Italy).
- La Gioconda is Ponchielli's finest opera, containing powerful, sweeping romantic arias and ensembles, some of which gained immense popularity. The ballet music Dance of The Hours is considered "Music for the Millions" and features in Disney's famous Fantasia film.
- Excellent cast with the exciting Hui He in the title role, and some of the finest young Italian voices of the moment.
- Booklet contains liner notes, synopsis and biographies.
- Sung texts available at www.brilliantclassics.com. Read less
Works on This Recording
La Giocondaby Amilcare Ponchielli Performer:
Lado Ataneli (Baritone),
Angelo Nardinocchi (Baritone),
Hui He (Soprano),
Francesca Franci (Mezzo Soprano),
Luciana D'Intino (Soprano),
Carlo Striuli (Bass),
Francesco Pittari (Tenor),
Hugh Smith (Tenor)
Salernitana Giuseppe Verdi Philharmonic Orchestra,
Salerno Opera Theater Chorus
Period: Romantic Written: 1876; Italy
Average Customer Review: ( 1 Customer Review )
Much promiseOctober 15, 2014By J. Tatnall (West Grove, PA)See All My Reviews"LA Gioconda is a hard opera to bring off. It requires virtuoso singing and playing from a fine cast and company. The chorus and orchestra are exposed enough to highlight any weakness. And heaven help the unprepared soloist. This score is a workout for all involved. It also takes a very practiced conductor to pace it. Too slow and it really drags; too fast and the singers players and dancers can't keep up. Too heavy a hand and you are in mud and quicksand. Few of the recordings issued have been spot on, and several have seemed mistakes indeed. Aficionados will argue between the Callas (first recording on Cetra) and the Milanov (RCA/Decca). This latest recording has first and foremost a conductor who shapes and paces the score well. Too bad he allows cuts. The soloists all have their moments of "finding the pitch" but at least have appropriate sized voices. The Laura, Luciana D'Intino, is especially fine. The live recording is well recorded and balanced. It's a B- at best in a roster of recordings that doesn't contain an A+ or even an A."Report Abuse