Sutherland provides some breathtaking moments and gives a genuinely dramatic performance, and Bonisolli is in amazing voice, full-bodied, almost baritonal, and yet so brilliant on high.
Despite its chorus of brigands who are musically about as lethal as the pirates of Penzance, and despite a denouement in which the hero out of the sheer goodness of his heart deliberately stabs the heroine, this is an opera that carries much dramatic conviction and boasts a score that teems with energy and invention. It is particularly strong in cabaletta movements, and as they are always a Bonynge speciality too they give the recording an advantage over its Philips rival under Gardelli, who is rather tame by comparison. The recordedRead more sound is also brighter and better in this later version (the Gardelli was recorded in 1974), and orchestra and chorus participate with a keener sense of involvement.
That leaves the solo singing. With Gardelli, Caballé was more or less in her prime, while by 1982 Sutherland's voice had developed a beat and had lost its former fullness and ease on top notes: she still provides some breathtaking moments and gives a genuinely dramatic performance. Manuguerra was also past his best, yet it is still a magnificent voice, and I find Cappuccilli's (Gardelli) more wooden. Ramey sings well here yet hardly convinces in his role of the poor, halfstarved, half-crazy old father; Raimondi (Gardelli), does better. As the reluctant brigand hero, Bergonzi (Gardelli) is, of course, much more elegant than Bonisolli, but this time through I found Bonisolli's performance fascinating. It is an amazing voice, so full-bodied, almost baritonal, and then so brilliant on high. Stylistically he is uneven, but that is not a euphemism for awful: he can be touchingly good in some of the least likely places and gives a sometimes startling bite and intensity to words and declamation.
I masnadieriby Giuseppe Verdi Performer:
Arthur Davies (Tenor),
Matteo Manuguerra (Baritone),
Samuel Ramey (Bass),
Franco Bonisolli (Tenor),
Dame Joan Sutherland (Soprano),
Simone Alaimo (Baritone),
John Harris (Tenor)
Welsh National Opera Chorus,
Welsh National Opera Orchestra
Period: Romantic Written: 1847; Italy Date of Recording: 04/1982 Venue: Kingsway Hall, London Length: 127 Minutes 48 Secs. Language: Italian
Average Customer Review: ( 1 Customer Review )
I MasnadieriJanuary 11, 2013By marie fraser (edmonton, alberta, Alberta)See All My Reviews"Excellent performance by the whole cast. I recommend this recording."Report Abuse
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