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The Gold & Silver Gala / Domingo, Alagna, Croft, Et Al


Release Date: 05/07/2007 
Label:  Emi Classics   Catalog #: 56337   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Franz LehárJules MassenetGiuseppe VerdiCharles Gounod,   ... 
Performer:  Roberto AlagnaAngela GheorghiuLeontina VaduvaGalina Gorchakova,   ... 
Conductor:  Asher Fisch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 11 Mins. 

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This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews

“Did you see it?” everybody said, after the Gala concert had been shown on television. No, I did not, but was told repeatedly how Domingo stood head and shoulders above “the new tenor”. Hearing it now, and not seeing, I don’t quite get that impression though it is true that, if one felt like taking up the terms of the title, Alagna might be heard as singing silver to Domingo’s gold. What did strike me was that it was a rather generous and (presumably) friendly action for the two of them to share a platform in this way. It was not comparable to “The Three Tenors”, who are more or less contemporaries. Here was a veteran of masterly stature (one hesitates to say an Old Master) in whose shadow the younger man might have seemed callow however Read more well he had sung; and the reverse of that could have brought forth the exciting newcomer in his prime outdistancing the veteran however well he had sung. In the event, or, rather, in the event as heard here, the honours are more even – partly because Alagna is not singing at his best, and Domingo (once the aria from Le Cid is over) does not give himself the best to sing.

Le Cid presents the Domingo we want to hear, warm and noble in timbre as in feeling. Thereafter he sings music for a lyric tenor and for a baritone. And it is here, rather than with regard to age, that the dreaded word ‘considering’ comes into play, as in “he does very well considering”. He is not, and probably never was, a natural Nemorino; nor is he tonally and stylistically suited to Mozart’s Don Giovanni. Had he given us “Rachel, quand du Seigneur”, that might have been the gem of the evening; instead, it goes to Alagna, who is not ready for it. Better, though still not all it might be, is Alagna’s part in the duet from Carmen, in which the treat (and the true vocal gold of the gala) is the flawless soprano of Angela Gheorghiu.

Of the other sopranos, Vaduva sings with spirit, and Villarroel with an intriguing, rather sultry vocal character that is not really that of Suzel in L’amico Fritz. Dwayne Croft sounds very ample in range and volume, and of the singer we most want to hear, Susan Graham, there is simply not enough. The orchestra, who play well throughout under Asher Fisch, respond happily to Domingo’s easygoing baton in the Gold and Silver Waltz. As usual with these occasions, reproduction on disc and film catches only fitfully the pleasure of being there. Even so, one feels a sense of geniality and goodwill, as indeed there should be, both for the gold of Covent Garden’s 50 years since its post-war reopening and for the silver of Domingo’s regular appearances throughout the second half of that period: both of which are matters for rejoicing.

-- Gramophone [8/1997]
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Works on This Recording

1.
Gold und Silber, Op. 79 by Franz Lehár
Performer:  Roberto Alagna (Tenor), Angela Gheorghiu (Soprano), Leontina Vaduva (Soprano),
Galina Gorchakova (Soprano), Samuel Ramey (Bass), Susan Graham (Soprano),
James Morris (Baritone), Jane Eaglen (Soprano), Dwayne Croft (Bass),
Placido Domingo (Tenor)
Conductor:  Asher Fisch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1902; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 12/12/1996 
Venue:  Live  Royal Opera House, London 
2.
Le Cid: O Souverain, ô juge, ô père by Jules Massenet
Performer:  Placido Domingo (Tenor)
Conductor:  Asher Fisch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1885; France 
Date of Recording: 12/12/1996 
Venue:  Live  Royal Opera House, London 
3.
Don Carlos: Dio, che nell' alma infondere by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Dwayne Croft (Baritone), Placido Domingo (Tenor)
Conductor:  Asher Fisch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1867/1884; Italy 
Date of Recording: 12/12/1996 
Venue:  Live  Royal Opera House, London 
4.
Faust: Avant de quitter ces lieux by Charles Gounod
Performer:  Dwayne Croft (Baritone)
Conductor:  Asher Fisch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1859; France 
Date of Recording: 12/12/1996 
Venue:  Live  Royal Opera House, London 
5.
Carmen: Parle-moi de ma mère by Georges Bizet
Performer:  Roberto Alagna (Tenor), Angela Gheorghiu (Soprano)
Conductor:  Asher Fisch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1873-1874; France 
Date of Recording: 12/12/1996 
Venue:  Live  Royal Opera House, London 
Notes: Composition written: France (1873 - 1874). 
6.
Don Giovanni, K 527: Là ci darem la mano by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer:  Susan Graham (Soprano), Placido Domingo (Tenor)
Conductor:  Asher Fisch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1787 
Date of Recording: 12/12/1996 
Venue:  Live  Royal Opera House, London 
7.
Bartered Bride, B 143/T 93: Dance of the Comedians by Bedrich Smetana
Conductor:  Asher Fisch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1863/1870; Bohemia 
Date of Recording: 12/12/1996 
Venue:  Live  Royal Opera House, London 
8.
Don Pasquale: Quel guardo il cavaliere...So anch'io la virtù by Gaetano Donizetti
Performer:  Leontina Vaduva (Soprano)
Conductor:  Asher Fisch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1843; Italy 
Date of Recording: 12/12/1996 
Venue:  Live  Royal Opera House, London 
9.
L'Amico Fritz: Suzel, buon dì "Cherry Duet" by Pietro Mascagni
Performer:  Leontina Vaduva (Soprano), Placido Domingo (Tenor)
Conductor:  Asher Fisch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1891; Italy 
Date of Recording: 12/12/1996 
Venue:  Live  Royal Opera House, London 
10.
La juive: Rachel, quand du Seigneur by Jacques Halévy
Performer:  Roberto Alagna (Tenor)
Conductor:  Asher Fisch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1835; Paris, France 
Date of Recording: 12/12/1996 
Venue:  Live  Royal Opera House, London 
11.
Valurile Dunari: Muzica by Teodor Grigoriu
Performer:  Angela Gheorghiu (Soprano)
Conductor:  Asher Fisch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Date of Recording: 12/12/1996 
Venue:  Live  Royal Opera House, London 
12.
Tu ca nun chiagne by Ernesto De Curtis
Performer:  Roberto Alagna (Tenor)
Conductor:  Asher Fisch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: Italy 
Date of Recording: 12/12/1996 
Venue:  Live  Royal Opera House, London 
Notes: Arranged: Bertrand de Billy 
13.
L'Elisir d'Amore: Duet(s) by Gaetano Donizetti
Performer:  Leontina Vaduva (Soprano), Placido Domingo (Tenor)
Conductor:  Asher Fisch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1832; Italy 
Date of Recording: 12/12/1996 
Venue:  Live  Royal Opera House, London 
14.
Carmen: Act 1 Prelude "Les toréadors" by Georges Bizet
Conductor:  Asher Fisch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1873-1874; France 
Date of Recording: 12/12/1996 
Venue:  Live  Royal Opera House, London 

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