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Verdi: La Forza Del Destino / Muti, Domingo, Freni


Release Date: 10/25/1990 
Label:  Emi Angel Catalog #: 47485   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Mirella FreniGiorgio ZancanaroPlacido DomingoDolora Zajic,   ... 
Conductor:  Riccardo Muti
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Milan Teatro alla Scala OrchestraMilan Teatro alla Scala Chorus
Number of Discs: 3 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 2 Hours 44 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

...Domingo's Don Alvaro is as memorable, in its different way, as Callas's Leonora: a performance which will guarantee the set a lasting importance. His declamation of Alvaro's great cry "Leonora lives, but I find her only when I have killed her brother" is rich in tragic splendour; it is the singing of a man who clearly identifies as closely with this aristocratic Peruvian warrior in whom valour and honour are finely commingled as he does with Otello. Since Domingo recorded the role with Levine [on RCA] he has refined his interpretation a good deal. In the Act 1 sequence in which Alvaro releases Leonora from her promise there is now a more chilling mood and a more biting sense of irony in Alvaro's utterances. (Tucker and Callas Read more are also very fine in these crucial exchanges.) The solo numbers are predictably splendid despite the fact that something like "0 tu che in seno agli angeli" sounds as though it comes from recital record rather than a living, evolving performance.... Domingo's partnership with Zancanaro is a great success, Zancanaro's Carlo—brutal, sullen, earthbound—the ideal foil for Domingo's chivalrous Alvaro. The partnership with Freni is less of a success, mainly because the very translucence of Domingo's tone shows up the roughness in Freni's. Both Tucker and Domingo outshine Mario del Monaco, a fine Alvaro, who is, sadly, mostly too loud, and by Molinari-Pradelli whose tempos seem less unerringly right when del Monaco is centre stage.

...Throughout, Freni is every inch the experienced singer. She will never pass through a scene without touching the sides as Martina Arroyo managed to do in the great confrontation with Padre Guardian° (on Gardelli's EMI set). But she is no longer in prime voice; where Callas was in her early thirties when she recorded Leonora, Freni is now in her early fifties...

...Muti begins the opera rather slowly and ends it rather swiftly. He enjoys the battlefield music and the brutality of the writing for Leonora's off-stage death, and Guardiano's monks come to seem rather a thuggish rabble. But much of the score is expertly and sensitively conducted. Muti is especially responsive to the opera's quasi-Russian elements: the spare beauty of the chorus "Compagni, sostiamo" and the sombre, almost Mussorgskian mood of the chorus of recruits, "Povere madri deserte nel pianto"...

-- Gramophone [2/1987]
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Works on This Recording

1. La forza del destino by Giuseppe Verdi
Performer:  Mirella Freni (Soprano), Giorgio Zancanaro (Baritone), Placido Domingo (Tenor),
Dolora Zajic (Mezzo Soprano), Paul Plishka (Bass), Sesto Bruscantini (Bass),
Giorgio Surjan (Baritone), Francesca Garbi (Mezzo Soprano), Silvestro Sammaritano (Bass),
Ernesto Gavazzi (Tenor), Frank Hadrian (Bass)
Conductor:  Riccardo Muti
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra,  Milan Teatro alla Scala Chorus
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1862/1869; Italy 
Length: 163 Minutes 52 Secs. 
Language: Italian 

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