- Lucia di Lammermoor, opera
Bel canto means, literally, beautiful singing, and the operas at the core of the bel canto repertory demand vocal voluptuousness to make their point. Especially today -- when we expect drama to be at least plausibly realistic -- the threadbare plots and stand-and-sing displays of bel canto opera spell doom if the performances aren't stellar. The singing on this recording is about as starry as you can get. Joan Sutherland (aided and abetted by Maria Callas) brought new life to the bel canto masterpieces of Bellini and Donizetti, and she's captured here at her artistic peak. She soars gracefully through the stratospheric passages while giving a fully detailed portrayal of the unlucky character of Lucia, the heroine of Sir Walter Scott's romantic tale, "The Bride of Lammermoor," upon which Donizetti based his opera. Luciano Pavarotti, "King of the High Cs," was still in ascendancy when this recording was first released in 1971, and he sounds magnificent here as a youthful, ardent, and sweet-voiced Edgardo. The two baritone roles, richly sung by Sherrill Milnes and Nicolai Ghiaurov, round out what is surely the finest all-around cast of Lucia on record.
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Donizetti: Lucia di Lammermoor based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
In my view, this is still the recording to beat " although the Sills set comes VERY close" . Sutherland owned this roll and this recording should be a staple in any opera fans collection. She is joined by Pavarotti, Ghiaurov and Milnes, who each give amazing performances of their own, but it is Sutherland who seals the deal with a truly incredible reading of this score. She steals the Act II sextet with a blazing iron-covered-in-velvet E flat in alt and a mad scene that can't be beat. Add this set to your collection immediately.