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Malibran returns to the fold with
REGINE CRESPIN, CHAUVET & ROUX in
Amsterdam 1963 DAMNATION DE FAUST . . .
VANZO as the French DON CARLOS,
plus CORELLI & MAGINI-COLETTI . . .
NOW OFFERING MORE THAN
2200 TITLES on our 50% SALE
This week, for your enjoyment we offer the following:LA DAMNATION DE FAUST (Berlioz), Live Performance, 23 March, 1963, Amsterdam; w.Fournet Cond. Radio Holland S.O. & Chorus; Régine Crespin, Guy Chauvet, Michel Roux & Peter van der Bilt. [With not a single weak link in this magnificent ensemble, the incomparable Jean Fournet gives us a shimmering performance of both power and sensitive delicacy.] (France) 2-Malibran 820. (OP3247)
"Methodical, unflappable (he is said to have seldom raised his voice), and subtle in the ways of the French repertory, Jean Fournet saw his career extend over an extraordinarily long period. After having established himself in his native country, he proved a welcome addition to opera companies in America, where the French style had become something of a lost art. Beyond stage work, he proved, both early and late, a persuasive interpreter of the French symphonic literature. After studies at the Paris Conservatoire, Fournet made his debut in his native city in 1936; two years later, he was engaged by Rouen on a permanent basis. In 1940, he moved to Marseilles and, beginning in 1944, presided over the Paris Opéra-Comique as music director, simultaneously offering instruction in the art of conducting at the Ecole Normale. In the 1950s, he was involved in several recording projects that enhanced his reputation considerably, notably his Fauré REQUIEM and a lightly turned LES PECHEURS DE PERLES. Two further appointments awaited him in Europe before he turned to a regimen of guest conducting: in 1961 he became conductor of the Netherlands Radio Symphony, and from 1968 to 1973, he served as artistic director of the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra. Fournet made his American opera debut with the Chicago Lyric Opera in 1965 directing a double bill consisting of a staged CARMINA BURANA and Ravel's magical L'HEURE ESPAGNOLE, the latter with Teresa Berganza, Alfredo Kraus, and Sesto Bruscantini. The conductor impressed immediately as one who could imprint elegance and respect for French style on his casts. His success led to further assignments, each helping reestablish the French wing in a city that had known great French artists in decades past. Among the productions were LES PECHEURS DE PERLES in 1966, another double bill (LE ROSSIGNOL and OEDIPUS REX) in 1968, WERTHER in 1971, PELLEAS ET MELISANDE in 1972, MANON in 1973, and DON QUICHOTTE in 1974. In 1987, Fournet made his Metropolitan Opera debut conducting a production of SAMSON ET DALILA. In addition to a number of orchestral discs, Fournet recorded the aforementioned LES PECHEURS DE PERLES for Philips with Léopold Simoneau and Pierrette Alarie, still unsurpassed. Fournet's Fauré and Berlioz Requiems are also impressive, likewise his 1973 Chicago MANON with Kraus and Zylis-Gara."
- Erik Eriksson, allmusic.com
“To be sure, one of the remarkable assets of Crespin’s singing was the power and size of the voice. She could compete on even grounds with Nilsson when they sang together in DIE WALKURE, and with Corelli in WERTHER.
But there was much, much more to Crespin than sheer visceral impact. She sang with subtlety, a variety of colors depending on the demands of the music and the dramatic moment, and always with real involvement. Her singing was filled with nuance, with a wide range of dynamic shading, and was always founded on a beautiful glowing tone.”
- Henry Fogel, Program Notes
, Immortal Performances Set [V2547
"French tenor Guy Chauvet was without question a talented singer, and one who filled a pressing need during a time when the grand tradition of the French heroic tenor was in decline. Typical of this singer's work in general, the diction is idiomatic and crystal-clear....Chauvet displays all of the other qualities that are the heart and soul of great French tenor singing - a seamless legato, a masterful application of the mixed voice, and an ideal balance between elegance and passion. It's also quite impressive to hear Chauvet demonstrate an ease and mastery of style and technique in music ranging from the 18th century to verismo. And if all of these attributes inspire comparison to Chauvet's great predecessor, Georges Thill, the singing on this disc justifies such comparisons. We hear some absolutely first-rate French tenor singing. Highly recommended."
- K. M., classicalcdreview, Sept., 2004DON CARLOS, Original French Version, Live Performance, 9 Nov., 1961, w. Charles Bruck; Alain Vanzo, Rene Bianco, Xavier Depraz, Jacques Mars, Germaine Bonnet, Genevieve Macaux, Claudine Collart, Lucien Lovano & Joseph Peyron. (France) 2-Malibran 818. (OP3244)
"...Vanzo combines all the elements of bel canto, whatever the selection. A seamless legato is joined with a technique that produces a beautiful, effortless sound....Vanzo’s voice caresses the music and demonstrates elegance."
- Bob Rose, FANFARE, Nov./Dec., 2005
“Alain Vanzo made his debut at the l’Opéra and the Opéra-Comique in 1957, going on to sing the Duke of Mantua in 1957. He became known and respected as a lyrical tenor and graduated towards a more robust tenor, culminating in his taking on Werther at age 40 and Don José at age 45! By the time he reached the age of 48, on 20 April, 1965, he sang with Montserrat Caballé (her American debut) in a concert performance in Donizetti's LUCREZIA BORGIA at Carnegie Hall. Finally, after his 1976 performances of FAUST in the US, he had become a star….Mady Mesplé, the soprano and a frequent vocal partner, told Le Monde that ‘with [Vanzo’s passing in 2002] a whole page of French lyric history has vanished’."
- Anne Midgette, THE NEW YORK TIMES, 24 Feb. 2002
"...the French bass Xavier Depraz had a warm basso cantante voice which darkened a little in its bottom register, opening out into a lower extension quite unusual for its type, enabling him to sing Mozart's bass roles convincingly....He is a touching Don Quichotte, a role he could have been born to sing....Nilakantha's stanzas from LAKMÉ are beautiful."
- Tully Potter, THE RECORD COLLECTOR, 2016
FRANCO CORELLI: Arias from La Battaglia di Legnano, Aida, I Lombardi, Rigoletto, Ballo, Il Trovatore, Forza, Ernani, Don Carlos , Otello & Simon Boccanegra. (France) Malibran AMR 142. (V2549)
"Vocal size and rugged style mark [Corelli] as an open-air tenor. The vibrancy of his timbre is unequaled among tenors, and often it holds a commendable warmth as well."
- Paul Jackson, SIGN-OFF FOR THE OLD MET, p.374ANTONIO MAGINI-COLETTI: Songs by Tosti; Arias & Duets (w.Burzio, Corradetti & Luppi) from Il Guarany, Crispino e la Comare, Linda di Chamounix, Maria di Rohan, Lucia, La Favorita, Faust, Lucrezia Borgia, Dinorah, Rigoletto, Carmen, Lakme, La Damnation de Faust, Il Trovatore, La Traviata, Forza & Falstaff. (France) Malibran AMR 152. (V2548)
"Magini-Coletti studied singing during the 1870s with the distinguished pedagogue Venceslao Persichini at Rome's Conservatorio di Santa Cecilia. (Persichini's other students included the lyric tenor Francesco Marconi and Magini-Coletti's fellow baritones Mattia Battistini, Giuseppe De Luca and Titta Ruffo.) In 1880, Magini-Colleti made his operatic debut at Rome's Teatro Costanzi, as Valentin in Gounod's FAUST. He continued to perform regularly at that opera house for the next seven years, in addition to making guest appearances in Venice, Florence, Naples and other Italian cities. In 1887 he joined the roster at La Scala, remaining there for three seasons and singing a variety of leading baritone roles. Between 1888 and 1891, Magini-Coletti sang to acclaim in Spain, Portugal, Germany, Austria and France. He also crossed the Atlantic for a series of operatic engagements in Argentina, receiving further plaudits. In 1891 he joined the stellar roster of singers at the Metropolitan Opera, participating in a two-month North American tour. His first performance with the Met touring company occurred on 9 November, in Chicago, as Telramund in LOHENGRIN. On 14 December, 1891, Magini-Coletti made a successful debut at the Metropolitan Opera House singing Capulet in Gounod's ROMEO ET JULIETTE. He performed numerous roles at that house over the next 12 months. Magini-Coletti left America in 1892 and proceeded to pursue a busy schedule of operatic performances in Italy and other European countries, venturing as far afield as Russia and becoming a frequent guest artist at both the Opéra de Monte-Carlo in Monaco and the Royal Opera, Covent Garden. In 1900, he rejoined the La Scala company, performing numerous roles there for three seasons….Magini-Colleti sang often under the baton of Arturo Toscanini, La Scala's principal conductor, during this period. Toscanini was an ardent advocate of Wagner's music and he conducted Magini-Coletti in performances of TRISTAN UND ISOLDE, DIE WALKURE and LOHENGRIN. These landmark Wagnerian productions often featured Magini-Coletti's La Scala colleague Giuseppe Borgatti - Italy's greatest heldentenor."
- Ned Ludd
. . . REPEATED FROM THE RECENT PAST . . .
RÉGINE CRESPIN: Rare Broadcast Recordings, w.John Wustman (Pf.): Songs by Schumann, Wolf, Poulenc & Canteloube - Live Recital, Strasbourg, 1966; w.Schippers Cond. NYPO: Sheherazade (Ravel); Ah, Perfido (Beethoven) - Live Performance, Philharmonic Hall, 7 Feb., 1966, w.broadcast commentary by Milton Cross; w.Karl Kritz Cond. Syracuse S.O.: LES NUITS D’ETE (Berlioz) - Live Performance, 19 Oct., 1968; w.Inghelbrecht, Sebastian & Gavazzeni: Operatic Arias & Duets. (Canada) 2-Immortal Performances IPCD 1085. Restoration by Richard Caniell. Includes 14pp Booklet w.notes by Henry Fogel & Richard Caniell. [Crespin's radiant performance of LES NUITS D’ETE under the sensitive baton of Karl Kritz, brilliantly recorded in a spacious acoustic, alone is worth the price of the entire set!] (V2547)
“Crespin made a lovely recording of Ravel’s Sheherazade for Decca, coupled with Berlioz’ LES NUITS D’ETE, with Ernest Ansermet and the Suisse Romande Orchestra. But in both of those cycles, Crespin reveals more interpretative subtlety and freedom in live performances [of the above]. Some of it, to be sure, must be the presence of an audience. Like many performers, Crespin clearly was energized by the live performance experience….when one compares [these live performances] with the studio recording[s], one finds an electricity here, an added frisson, that results from the fact that the performer is a true stage animal. Not only the presence of the audience, but the internal knowledge that this is a once-in-a-lifetime performance with no going back for corrections adds urgency to the moment….To be sure, one of the remarkable assets of Crespin’s singing was the power and size of the voice. She could compete on even grounds with Nilsson when they sang together in DIE WALKURE, and with Corelli in WERTHER.
But there was much, much more to Crespin than sheer visceral impact. She sang with subtlety, a variety of colors depending on the demands of the music and the dramatic moment, and always with real involvement. Her singing was filled with nuance, with a wide range of dynamic shading, and was always founded on a beautiful glowing tone. [Regarding] the Syracuse performances [of the Berlioz, Crespin] told me that she much preferred [them] to her recording of LES NUITS D’ETE, with Ernest Ansermet and his Suisse Romande Orchestra, long considered a classic….that Kritz accompanied her in a way that she felt was more appropriate to the way she heard and felt the music…she felt more flexibility, more freedom to phrase, in these performances….[Kritz’s] operatic background made him the perfect accompanist, and you can hear the ensemble between Kritz and Crespin throughout the Berlioz. He is listening to her, reacting to her way with turning a phrase and echoing it in the orchestra.”
- Henry Fogel, Program Notes
"Invaluable supplements to studio recordings meet rarities in this radiant set dedicated to the work of the great Regine Crespin.
Now here is a treasure-trove of recordings that adds to our knowledge of her, complete with introductions in French. The Strasbourg Schumann LIEDERKREIS is a gem of a performance….There is an added spontaneity to Crespin’s delivery in the Ravel, with a splendidly musical solo violin in the first song, ‘Asie’. Here, too Schippers finds great depth of string sound, superbly caught in Immortal Performances’s transfer. The heady heights the orchestra reaches in ‘La flute enchantee’ signify a connection with the music that is entirely on a par with Crespin’s, while this movement is decidedly more fluid than in the studio.
[In] the Berlioz LES NUITS D’ETE…Crespin’s lower register is impressively strong. The serene pace of ‘Absence’ allows time for the harmonic shifts to be fully relished. The accompaniment here is particularly alert under Kritz: repeated string chords of various descriptions, but magically rendered.
Henry Fogel’s booklet notes are invaluable, especially as he was involved with the recording of the Berlioz here. All lovers of vocal music should gravitate to this set like moths to a flame.”
- Colin Clarke, FANFARE, Sept. /Oct., 2017
JOSEF MANN: Songs by Schubert, Cherubini, Moniuszko & Noskowski; Arias & Duets (w.Barbara Kemp) from Aida, Otello, Aida, Ballo, Rigoletto, Il Trovatore, Tosca, Pagliacci, Cavalleria, Martha, La Juive, Carmen, Die Königin von Saba, Tannhäuser, Tristan, Parsifal, Lohengrin, Mona Lisa, Der Evangelimann, Tiefland, Straszny Dwor & Halka. (Germany) 2-Truesound Transfers 4008, recorded 1910-21, Pathe & Odeon. Transfers by Christian Zwarg. [Of so many Zwarg miraculous restorations, this one is truly a revelation!] (V2546)
“Josef Mann was a Ukrainian dramatic tenor born in 1883. He died tragically at the age of 38 of a heart attack during a performance of AIDA
in Berlin on September 5, 1921, just a month before a scheduled trip to New York to make his Metropolitan Opera debut. The Met had offered him a five-year contract, hoping Mann would fill the shoes of Caruso, who had retired in 1920 and died in August, 1921. Mann is largely forgotten today, not even rating a mention in John Steane’s THE GRAND TRADITION
or in Michael Scott’s THE RECORD OF SINGING
. But there are 47 titles transferred here, recordings made for Pathé and Odeon, companies that would not have invested in so many recordings of a singer without a considerable reputation. The recordings were made in the decade between 1911 and 1921, and they are a revelation.
Mann may not have been the most imaginative interpreter. The singing here is straightforward, idiomatic, and naturally phrased, but with few individual touches. There are no moments of dramatic or even musical individuality that will cause the listener to pull up short in surprise. But do not let that discourage you from seeking this release out. What you will hear is an extraordinarily evenly produced line, a dramatic tenor voice that is solid from top to bottom of its range, produced with remarkable and uncommon steadiness of tonal emission. The top notes ring out freely in most of the recordings, although there are a few (the 1919 ‘Celeste Aida’, for example) where the top sounds just a bit tight.
Mann made his debut in 1909 in his hometown of Lviv singing in Stanislaw Moniuszko’s opera JONTEK
, and one nice thing about this collection is that it includes two excerpts from that composer’s HALKA
, one from his STRASZNY DWÓR
, and a song as well. Mann’s career grew rapidly in Europe. In 1912 he was engaged at the Volksoper in Vienna, and in 1918 became an important singer at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden in Berlin. He created the title role in Pfitzner’s PALESTRINA
for its Berlin premiere. Before he died, Mann was learning the lead role of Paul in Korngold’s DIE TOTE STADT
to sing at the U.S. premiere at the Met (Orville Harrold took it over), and he was schedule to sing other Caruso roles as well….In an area not part of Caruso’s repertoire, it is Mann’s Wagner that is particularly impressive. Even in the bleeding chunks that were the only possibility within the limitations of 78s, he brings a remarkable sweep and richness of tone to TANNHÄUSER, TRISTAN, PARSIFAL
, and LOHENGRIN
. After the grace and elegance of his singing of Pedro’s scene from the Prologue of TIEFLAND
by Eugen d’Albert, the power of Mann’s rendition of ‘Amfortas! Die Wunde’ from PARSIFAL
catches one by surprise.
It is, in fact, the juxtaposition of real power with vocal elegance that makes Mann’s singing unique. If one were to list the virtues that one hopes to find in classically beautiful singing - firm, well-supported tone that retains its quality in all registers, smoothness of register shifts, a natural feeling for legato and phrase-shaping, clear diction, and a sense that the words and music have a dramatic meaning - these virtues are here in abundance. Virtually everything is sung in German, but the Italian numbers have the right ebb and flow, much as they did when Wunderlich sang Italian selections in German.
One could not ask for better transfers. Prior examples that I have encountered of Mann’s records lacked the richness of timbre that is brought out here; the previous transfers made the voice sound drier and harder in tone. Here one is impressed by the beauty of the sound, the glow that surrounds its firm tonal center. There are no notes, but total documentation for each recording is provided. The valuable website FORGOTTEN OPERA SINGERS
, run by Ashot Arakelyan, gives some good biographical background on Mann. Vocal collectors are in for a major discovery by tracking this 2-CD set down. It is available at Norbeck, Peters & Ford (www.norpete.com
- Henry Fogel, FANFAREARTURO TOSCANINI Cond. BBC S.O., w.BBC Choral Society; Zinka Milanov, Kerstin Thorborg, Koloman von Pataky & Nicola Moscona: MISSA SOLEMNIS, Live Performance, 28 May, 1939, Queens Hall, London; ARTURO TOSCANINI Cond. BBC S.O.: Symphony #7 in A (Live Performance, 14 June, 1935, Queen's Hall); 'Pastoral' Symphony #6 in F; ‘The Creatures of Prometheus’ Overture (all Beethoven), recorded 1935-39. (Canada) 2-Immortal Performances IPCD 1086. Restoration by Richard Caniell. Includes 26pp Booklet w.notes by Robert Matthew-Walker & Richard Caniell. (C1580)
“The MISSA SOLEMNIS is derived from one of several concerts Toscanini performed with the BBC Symphony Orchestra during the 1930s. Toscanini also made a series of acclaimed commercial recordings with the BBC SO. A palpable chemistry existed between the Maestro and this fine orchestra. As such, their commercial and in-performance recordings are a worthy complement to Toscanini’s magnificent 1930s collaborations with the New York Philharmonic….The Beethoven Seventh is a scintillating, thrilling performance that culminates in a hair-raising finale, inspiring an ecstatic response from the Queen’s Hall audience….In Caniell’s remasterings more surface noise is evident, although I do not find it intrusive at all. But the acoustic in the new restorations is correspondingly more open, transparent, and detailed. I find it a more realistic and musical sonic canvas….Richard Caniell’s superb restorations are now my preferred versions of all the performances included on this set. A first-rate release in every respect, and highly recommended.”
- Ken Meltzer, FANFARE, Nov. / Dec., 2017ARTURO TOSCANINI Cond. NYPO: The Victor Records Restored, incl. Gluck, Haydn, Mozart, Rossini, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Brahms, Verdi, Dukas & Wagner. (Canada) 3-Immortal Performances IPCD 1087, recorded 1929-36, Victor. Restoration by Richard Caniell. Includes 34pp Booklet w.notes by John Sullivan & Richard Caniell. (C1582)
“We’re fortunate that these precious recordings have been well served by sound restoration artists who specialize in historic material….I think Richard Caniell has achieved the best of both worlds in his new restoration for Immortal Performances. Caniell’s remasterings have a marvelous warmth, spaciousness and detail, coupled with impressive (and often hair-raising) presence and impact in the grand orchestral moments. I must emphasize that in comparing the various [previous] restorations, we are dealing uniformly with achievements of the highest level. That said, the new Immortal Performances set becomes my first choice to hear the great Toscanini-NYP recordings in all their sonic glory….if you are looking for the most complete representation of the Toscanini-NYP recordings…the finest sonic representation of these unique, glorious recordings, the front-runner in a most impressive field is Immortal Performances.”
- Ken Meltzer, FANFARE, Nov. / Dec., 2017ROGER DÉSORMIÈRE Cond. RTF S.O.: In Memoriam (Laszlo Lajtha); w.Maurice Duruflé (Organ), Camille Mauranne (Bar.) & Hélène Bouvier (MS): REQUIEM (World Premiere Performance) (Maurice Duruflé). (Canada) St Laurent Studio YSL T-593, Live Performance, 2 Nov., 1947. Transfers by Yves St Laurent. (C1581)
SIEGFRIED, Live Performance, 27 July, 1976, w.Boulez Cond. Bayreuth Festival Ensemble; Donald McIntyre, René Kollo, Heinz Zednik, Zoltan Kelemen, Bengt Rundgren, Gwyneth Jones, Hanna Schwarz, etc. [The second day of the First Cycle - a far superior version than the later performance already available on Video, these CDs [not DVDs] are in breathtakingly brilliant stereo sound! [Regarding this performance, note the fascinating BOULEZ IN BAYREUTH book, B0058] (Canada) 3-St Laurent Studio YSL T-670. Transfers by Yves St Laurent. (OP3241)
DIE WALKURE, Live Performance, 25 July, 1976, w.Boulez Cond. Bayreuth Festival Ensemble; Donald McIntyre, Peter Hofmann, Gwyneth Jones, Hannelore Bode, Matti Salminen, Eva Randova, etc. [The second day of the First Cycle – a far superior version than the later performance already available on Video, these CDs [not DVDs] are in breathtakingly brilliant stereo sound!] [Regarding this performance, note the fascinating BOULEZ IN BAYREUTH book, B0058] (Canada) 3-St Laurent Studio YSL T-645. Transfers by Yves St Laurent. (OP3241)
DAS RHEINGOLD, Live Performance, 24 July, 1976, w.Boulez Cond. Bayreuth Festival Ensemble; Donald McIntyre, Zoltan Kelemen, Bengt Rundgren, Matti Salminen, Eva Randova, etc. [The first day of the first cycle – a far superior version than the one already available on Video, in breathtakingly brilliant stereo sound!] [Regarding this performance, note the fascinating BOULEZ IN BAYREUTH book, B0058] (Canada) 2-St Laurent Studio YSL T-590. Transfers by Yves St Laurent. (OP3240)
LES COLLECTIONS DES CHEFS-D'OEUVRE ARTISTIQUES DE GIRARD & CIE, incl. Albert Alvarez, Jean Noté, Maurice Renaud, Jean-Francisque Delmas, Enrico Caruso, Charles Rousselière, Marie Delna, Jane Merey, Albert Vaguet, Fernand Baer, Auguste Affre, Paul Aumonier, Hippolyte Belhomme, Harry Weber, Emile Mercadier, Léon Beyle, Augustin Nuibo, Daniel Vigneau, François Viannec, Paul Dalbret, Désiré Charlesky, Dranem, Charlus, Polin, Virgilio Ranzato, Jean Bedetti, Emile Mendels, Angelo Alifieri, etc., etc. (Germany) 2-Truesound Transfers 4007, recorded 1907-08, Pathé. Transfers by Christian Zwarg. (V2545)
"...an absolute revelation! Here, the voice comes through with tonal sheen, passion and with more personality than any other transfers have been able to bring out. Dynamics and agility are in better relief, as is a sensitivity I had always found lacking. These transfers are absolutely miraculous, and I hope for more Truesound transfers."
- Davyd Booth, GREAT SINGERS REMEMBERED, WHYY – NPRJACQUELINE DU PRE: w.Barenboim Cond. Danish National S.O.: Cello Concerto in e (Elgar), Live Performance, 11 Sept., 1969, Copenhagen; w.Barenboim Cond. London S.O.: Cello Concerto in b (Dvorak), Live Performance, 2 Sept., 1968, Royal Albert Hall, London. [Prepare for the closest to Nirvana you're ever apt to encounter! This is a true jewel!] (Canada) St Laurent Studio YSL T-626. Transfers by Yves St Laurent. (S0714)
LEONID KOGAN, w.Samuel Alumyan (Pf.): Sonata in E (Handel); Sonata #9 in A (Beethoven); Sonata in A (Franck); Liebeslied (Kreisler). [A magnificent live recital in the presence of a highly cultivated audience, brilliantly recorded in a spacious acoustic! Not to be missed!] (Canada) St Laurent Studio YSL T-563, Live Performance, 1978, Tokyo. Transfers by Yves St Laurent. (S0715)
RENATA SCOTTO, w.John Wustman (Pf.): Songs by Carissimi, Cimarosa, Bellini, Rossini, Verdi & Tosti; Arias from La Vestale, Don Giovanni, Nozze, I Vespri Siciliani & I Lombardi - Live Performance, 1 Nov., 1970, Hunter College Playhouse, New York. [Recorded in the front row, independent of extraneous audience noise, this recording captures the spontaneity of the recital with no more than the occasional applause at appropriate moments!] (Canada) St Laurent Studio YSL T-665. Transfers by Yves St Laurent. (V2539)
“…Renata Scotto…sang always with a purpose, with meaning, and with a musical and vocal presence (and, onstage, a physical presence) that captivated one….Scotto would throw herself into the big moments of a role with complete abandon, but she would also have thought through every word and note of the part, and figured out the way to make its meaning clear, and to make certain that it was heard in the context of its place in the whole work.
Such an artist is likely to be successful in recitals of the song repertoire, and Scotto was that (in the later years of her career she even sang concert works like Berlioz’s LES NUITS D’ÉTÉ). St. Laurent Studio…which has been making sensationally good transfers of a lot of live material, has here preserved a fabulous recital from 1970 in New York’s Hunter College Playhouse. John Wustman was her regular accompanist, and he was one of the finest collaborative pianists of his generation….There is much…to treasure here. Throughout you will encounter moments that will thrill with their hushed beauty set beside moments of overpowering dramatic thrust. You will hear ringing and secure high notes that are not usually found in the arsenal of a singer known for her Butterfly.
The final encore of the evening, an exquisite rendering of Tosti’s ’A vucchella’, is the perfect ending to a memorable recital….”
- Henry Fogel, FANFAREMADAMA BUTTERFLY, Live Performance, 17 Dec., 1977, w.Patane Cond. Met Opera Ensemble; Renata Scotto, Giacomo Aragall, Ryan Edwards, James Atherton, Richard Best, Russell Christopher, Alma Jean Smith, etc. [Luxury casting in that we have Giacomo Aragall as Pinkerton in one of his infrequent Met performances.] (Canada) 2-St Laurent Studio stereo YSL T-658. Transfers by Yves St Laurent. (OP3242)
"…This performance, excellently transferred by St. Laurent Studio, is as gripping and convincing a performance of this opera as I have ever heard. There are so many details of Scotto's portrayal here that it would take an entire volume of FANFARE to catalogue them all. If you want to find a single moment that demonstrates vividly the greatness of this performance, just go to Cio-Cio-San’s horror-filled outcry to Sharpless ‘Ah! mi scordata?’ (Ah! Has he forgotten me?) A great stroke by Puccini, made gut-wrenching by Scotto, who practically chokes. When Pinkerton’s ship does return, and Butterfly experiences a brief period of triumph and joy, her depiction of the shift from despair to ecstasy as she recognizes the ship is filled with specifics of tone color and inflection that make the moment real. At the end of that scene, her extended high A on ‘Ei torna e me’ (He has come back and he loves me) comes from deep within her. You hear this and you feel that she will explode with happiness. It is singing of uncommon greatness, a level of emotional intensity we rarely hear from even the most special singers. Then the hushed, intimate tone she uses to ask Suzuki to dress her as she was on the day she met Pinkerton is yet another moment that will long stay in the memory.
Scotto is also in wonderful voice here. The high D-flat at the end of her entrance is a bit wavery, but it is the only (brief) moment of less than glorious singing. Her soft singing in the little lullaby that opens the final act ‘Dormi, amor mio’ will take your breath away. Throughout her long dialogue with Sharpless in the second act, Scotto does not throw one line away casually. Not for one measure is she an opera singer portraying a character. She is Cio-Cio-San, and we feel her faith, and her pain, deeply.
Giacomo Aragall is a more than adequate Pinkerton. The Spanish tenor had a lovely timbre and an innate feel for the shape of music like this. He doesn’t have Bergonzi’s uniquely personal way of phrasing, but he is a good partner for Scotto….The remainder of the cast is fine, and a lot of credit should go to Giuseppe Patane. Patane’s death at 57 from a heart attack in 1989 (suffered while conducting IL BARBIERE DI SIVIGLIA in Munich) robbed us of one of the few conductors who really understood the Puccini idiom and communicated it to singers and audiences.
Anyone to whom MADAMA BUTTERFLY is an important work should know this performance. There is about it a dramatic truth that resonates with stunning impact.”
- Henry Fogel, FANFARE ----------------------------------------- SMARTER THAN ALL THREE OF US ! ! !
We are grateful to so many of our readers who continue to note that our once-regular use of accent marks is becoming rather erratic. Due to the ever-growing popular use of ‘Smart’ Phones, Google automatically and frequently is restricting such marks, as well as that which we consider regular punctuation. In compliance with Google’s restrictive demands, as well as the fact that such complicated listings will require too long a period during which to download, or may not succeed in downloading at all, most of our newer listings are deleting such marks, much to our sense of loss. While our older listings so far retain such marks, we are informed that it won’t be long before they too automatically will be amended. We certainly take pride in our presentation, but are being compelled to adapt to another loss of style in these fast-paced times! We very sincerely appreciate so many of your valued comments and commiseration!!! -----------------------------------------
. . . numerous out-of-print CDs and LPs, [many sealed
copies of numerous out-of-print additions: The Record
Collector, Naxos, VRCS, Issues of Symposium's Harold
Wayne series, Romophone, GOP & many Met Opera
broadcasts & operas from Moscow's Aquarius, plus
Operas by Mercadante, Marais, Coccia, Vivaldi,
Cherubini, Spontini, Ricci, Vaccaj, Fioravanti,
Paisiello, Scarlatti, de Majo, Generali, Cavalli,
Rameau, Lully, Pergolesi, Cimarosa, Anfossi, Pietri,
Musinelli, Rossini, Charpentier, Gluck, Handel,
Vivaldi, Monteverdi, Rossini, Cagnoni, Myslivecek,
Mayr, Hasse, Meyerbeer, Weckerlin, Nicolai,
Marschner, Gurlitt, Schreker, etc.] have been added
throughout our listings, in appropriate categories . . .
out-of-print books [many biographies,
Record Catalogue- Discographies . . .
and more CDs and books are added each week] . . .
Our 50% Discount Sale continues,
now offering more than 2200 titles . . .
- - - - - - - 78rpm collectors, please note auctions from:
Dave Schmutz, www.78classicalgallery.com
- or at: 818-242-6247
------------------ ANNOUNCEMENT -----------------
Norbeck, Peters & Ford's Annual 78rpm Has Now Closed!
This auction featured an entire section of which is dedicated to 7" discs, plus many wonderful instrumental and vocal rarities, many of which we're offering for the first time in our 45 years of operation.
You can still view the online version simply click the link below:Auction #148 Online Catalog
To download a copy of Auction #148, simply click the link below:Auction #148 Catalog File Download
For the recently-offered Archipel, Myto, Gebhardt, Walhall, Melodiya, Vista Vera & Living Stage titles on sale, simply visit our sale section of our website
). This is the ideal opportunity at bargain prices to fill in gaps in one's collection.
. . . For the Opus Kura,
Archipel, Myto, Walhall, Gebhardt &
Living Stage titles on sale,
simply visit our
sale section of our website . . .
Once again . . .
Welcome to our new bookshop & list of Original Cast LPs, www.norpete.com
where you will see a vast array of excellent, used out-of-print books. You're sure to find many books of interest which may have long eluded you, so now is your opportunity to fill in missing gaps. Our online bookshop includes composer and performer autobiographies and biographies. Soon we will include musical criticism, theory and history, plus histories of symphony orchestras, opera houses and festivals. In addition, we shall offer quite an array of vocal scores, many of which are most rare and unusual.
Take a look at our exciting array of Broadway & Off-Broadway Original Cast and London Original Cast LPs, all in superb condition.
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We carry splendid CD offerings from Yves St Laurent, VRCS, The Record Collector, Marston, Palaeophonics, Immortal Performances (Canada), Malibran, Aquarius, Truesound Transfers, Walhall, Bongiovanni, Clama and many other labels.
Now that our Auction #145
is completed, the Auction Catalogue remains on our current website. Most of the elusive and rare items of course are gone, but some titles remain available.
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Thank you again for your loyal support, and happy browsing our ever changing website and exciting offerings.
OP3247. LA DAMNATION DE FAUST (Berlioz), Live Performance, 23 March, 1963, Amsterdam; w.Fournet Cond. Radio Holland S.O. & Chorus; RÃ©gine Crespin, Guy Chauvet, Michel Roux & Peter van der Bilt. [With not a single weak link in this magnificent ensemble, the incomparable Jean Fournet gives us a shimmering performance of both power and sensitive delicacy.] (France) 2-Malibran 820. - 7600003778208
OP3244. DON CARLOS, Original French Version, Live Performance, 9 Nov., 1961, w. Charles Bruck; Alain Vanzo, Rene Bianco, Xavier Depraz, Jacques Mars, Germaine Bonnet, Genevieve Macaux, Claudine Collart, Lucien Lovano & Joseph Peyron. (France) 2-Malibran 818. - 7600003778185
V2549. FRANCO CORELLI: Arias from La Battaglia di Legnano, Aida, I Lombardi, Rigoletto, Ballo, Il Trovatore, Forza, Ernani, Don Carlos , Otello & Simon Boccanegra. (France) Malibran AMR 142.
V2548. ANTONIO MAGINI-COLETTI: Songs by Tosti; Arias & Duets (w.Burzio, Corradetti & Luppi) from Il Guarany, Crispino e la Comare, Linda di Chamounix, Maria di Rohan, Lucia, La Favorita, Faust, Lucrezia Borgia, Dinorah, Rigoletto, Carmen, Lakme, La Damnation de Faust, Il Trovatore, La Traviata, Forza & Falstaff. (France) Malibran AMR 152.
Pelleas et Melisande (Haitink - Boston; Lorraine Hunt Lieberson, Keenlyside, Finley) (3-St Laurent Studio YSL T-521)
Ariadne auf Naxos (Scherman; Eileen Farrell, Mattiwilda Dobbs, Jon Crain) (St Laurent Studio YSL T-517)
Klaus Tennstedt, Vol. I (Bruckner 8th - Boston) (St Laurent Studio YSL T-332)
William Steinberg, Vol. V; Tristan und Isolde (Eileen Farrell, James King, Nell Rankin) (St Laurent Studio YSL T-544)
Klaus Tennstedt, Vol. IV (Bruckner 7th - Boston) (St Laurent Studio YSL T-570)
Eleanor Steber (Marcia Sloat) (9780963417404)
La Fanciulla del West (Behr; Steber, Corelli / Bardini, Colzani) (2-St Laurent Studio YSL T-519)
Aida / Forza (Bellezza; Rethberg, Ponselle, Martinelli, Pinza, de Luca) (2-Immortal Performances IPCD 1071)
Samson et Dalila (Pelletier; Maison, Stevens, Warren, Moscona) (2-Immortal Performances IPCD 1084)
Medea (Gui) / Lucia di Lammermoor (Cleva) - TWO Maria Callas Performances (4-Immortal Performances IPCD 1076)
Arturo Toscanini; Michel Piastro, Alfred Wallenstein (Brahms) (2-Immortal Performances IPCD 1077)
William Kapell - 3 First Releases; Rodzinski, Richard Burgin, Ormandy (JSP684)
Renata Scotto; John Wustman (1970 Hunter College Recital) (St Laurent Studio YSL T-665)
Norma (Panizza; Cigna, Castagna, Martinelli, Pinza, Votipka) (2-Immortal Performances IPCD 1063)
Otello (1940 Performance) (Panizza; Martinelli, Rethberg, Tibbett) (2-Immortal Performances IPCD 1070)
Arturo Toscanini (Beethoven 9th); Bovy, Thorborg, Peerce, Pinza (2-Immortal Performances IPCD 1079)
Klaus Tennstedt, Vol. II (2-St Laurent Studio YSL T-542)
Mark Reizen - Live Recital, 15 March, 1958 (Aquarius AQVR 408)
Carmen - 9 Jan., 1937 (Papi; Ponselle, Rayner, Bodanya, Huehn) (2-St Laurent Studio YSL T-649)
Charles Munch, Vol. XVII; Damnation de Faust (Steber, Singher, McCollum) (2-St Laurent Studio YSL T-458)
Klaus Tennstedt, Vol. III (St Laurent Studio YSL T-543)
Andrea Chenier (Cleva; Richard Tucker, Zinka Milanov, Anselmo Colzani) (2-St Laurent Studio YSL T-434)
Simon Boccanegra (Cleva; Cornell MacNeil, Zinka Milanov, Giorgio Tozzi, Barry Morell) (2-St Laurent Studio YSL T-442)
Gianna Pederzini; Renato Zanelli (2-St. Laurent Studio 78-522)
Istvan Kertesz; Birgit Finnila & Simone Mangelsdorff (Mahler) (St Laurent Studio YSL T-451)
L'Elisir d'Amore (Weikert; Upshaw, Cole, Taddei) (2-St Laurent Studio YSL T-516)
Die Fledermaus (Kozma; Steber, Kullman, Munsel, Hayward, Novotna, Brownlee) (2-Yves St Laurent T-647)
Rheingold (Boulez; Donald McIntyre, Zoltan Kelemen, Bengt Rundgren, Matti Salminen) (2-St Laurent Studio YSL T-590)
The Unknown Fernando De Lucia - Phonotype Recordings, 1917-21 (The Record Collector TRC 44)
Adolf Wallnofer & Hermann Winkelmann (2-Truesound Transfers 4004)
Alexis Weissenberg, Vol. V; Kondrashin, Rowicki (St Laurent Studio YSL T-485)
Maria Jeritza (Malibran AMR 133)
Erich Leinsdorf, Vol. VI; Sills, Wolff, Domingo, Berberian) (St Laurent Studio YSL T-453)
Cosi Fan Tutte (Cantelli; Schwarzkopf, Merriman, Sciutti, Alva, Panerai) (2-Immortal Performances IPCD 1083)
Carmen (Paray; Jean Madeira, Brian Sullivan, Marjorie Gordon & Donald Gramm) (2-St Laurent Studio YSL T-396)
Melanie Kurt; Matzenauer, Metzger, Urlus, Jorn, Kraus, Feinhals, Knupfer & Schorr (2-Truesound Transfers 4005)
Sir John Barbirolli - Boston Symphony Orchestra (St Laurent Studio YSL T-415)
Lener String Quartet, Vol. I (Brahms) (St Laurent Studio YSL 78-634)
George Szell, Vol. IV (St Laurent Studio YSL T-405)
La Boheme (Samosud; Kozlovsky, Shumskaya, Burlak, Yakovenko, Korolev) (2-Aquarius AQVR 405)
The Boy (William H. Berry, Peter Gawthorne & Nellie Taylor) (Palaeophonics 141)
Judith Raskin, Vol. I, w.George Schick (Pf.) (St Laurent Studio YSL T-444)
Nicolai Gedda, Vol. I ; John Wustman (Pf.) (St Laurent Studio YSL T-435)
Pierre Boulez, Vol. VIII; Bluebeard's Castle, w. Tatiana Troyanos; Zoltan Kelemen (St Laurent Studio YSL T-385)
Grand Format Musical Boxes - Operatic Overtures & Grand Arias (Musical Wonder House of Wiscasset, Maine)
Siegfried (Boulez; McIntyre, Jones, Kollo, Kelemen, Zednik, Rundgren) (3-St Laurent Studio YSL T-670)
Aida (Cleva; Arroyo, McCracken, Bumbry, Colzani, Flagello, Plishka) (2-St Laurent Studio YSL T-515)
Forza (Molinari-Pradelli; Leontyne Price, Corelli, Merrill, Hines, Corena) (2-St Laurent Studio YSL T-652)
Frauenliebe und Leben - 8 individual performances (2-Immortal Performances IPCD 1062)
Erich Leinsdorf, Vol. V; Gina Bachauer; Beverly Sills (2-St Laurent Studio YSL T-412)