OP3083. LAKMÉ, Live Performance, 6 Jan., 1940, w.Pelletier Cond. Met Opera Ensemble; Lily Pons, Armand Tokatyan, Ezio Pinza, Irra Petina, etc.; (England) 2-Walhall 17. Very long out-of-print, final sealed copy! - 5019148605072
"Even more gratifying is the sure control and tonal loveliness of [Pons'] cantabile....It is her graceful cantilena, in fact, which proves so satisfying throughout the afternoon....The image of Lakm‚ must have appealed to Pons as a conceit which even her public could accept as a satisfying substitute for Pons, the diva. In any case, her vocal security on this broadcast heralds a welcome period of more agreeable listening for the radio audience."
- Paul Jackson, SATURDAY AFTERNOONS AT THE OLD MET, pp.200
“Of Armenian extraction, this handsome tenor achieved success in both opera and concert work. Armand Tokatyan brought an extraordinarily varied background to his American career, achieving success through cultivated presentation, distinguished bearing, and a voice of attractive quality….he achieved great success, attaining matinee idol status through his attractive appearance and polished stage manner. After being urged by the stage manager of the Cairo Opera to pursue a career in opera, Tokatyan traveled to Milan in 1919 to study voice and repertory. His 1921 operatic début took place at the Teatro Dal Varme as de Grieux in a production of Puccini's MANON LESCAUT. At the insistence of conductor Giuseppe Bamboschek, Tokatyan left for America to try his luck. Through Bamboschek's auspices, he was engaged by Antonio Scotti's interesting but short-lived opera company and while there, made a deep enough impression to prompt a contract offer from the Metropolitan Opera. For the decade beginning with his 14 February, 1923, début, Tokatyan regularly appeared with the company, concentrating on the Italian and French repertories. Critics were for the most part complimentary, citing the passion, fervor, tenderness, and grace of his singing. His stage deportment, no doubt having benefited from his experience in operetta, also aroused enthusiastic comments. In early 1933, Tokatyan left the Metropolitan to pursue his concert work, make occasional appearances in opera at such large venues at Lewisohn Stadium and the Hippodrome, and to appear on radio broadcasts. His Covent Garden début took place in 1934 when he sang a generally well-liked Calaf in TURANDOT….During the Metropolitan's 1936 spring season, Tokatyan returned to the company and subsequently sang during regular seasons. He remained with the company through 1946. A dedicated linguist, Tokatyan mastered a number of languages, achieving conversational ease in each one of them….his recordings are valued as mementos of a special artist, both manly and refined in utterance.”
- Erik Eriksson, allmusic.com