Otello - 3 Dec., 1938 (Panizza;  Maria Caniglia, Giovanni Martinelli, Lawrence Tibbett, Nicola Moscona)   (2-GOP 806)
Item# OP1165
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Product Description

Otello - 3 Dec., 1938 (Panizza;  Maria Caniglia, Giovanni Martinelli, Lawrence Tibbett, Nicola Moscona)   (2-GOP 806)
OP1165. OTELLO, Live Performance, 3 Dec., 1938, w.Panizza Cond. Met Opera Ensemble; Maria Caniglia, Giovanni Martinelli, Lawrence Tibbett, Alessio de Paolis, Nicola Moscona, etc. (Italy) 2-GOP 806. Long Out-of-print, Final Rare Sealed Copy! - 8012719980629


“There have been Otellos more dulcet or clarion, but Martinelli’s is the complete portrayal: as lover, as madman, as penitent murderer. Each component of his characterization authenticates the impact of the others. So realistic is his choked and debilitated projection of grief at the opera’s close that his ability actually to sing ‘Desdemona!’ is little short of miraculous. The Iago to Martinelli’s Otello…is Lawrence Tibbett….a consummate singing actor…Here his swarthy baritone is prodigious in scale and implausibly pliable. No studio recordings of these three famous Verdians convey the high voltage of this stage performance. Martinelli’s Otello and Tibbett’s Iago are so celebrated that their excellence is astonishing without being surprising. The surprise lies elsewhere: in the pit. What clinches this great performance is the incandescence of [the conducting of] Ettore Panizza.”

- Joseph Horowitz, THE NEW YORK TIMES, 9 March, 2003

“This is the second of two 1938 Metropolitan Opera broadcasts with legendary performers Giovanni Martinelli as Otello and Lawrence Tibbett as Iago. Referring to the earlier broadcast in his book OPERA ON CD, Alan Blyth writes that Martinelli's Otello has '...great pathos, not equaled since, achieved through accents of great plangency, and a close obedience to Verdi's copious markings’. In the booklet of the Music and Arts release of the same 12/2/1938 broadcast, John L. Briggs enthuses about Martinelli, mentioning that 1938 is the last year of Martinelli's absolute vocal prime, and as Otello displays impeccable breath control and phrasing, and superb diction, his voice tight and intense in timbre. I have taken the liberty of paraphrasing as a jumping-off point - Martinelli's voice can be an acquired but then addictive taste, lean, almost gristle-like, vocally like oysters, interpretively like pearls. Maria Caniglia (Desdemona) has a fiery Verdian soprano, her performance is emotional and quite individual, though vocally a bit variable, for example squally in Act Three, delicate in Act Four. Lawrence Tibbett (Iago) presents a very macho characterisation of all-out evil, in considerable contrast to his subtle, insinuating portrayal of February 12th. The supporting cast are good. Ettore Panizza turns in a reading that is appropriately dramatic with sensitivity.”

- Mark I. Lloyd