Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Franz von Suppe, Hermann Prey, Anneliese Rothenberger|
Suppé - Boccaccio / Rothenberger, Prey, Berry, E. Moser, Dallapozza; Boskovsky
A supper with Suppé.
John Austin | Kangaroo Ground, Australia | 11/07/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Browsers might have come to this review by way of a partiality for Viennese operetta and some of the tuneful overtures composed by Franz von Suppé. Another attraction might be the music scene in Munich in the 1960s and 1970s, the setting for many sterling recording projects featuring a fine ensemble of performers, including singers who could not only meet the musical demands but also deliver German dialogue with point, wit and charm. Browsers who expect to find some of the ribaldry and bawdiness of the stories contained in Boccaccio's Decameron might be disappointed. The plot, which is complicated beyond anything I have ever tried to understand, concerns Boccaccio himself, his endeavors to gather material for his stories, and his attempts to avoid the hostility his stories have aroused in the male citizens of Florence. This set will give much pleasure. The operetta is in the three act format (it appeared five years before "Die Fledermaus"). In quantitative terms it is very good value indeed: 36 numbers, mostly showstoppers for which any of the twelve principal singers would be well satisfied. Unlike many operettas of this ilk, its finale is one of the highlights - not merely a reprise of earlier material. Willi Boskovsky directs the recordings, one week in the making. A few pictures and brief descriptions of the action carried forward by the musical items are provided in three languages in the booklet. 1 hour, 45 minutes duration."
Andrew Powell | Santa Monica, CA | 05/25/2008
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Prey is a natural in the title role, with comedy built into the voice. Still, this was written for a tenor and performed by a soprano at the premiere. So why a baritone here? Rothenberger sounds old for Fiametta, particularly in relation to the women whose characters are older than hers. The rest of the solo singing passes muster. But the so-so chorus is recorded in a boxy acoustic and its words are muffled. This matters because the crowd's reactions drive the story (the writer Boccaccio causes scandals). The conducting lacks imagination. There is a flaw in the horn playing near the start of the overture. The 1974 sound-picture suggests a studio, not a live theater.
Sadly, this seems to be the only complete version of Boccaccio ever made. The Marco Polo label of Naxos started a Suppé series but never got to this work, which may be the composer's strongest.
The genius of von Suppe.
Wolfram von Kleist | Severn, MD | 04/24/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have always liked the overtures of Franz von Suppe. Beautiful melodies, stirring, energetic, with tender moments & powerful motifs. The orchestrations & instrumentations ever amazing. That being the case, I alwayss wondered what did the complete operettas (from which these overtures were excised) sounded like. Well, I found out how Boccaccio sounded. The whole operetta is just as beautiful & majestic as the overture! The complete work is constant & perpetual joy. I dop not know how von Suppe could pull-off such a non-stop train of energetic tunes! If his other operettas are as good, I will be nonplussed as to why they are not performed more often or at least played on radio."