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Verdi: Un Ballo in Maschera
Giuseppe Verdi, Gianandrea Gavazzeni, La Scala Theater Orchestra
Verdi: Un Ballo in Maschera
Genre: Classical
  •  Track Listings (21) - Disc #1
  •  Track Listings (16) - Disc #2


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CD Reviews

A truly first class performance of Un Ballo in Maschera!
Rod Tierman | 07/27/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"All three of the major stars, Callas, Di Stefano, and Bastianini on this performance of Un Ballo un Maschera are at the very peak of their powers. Callas is simply in stunning voice and her dramatic intepretation of Amelia definitely impresses here. Callas was truly a one of a kind Diva. Di Stefano is in his glorious prime. Riccardo was a role Di Stefano was born to sing. All his major arias and duets are flawlessly done ("Di tu se Fedele", "La Riverdra", and "Ma Se M'e Forza Perderti", to name just a few), with a dramatic interpretation and intensity rivaled by none. The voice of Ettore Bastianini is simply awesome. "Alla Vita Che T'arride" and "Eri Tu" are particularly compelling and Bastianini definitely gives the Renato on th EMI set with Callas and Di Stefano, Tito Gobbi, a real run for his money. Gianandrea Gavazzeni's conducting is first class all the way and the La Scala chorus and orchestra are in top form. The sound quality of this recording is good to excellent, especially for a live recording done circa 1957. This is a must have performance, even if you already own a recording of Un Ballo in Maschera and the price from Opera D'Oro and is an absolute steal. Get this recording today! Truly great singing."
Verdian singing at its best A Classic!
Yuri | 12/16/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"One can really feel the sense of occasion on this superb live disc,this was the first time Callas had sung the role of Amelia on stage (she had recorded it the previous year)and there were great expectations with rumours abounding that her vocal powers were in decline but Callas simply rose to the challange singing beautifully,giving tremendous passion and vulnerability to the role like no other singer has done,her portrait of Amelia comes to life in a very three dimensional way and those top C's are magnificent,she is in stunning form! The other singers are cast from strength,Di Stefano is a natural for the role of Riccardo with his wonderfully flowing tenor,relishing the lighter moments and being positively uplifted in the duet"Teco io sto" with Callas,his performance is magnificent,so too Bastianini,his dark velvet baritone used imposingly in the part of Renato,Simionato is incomparable in the role of Ulrica her singing of"Re dell'abisso affrettati" is sublime with wonderful contralto tone,dark and firm,Gavazzeni conducts with real flare while being sensitive to the needs of his illustrious singers and the orchestra rises to the occasion magnificantly, a truly wonderful,unique evening captured in good quality sound this for me surpassess the studio version of a year earlier with most of the same singers as it captures a piece of musical history,it is most recommendable!!!"
Music lover | Philadelphia | 12/02/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This has to be one of the best releases by Opera d'Oro. The sound is perfectly acceptable broadcast mono from the fifties. But the performance is what is special. Even more so than the studio version with a nearly identical cast, this performance crackles with drama from first to last. Gavazenni is the main difference, being a much more potent force than Votto on EMI.Callas is in her element as Amelia. Her live performance is more imaginative and freely sung than her studio version. And her voice sounds much firmer and more beautiful with space around it, Walter Legge miked her too closely in her EMI recordings. The only quibble is that she is a shade uninvolved in "Morro, ma prima in grazia". Tebaldi, Caniglia, Rethberg, Price and even Arroyo have made more of that aria. But the rest is sheer magic and beautiful to boot.DiStefano is a bit overparted as Riccardo but sings with charm and conviction. And his voice is so attractive that it is difficult to resist his work. Bergonzi and the young Pavarotti are also exemplary in this role.Battistini is as good if not more rich sounding than Gobbi for EMI and Siminato is the equal of Barbieri. Chorus and orchestra splendid and highly idiomatic.Definitley recommended, especially at the bargain basement price. For stereo consider Price, Bergonzi and Merril on RCA, Arroyo, Domingo and Capuccilli under Muti on EMI or Pavarotti on Decca. Also worth investigating is Gigli and Caniglia, the new Naxos version being well engineered and having a wonderful bonus of scenes with Bonci and Arangi-Lombardi to show how "Ballo" should really be sung."