Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Andreas Schmidt, Renato Bruson, Giuseppe Verdi|
4 CD SET SINOPOLI/DEUTSCHE OPER BERLIN
4 CD SET SINOPOLI/DEUTSCHE OPER BERLIN
Give this one a try
Dr Karl | 09/23/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The 'Listener from Santa Fe' is surely a very shrewed operatic fan. His comments are fair and interesting. But I would like you to try this recording which for me represents the most exciting version of this ingenious score. True, Zampieri is no Callas; she hits the notes from below (just as Callas used to hit them from above and at times not hit them at all) and only barely survives some of the coloratura of the part of Lady Macbeth. But what a voice! She is a strange maniacal Lolita, whose voice has a really sexy quality that one rarely encounters in opera. I do wonder if any listeners have heard her in other parts, since her recording repertoire is so small - but for me, pace Calas, she is the best Lady on record.
Bruson is a singer for whom I have special affection; he is not one who tries to dramatize the part. His strength is what to my ears sounds like a beautiful tone, a cast iron legato (what breath!), a dark tone that is entirely appropriate for this opera and an ability to convey emotion (especially fear) through the tiniest vocal nuances. Maybe Cappuccilli and especially Milnes have a more glorious voice in the competing versions, but for me this opera is one that really draws the best out of Bruson. This, along with his Rigoleeto and (hard to find) Boccanegra are maybe his greatest achievements on record.
Sinopoli divides opinions. Parts of the score are conducted ridiculously slowly, but I forgive him everything because he (more than Muti or Abbado) makes the witches music truly phrenetic, meaningful - a true Nordic phantasmagoria as imagined by the relatively young Giuseppe Verdi, a genius about to achieve his promise.
With all respect to our listeners from Santa Fe, please take this strong recommendation from London and try this version of Verdi's first Shakespearean masterpiece.
Sinopoli has many ideas, but Verdi gets a bit lost
Santa Fe Listener | Santa Fe, NM USA | 05/12/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I am a major fan of Giuseppe Sinopoli, a genius whose abilities began with medicine and extended to conducting, with psychiatry and Egyptology along the way. He was controversial largley because English critics found him too individual and maverick for their tastes. But DG and Philips showed great respect for him, and by 1984 when this Macbeth was made, he had become de facto their major Veri/Puccini conductor. As usual, he has lots of ideas here, and even illustrious rivals like Abbado and Muti must take second place to Sinopoli's alert attention to phrasing and detail.
However, a conductor does not an opera make. The Macbeth on this recording, Renato Bruson, was famous for the role, and he sings at his best. I for one dislike the voice, and I don't find that Bruson really shows passionate commitment. He's musical, thoughtful, and dramatic, but my attention wasn't riveted by Macbeth's tortured downfall. Zampieri is also a problem as Lady Macbeth. She has the range and power for this immensely difficult role, but her voice is throaty, at times edgy, with a tendency to hit under the note and to hoot, thanks to a pronounced lack of vibrato. As to interpretation, no one comes close to Callas, but Zampieri doesn't come close to Rysanek or Verrett, either. Neil Shicoff does well as Macduff in his first major recording.
As for the Deutche Oper orchestra and chorus, you won't mistake either for Italians, and the witches in particular sound rather studied and lackluster---they don't tear into their cackling choruses with enough venom and grotesquerie. Philips early digital recording sounds fine on this latest reissue. In all, a disappointing result from a fascinating and much lamented conductor."