The Intense Soprano!
Impostazione | New York City Area | 04/27/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Buy this recording for the living blood performances of Lina Bruna-Rasa. She sings with outright passion. No doubt the frail condition of her mind may have helped her to lose all self awareness when she sang. Her performances are so human and warm. They are authentic. Hers was a free voice, with a possible exception at the very top. She possessed very strong piannissimi, a dramatic use of the chest quality, and perfect diction. The closest person that comes to my mind when hearing her is Caniglia, but it seems that Bruna-Rasa is more introspective and less exuberant than that high strung and strong voiced prima donna.
The complete Chenier is amazing since the conductor, Lina Bruna-Rasa and Carlo Galeffi bring in delicious performances, but with such stiff competition among Cheniers, this one can hold its own but not surpass all the others.
It is no use comparing Callas, Souliotis, Sass or any of the sopranos that may come to mind when discussing temperament and passion. They all lost the voices but Bruna-Rasa kept her voice and lost her mind.
Glorious Passion and I repeat...buy this for the bonus arias of Lina Bruna Rasa!"
Rasa-yes, Marini and Galeffi- No
A. DATTORE | 06/20/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This is a 1931 studio recording of the complete opera, featuring the 23 year old Lina Bruna Rasa. It is only one of two such full recordings she made before succumbing to her illness. She sings the part of Maddalena, and does it well. I wish her associates were as good. They're not. The tenor - Chenier - is the poorer of the two, being somewhat thin voiced and forcing. The baritone's sound is more attractive, and he is recorded with better fidelity; albeit his voice is thin too, and - to these ears - somewhat colorless. But perhaps it's the recording itself that is wanting, because "blasting" over microphones was common in those days, and re-takes almost unheard of; electronic recording being only six years old. So I will put this transcription among an "Old Opera" grouping, and drag it out occasionally when I want to hear this soprano, one of my all time favorites, sing again. This is an interesting, inexpensive recording, worthwhile for its historical value, primarily.