J. Luis Juarez Echenique | Mexico City | 11/20/2000
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I have no idea who was the "genius" who thought of Jessye Norman as Carmen. It is a pity that such an important singer as she turned out such a disastrous performance. Everything is wrong in her portrayal: sense of style, characterisation, charm...,the Don Jose and the Escamillo are hardly better, only Mirella Freni, even well past her prime, gives any pleasure. Ozawa conducts a grandiloquent, verismo Carmen, like they used to do in the 50's. Even if you are a fan of Norman, I would strongly recommend to stay away from this recording. If you are looking for a truly great recording of Carmen look no further than Teresa Berganza/Claudio Abbado in DG, the best recording ever of Bizet's masterpiece. Other good alternatives are Victoria de los Angeles/Beecham and Tatiana Troyanos/Solti, but Berganza is the most passionate and magical Carmencita of all."
Schicoff is a great Don Jose
KC | London, England | 02/08/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This recording has the best Don Jose ever recorded.
I find Jess Norman's Carmen a fine one too, very dramatic. The final scene is terrifying, so passionate. Don Jose is a desperate man. He sings with real passion."
Norman is an absolute Isolde but.....Carmen?
Paulino Partida | Guadalajara, Mexico | 04/10/2004
(2 out of 5 stars)
"What can I say of an absolute wonderful soprano who has a blooper? Carmen is not for her. She sounds so soft, that no man's heart can sense the Carmen's traditional dangerous fire.
The Orchestra sound is spectacular, but lacks of the grandeur that Ozawa has in Philips' Carmina Burana, for example. I am big Norman Fan, but I think she was born for singing spirituals, or Isolde or Poulenc Songs. The Figaro Countess under Davies is absolutely delicious. What can I say? Carmen is not for her.But she is a wonderful singer. Period. My Carmen is Julia Migenes and Placido Domingo under Lorin Maazel."
Paulino Partida | 01/01/2004
(1 out of 5 stars)
"I have given this recording more than just a few chances and I just cannot help but almost falling asleep everytime I listen to it! And Carmen is supposed to be a fun opera, so there MUST be something wrong here!There are a lot of good recordings out there and many time-transcending Carmens who's seduction skills will work their magic on you MUCH better than this one! I prefer Callas above all as Carmen...Avoid this one"