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Donizetti: Anna Bolena
Gaetano Donizetti, Gianandrea Gavazzeni, La Scala Theater Orchestra
Donizetti: Anna Bolena
Genre: Classical
  •  Track Listings (20) - Disc #1
  •  Track Listings (18) - Disc #2


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CD Reviews

L. Mitnick | Chicago, Illinois United States | 08/08/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"There's little sense in repeating the praises already voiced here. It's Callas in all her glory, and in what is probably her most spectacular La Scala revival (and there were plenty of great Callas revivals!). The fact is that Opera d'Oro has an infinitely superior pressing of this great performance than EMI has. I own both editions, and the difference in sound is dramatic. THIS is the edition to get! Callas' voice sounds immediate and vivid, and Simionato sounds gigantic. The Act II duet between these two vocal legends is the stuff of which operatic legend is made. There are no words that can describe the greatness of this performance ------ so why should anyone else even bother?"
Even better than the EMI version!
D. Bennett | 02/01/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This recording shows Maria Callas at her very best; dramatic, emotive and often beautiful singing throughout. The supporting cast is fine. Unlike the EMI issue of this live recording, this Opera D'oro set does not have a libretto, which is unfortunate as it is unlikely that an opera fan will have very many recordings of this rare opera, however, this edition has better sound than the EMI set, clearer and better focused.
This would make an excellent companion set to the Suliotis, Sutherland or Sills studio recordings as this is the most dramatic and moving of any versions available on CD in my opinion, although it cannot compete with the excellent sound on those recordings

Very Highly Recommended
Callas in her most famous revival!
D. Bennett | 07/03/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Anna Bolena is one of my favourite Bel Canto operas. F. Romani was again (like in most Bel Canto masterpieces: Norma, Lucrezia Borgia etc) responsible for the libretto and the result is magnificent!

With Maria Callas in the title role, we have Anna Bolena at her most dramatic. Her interpretation gives life to the opera even if vocally she shows a few strains and runs out of breath in the climax of "a dolce guidami". She is partnered with excellent artists: The spectacular G. Simionato, the aged but still credible N. Rossi-Lemeni and the neglected but superb G.Raimondi as Percy. Gavazzeni's masterful conducting completes this historical achievement. I, however, cannot understand why Callas did not persuade EMI to record this opera in studio(as well as Macbeth,Ernani,Nabucco).

Concluding, this is probably the best Anna Bolena (though cut). The sound quality is sufficient for 50s standards. Frankly, I do prefe listening to Soulioti's studio set since sound is important to me and Soulioti is also wonderful if also already a bit past her prime. Other great Annas you should consider are Gencer and the new Greek operatic sensation Dimitra Theodossiou.

In any case, this is a landmark recording!If you want the libretto go for the EMI set instead of this budget Opera d'oro release."