Karajan in his hypnotic prime
Santa Fe Listener | Santa Fe, NM USA | 02/18/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Amazon hasn't quite indicated what this CD is: it's a part of DG's centennial celebration of the illustrious maestro, with emphasis on "original jacket" reissues of his prime recordings in remastered sound. Since many collectors consider the Karajan of the Sixties and Seventies their preferred one, this colleciton of opera intermezzi, neer before on CD in its original form, will be welcome.
The contents are somewhat uusual:
La Traviata : Prelude to Act III (Verdi). Cavalleria rusticana : Intermezzo sinfonico (Mascagni). Suor Angelica : Intermezzo (Puccini). Pagliacci : Intermzzo (Leoncavallo). Khowantschina : Intermezzo Act IV (Mussorgsky arr. Rimsky-Korsakov).Manon Lescaut : Intermezzo Act III (Puccini). Notre Dame : Intermezo (Franz Schimdt). Thais : Meditation Intermezzo Act II (Massenet). Fedora : Intermezzo Act II (Giordano). Adriana Lecuouvreur : Intermezzo Act II (Cilea). I Gioielli della Madonna : Intermezzo Act III (Wolf-Ferrari). L'amico Fritz : Intermezzo (Mascagni).
Old hands won't be thrilled, to say the least, by another Meditation from Thais or the Intermezzo to Cavalleria rusticana, but where else can they hear Karajan in the excerpts from Fedora and L'Amico Fritz? The style of the playing here is lyrical and hyupnotic, a prie example of Karajan weaving his magic spell -- assuming that you fall for it. As luxury examples of the Berlin strings flowing sumptuously along, nothing could be better, but the whole affair gets a bit treacly and glossy before the program is half over."
Paul | Houston | 10/15/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The Maestro at his best....beautifully recorded with a deep and wide soundstage. GET IT"