A great tiny opera
Reynaldo Pulido | Caracas, Venezuela | 06/30/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is- like connaisseurs say- a great opera in miniature, with the hole full-length comic opera structure, but concentred in one act and a little more than one hour. The scandalous farsa didn't find success, but the relative new Rossini's fever for unearth and clean his operas give a great present with this recording, which try to capture all the incongruency of this comedy, respecting the essence of bel canto, well performed by the veteran Samuel Ramey, one of the best Lindoros- Frank Lopardo-, and Kathleen Battle in the principal roles. If you believe these are the only star you're wrong, because the complement staff are occupied only by stars: Jennifer LArmore, Michele Pertusi, Claudio Desderi and Octavio Arévalo. When I did the quote this a compressed opera, but with a complete one's structure (and I summarize what the booklet says) this farsa has a polemic Overture, a brief introduction which ends with a sentimental duetto, a comic duetto (which remembers the Lindoro-Mustafà's duetto by its velocity and the Fiorilla-Geronio's one by its melody, a entrance aria of Gaudenzio with the baritonal and powerful voice of Samuel Ramey, then a terzetto which works as a finale; in the second half, we will listen a duetto, an Sofia aria which seems a heroine aria in serious opera with a introductory recitative accompagnato and a english horne obbligato, which participate in the final part of the aria. Later we enjoy of a Bruschino buffo aria, with a huge participation of four singers, conforming a really quintetto in the BArbiere, Cenerentola and Italiana style. Under the Ion MArin baton, this recording approach us in the spirit of what would be the great comedy career of Rossini. Composed in 1813, it introuce us to the Italiana in Algeri spirit which carried Rossini to Opera Comica kingdom."
Delirious one-act Rossini ? a must for Ramey fans
E. A. Lovitt | Gladwin, MI USA | 12/01/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Il Signor Bruschino," last of the Rossini `farse', bombed during its 1813 debut in Venice and was immediately withdrawn from production---the Venetians seem to have panned many good operatic debuts, as "La Traviatia" was also booed off of the stage at its first performance in 1853.Unlike Verdi, who brought `Traviatia' back a year later to great acclaim, Gioacchino Rossini never performed "Il Signor Bruschino" again. He even refused to attend a revival of his ninth opera (adapted for the Parisian stage by Jacques Offenbach in 1857) when he was rich, famous, and long finished with composing.This opera very much prefigures "Il Barbiere di Seviglia." Plotwise, a clever young woman outwits her pompous guardian and marries the tenor of her choice, who is disguised as the son of the guardian's friend. Guardian Gaudenzio's music may remind listeners of Guardian Bartolo's music in the later `Barber.' Rossini certainly wasn't shy about borrowing from himself.The great American bass, Samuel Ramey expresses every nuance of what is essentially an operatic stock character---the clueless guardian/tutor. In addition to a sparkling duet with his ward, Sophia (sung by soprano, Kathleen Battle), he also gets to show off his seamless coloratura in the free-wheeling cavatina, "Nel teatro del gran mondo." New York tenor, Frank Lopardo spins out a capable lyrical line as the false son of Signor Bruschino. The bewildered Signor Bruschino `padre' is sung by Claudio Desderi, who performs what might be the only buffo mad scene in opera. He is confronted by his bogus son, who impudently insists that the old man really is his father (this opera's subtitle is translated as `The Son by Accident'). In the ensuing ensemble, "Ho la testa o è endata via," all of the other characters chastise Signor Bruschino for his heartless behavior, while he reels around stage singing the Rossinian equivalent of, `What the hell is going on here?'The minor role of the chambermaid, Marianna is more than proficiently rendered by (!) Jennifer Larmore.Even an early, one-act Rossini has tremendous musical firepower, especially as sung on this Deutsche Grammophon CD. The English Chamber Orchestra performs up to the high standard of the composer and singers, under the baton of Ion Marin."