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Verdi Arias
Giuseppe Verdi, José Cura, Philharmonia Orchestra of London
Verdi Arias
Genre: Classical
 
  •  Track Listings (11) - Disc #1

This recital shows off the extraordinary dual talents of Josť Cura as tenor and conductor, and, much as envy might compel one to say he should stick to one or the other, conscience demands otherwise. He does a superb j...  more »

     
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CD Details

All Artists: Giuseppe Verdi, José Cura, Philharmonia Orchestra of London
Title: Verdi Arias
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: Elektra / Wea
Original Release Date: 1/1/2000
Re-Release Date: 10/10/2000
Genre: Classical
Style: Opera & Classical Vocal
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 685738023226

Synopsis

Amazon.com
This recital shows off the extraordinary dual talents of José Cura as tenor and conductor, and, much as envy might compel one to say he should stick to one or the other, conscience demands otherwise. He does a superb job in both spheres--and, more than that, his intuitive and gripping sense of drama links them inextricably. The accompaniments are bound up with the vocal line in compelling and exciting ways: every slight expansion of a phrase, every passionate quickening of tempo, every moment of vocal calm or storm, is felt in the orchestra. His choice of tempi are not always conventional, either: "De' miei bollenti spiriti" from La traviata is speedier than you might have heard it before, for example, but it perfectly captures Alfredo's youthful ardor. Cura's feeling for the heart of a situation is backed up by a glorious voice, with a remarkably full baritonal range and a thrilling top--and he seems to have a rainbow palette of colors to lighten or darken the sound as necessary. One quibble is that he sings "Di quella pira" from Il trovatore a semitone low. But, overall, this is a wonderful recording of a wonderful voice. --Warwick Thompson
 

CD Reviews

Disappointing after his Puccini CD
David A. Kemp | Plano, TX USA | 05/19/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)

"I was favorably impressed with Cura's debut recital of Puccini arias (recorded June 1997), and on the strength of that favorable impression I bought his Verismo arias CD (recorded July 1999) and his Verdi arias CD (recorded Feb. 2000). I found both disappointing; neither is up to the standard of the Puccini disc. What is alarming is that I believe there has been audible deterioration in his voice in the short period of only two and three years between recording the Puccini disc and recording the next two. He is singing heavy roles usually, and advisedly, taken on by tenors later in their careers (e.g., Samson, Otello), and I hope this promising tenor won't sing himself out prematurely.In addition, the Verdi arias CD gives poor measure for a full-priced disc, only 11 arias at 54 minutes timing (both the Puccini and Verismo CD's are over 70 minutes)."
Better than Verismo, but not the best Verdi recital
Jeffrey B. Andersen | Clinton Twp., Michigan USA | 10/13/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Above all Jose Cura's singing is fantastic!!! He sounded much much better than he did on his Verismo disc. Jose Cura IS the best dramatic tenor in the business (this includes Ben Heppner, but only because Heppner has stayed away from Italian roles). Cura's sense of Verdi shines through in a brash way. He even includes arias from Simon Boccanegra (that can only be matched by Jose Carreras' version recorded in the late '70's with DG) and I Due Foscari. However, the total running time on the disc is a little over 54 minutes. A very short disc if you ask me. It would have been interesting to hear Jose's Duke from Rigoletto. I know this role is more suited for a smaller lyric voice but it still would have been a treat to hear Jose sing La donna e mobile and Parmi verder le lagrime. To me this is a major disappointment. He also left off Quando le sera al placido from Luisa Miller; another disappointment. But the singing!! He didn't warble and wobble in his top like he did on the Verismo cd (listen to I'mprovviso and you'll know what I mean). He is strong and stable and sings with conviction that, in my opinion, he has lacked since his Puccini disc with Domingo at the helm. I have critized the fact that Cura has directed as well as singing on his last 2 solo discs. However on this recording I found no evidence that Cura can't handle the duo role. Jose's Ah! si ben mio is fantastic but when he goes into Di quella pira it is evident that it is transposed down a hair and it is also slighlty butchered. Overall this is a disc Cura fans must have as well as opera fans of all kind. 4 stars because of the short running time and for the omition of the Rigoletto arias."
Not a great effort
D. Wolf | Fairfax, VA USA | 06/26/2002
(2 out of 5 stars)

"Simply put, Cura does not use his powerful voice to great effect. I've listened to his collection of Puccini arias where his strength finds better application. I even liked him in the TV production of La Boehme. But sadly, there appears to be no real interpretation in this recording, just sound. It's like listening to a horn player who can create a great sound from the instrument, but can't make music."