C. Roe | bloomington, in United States | 06/04/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Domingo sounds glorious on this live recording, which has excellent sound by the way--no irritating audience coughs or distracting cast member stage tromps and clomps--,and Price is even more luscious. Margaret Price was a Mozartian soprano who grew into the Verdi, Strauss, and Wagner reps. and is saddly underrated these days, yet the voice here is ravishingly beautiful, even throughout the range, top notes unfurling like bright banners against a summertime sky. She has the voice of a queen as is fitting for her role as Elisabetta. Listen to the love duet between Don Carlos and his future step-mother in Act I (this is the 5 act Italian language version) and remain unmoved if you can. While the set comes with no libretto, for the price, this truly is a best buy. And if you already own the Giulini recording of Domingo and Caballe, you need no other libretto anyway. The Eboli of Obraztsova is a little wild vocally, the runs aren't as clean as they should be, intonation is approximate in places, but she has the necessary b-flats and the crowd goes mad after her first aria (one would do well to listen to either Olga Borodina's Veil Aria on Haitink's Philips set or Baltsa's on Karajan's EMI for better examples of Verdian line and style). If you love Don Carlo as much as I, don't hesitate to add this to your library, and if you've always wanted a copy but found the 3-cd studio sets too expensive, this is the one to get."
Well, why not?
C. Roe | 03/28/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is very good recording of Don Carlo, not the best one, but still an interesting one. First of all, it is "live", so it may be interesting only to the fans of the opera. During the 1977-78 season there were two live "Carlo" recordings from Scala and both are conducted by Abbado. So far nice. They both feature Yelena Obraztsova as Eboli. Even nicer. Yevgeniy Nestrenko and Luigi Roni sing in both. On the first - the Inquisitor and the Monk, on the second (this one) they move up to the King and Inquisitor respectively. In the other recording, also available here at a much higher price the King is sung by Ghiaurov. One recording of his Philip should be in every music lover's collection, but he had many, so that may disqualify the other above mentioned recording - the most expensive one.And so, the cast.
Don Carlo - Placido Domingo.
On this recording he sounds better than on his studio version with Abbado made several years later. The reason is of course the text. Even if the Spanish tenor is fluent in French, Italian is still more comfortable for him. The voice is powerfull and his unique ability to sing as a lyric tenor at one moment as a dramatic one in the next works very well in the role of Carlo. But, of course he is nasal and sometimes does not show enough commitment in the dramatic moments.Elisabetta - Margaret Price
A fine Mozartian soprano, singing fine, but not making a very big impression.Philipp II - Yevgeniy Nesterenko
As said above, the role of the king suits him better than the part of the Inquisitor. He has a powerfull bass-baritone, with good high notes and audible low ones. His half-declamatory style is not loved by some listeners, but it works very well in the great monologue and in the following confrontation with the Inquisitor. He has sung Philipp in the Bolshoi for some years, but never recorded it commercially.Di Posa - Renato Bruson
What more can you ask for? The best baritone-brilliante since Taddei, a sencetive artist with high notes and a big "meaty" voice. Perfect.Eboli - Yelena Obraztsova
If anything is more perfect than Bruson - it's the great Soviet mezzo. She was often partnered with Nesterenko in many operas (including this one) in the Bolshoi and their combination was uniqe. Especially in such works as "Aida" or "Khovanschina". Her Eboli is sung tenderly and with many nice nuances, but "Don fatale" is sung in an almost baritonal way - unbelievable.Inquisitor - Luigi Roni
He is a bass. He sings loudly. That's what matters.I may also add, that Giovani Foiani is a very good Monk.It is a crime, that the Bolshoi recorded Carlo only once (in the 1960ies) since if the did it around the time of this recording with these two singers they could have made the best Carlo ever, especially, knowing that there were such singers as Vladimir Atlantov, Yuriy Mazurok, Tamara Milashkina and Alexander Vedernikov for the other roles."
Poor Sound Quality ruins the performance
Patrick A. Bowen | 03/20/2009
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I had high hopes for this recording of Verdi's Don Carlo, but the poor sound quality ruined my entire experience of listening to these 3-CDs. The recording sounds 'old', very old. Also because it is a LIVE recording doesn't help matters. What I find (and found) most annoying was that it didn't flow well and I was having to strain to hear the "voices" due to the poor sound quality of this recording. There are many better recordings of this great Opera available. I can not honestly recommend this one."
A good Don Carlo
M. Dangel | Ft. Myers, FL United States | 07/03/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Overall a good Don Carlo with a few flaws: The sound is somewhat tinny and loudness is variable. Margaret Price as Elisabetta did not have her best night: she hits the notes allright but hardly uses any piano, let alone pianissimo as would have been nice and appropriate especially in the farewell to Countess Ahremberg ("Non piangi..") and her final aria - a bit of a disappointment by her own standard."