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Verdi: Otello
Verdi, James Levine, National Philharmonic Orchestra
Verdi: Otello
Genre: Classical
 
  •  Track Listings (20) - Disc #1
  •  Track Listings (15) - Disc #2

Although Verdi was a lifelong lover of Shakespeare, he did not get a Shakespearean libretto that was worthy of his and Shakespeare's art until late in life. Fellow composer and first-class librettist Arrigo Boito lured V...  more »

     
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CD Details

All Artists: Verdi, James Levine, National Philharmonic Orchestra, Plácido Domingo, Renata Scotto, Sherrill Milnes
Title: Verdi: Otello
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: RCA
Release Date: 10/25/1990
Genre: Classical
Style: Opera & Classical Vocal
Number of Discs: 2
SwapaCD Credits: 2
Other Editions: Otello
UPC: 078635295122

Synopsis

Amazon.com
Although Verdi was a lifelong lover of Shakespeare, he did not get a Shakespearean libretto that was worthy of his and Shakespeare's art until late in life. Fellow composer and first-class librettist Arrigo Boito lured Verdi out of retirement with the libretti of Otello and, later, Falstaff, both masterpieces. Age had taken away nothing from Verdi's genius; he rose to the challenge of these libretti with music whose greatness makes one regret that Boito did not go on to King Lear. The title role demands a tenor of great power, and Placido Domingo has it. Renata Scotto's high notes are a bit past their prime, but her characterization of Desdemona is penetrating, and Sherrill Milnes presents a credibly wicked Iago. Levine conducts masterfully. --Joe McLellan

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CD Reviews

Far from the best.....
J. Glass | 03/04/2010
(2 out of 5 stars)

"I used to like this performance, but I have heard several I would consider better and recommend them here:

The Karajan/Del Monaco/Tebaldi....

Karajan's conducting is more distinctive and "rich" for lack of a better word than Levine's. Domingo sounds wimpy and strained and too sane compared to Del Monaco and struggles far more on top. MDM just has the more exciting voice. Tebaldi has a larger richer voice than Scotto and sounds less mannered to my ears. I like Milnes but he is a bit too hammy here.

The Vickers/Serafin/Gobbi/Rysanek

Vickers is a fantastic interpreter and in this early 1960 recording is simply great. No strain on top; steely and soft at the same time. Gobbi is not a favorite voice of mine but he is an unsurpassed vocal actor in great voice and his voice blends very well with Vickers. Rysanek is fine.

P.S. there is also a good one with James McCracken in the title role.

Please do give these a listen before purchasing this one. Most die hard opera fans will tell you the quality of opera has gone down; find out why for yourself before spending your money!!! ;-)"