Bonynge: Donizetti - Lucia di Lammermoor (3 CD APE)
Bonynge: Donizetti – Lucia di Lammermoor (3 CD APE)

Composer: Gaetano Donizetti
Performer: Joan Sutherland, Luciano Pavarotti
Orchestra: Orchestra of the Royal Opera House
Conductor: Richard Bonynge
Audio CD
Number of Discs: 1
Format: FLAC (image+cue)
Label: Decca
Size: 908 MB
Recovery: +3%
Scan: yes

Lucia – Joan Sutherland
Edgardo – Luciano Pavarotti
Enrico – Sherill Milnes
Raimondo – Nikolai Ghiaurov
Arturo – Ryland Davies
Alisa – Huguette Tourangeau
Normanno – Pier Francesco Poli

Orchestra and Chorus of the Royal Opera House
Covent Garden
Douglas Robinson
Richard Bonynge

Donizetti – Lucia di Lammermoor
CD 01
01. Act I, Scene I. Prelude Percorrete le spiaggie vicine (Normanno)
03. Act I, Scene I. Cruda, funesta smania (Enrico)
04. Act I, Scene I. La pietade in suo favore (Enrico)
05. Act I, Scene II. Ancor non giunse (Lucia)
06. Act I, Scene II. Regnava nel silenzo (Lucia)
07. Act I, Scene II. Quando rapito in estasi (Lucia)
08. Act I, Scene II. Egli s’avanza (Alisa)
09. Act I, Scene II. Sulla tomba (Edgardo fede)
10. Act I, Scene II. Qui di sposa eterna… Ah! Verrano a te sull’aure (Edgardo)

CD 02
01. Act II, Scene I. Lucia fra poco a te verrà (Normanno)
02. Act II, Scene I. Appressati, Lucia… Il pallor, funesto, orrendo (Enrico, L
03. Act II, Scene I. Soffriva nel pianto (Lucia)
04. Act II, Scene I. Che fia (Lucia)
05. Act II, Scene I. Se tradirmi tu potrai (Enrico)
06. Act II, Scene I. Ebben … Di tua speranza (Lucia, Raimondo)
07. Act II, Scene I. Ah! cedi, cedi (Raimondo)
08. Act II, Scene I. Al ben de’tuoi qual vittima (Raimondo)
09. Act II, Scene II. Per te d’immenso giubilo (Coro)
10. Act II, Scene II. Dov’è Lucia (Arturo)
11. Act II, Scene II. Chi mi frena in tal momento (Edgardo)
12. Act II, Scene II. T’allontana, sciagurato (Enrico, Arturo)

CD 03
01. Act III, Scene I. Orrida è questa notte (Edgardo)
02. Act III, Scene I. Qui del padre ancor respira (Edgardo)
03. Act III, Scene II. D’immenso giubilo (Coro)
04. Act III, Scene II. Ah! cessate quel contento (Raimondo)
05. Act III, Scene II. Oh! qual funesto avvenimento (Coro)
06. Act III, Scene II. Oh giusto cielo! … Il dolce suono (Coro, Lucia)
07. Act III, Scene II. Ohimè! sorge il tremendo fantasma (Lucia)
08. Act III, Scene II. S’avanza Enrico (Raimondo)
09. Act III, Scene II. Spargi d’amaro pianto (Lucia)
10. Act III, Scene II. Si tragga altrove (Enrico)
11. Act III, Scene III. Tombe degli avi miei (Edgardo)
12. Act III, Scene III. Fra poco a me ricovero (Edgardo)
13. Act III, Scene III. Oh! meschina! (Coro)
14. Act III, Scene III. Tu che a Dio spiegasti l’ali (Edgardo)

This was Joan Sutherland’s second recording of Lucia, made with an all-star cast in prime vocal condition, and it is a must for those who believe that bel canto opera should live up to its descriptive title: “beautiful singing.” In the 10 years since her first Lucia recording, she had settled more comfortably into the character and become even more expert in the music. Her costars are among the greatest singers of our time, a point that is particularly important in the ensemble singing. Maria Callas is more dramatic, and her Lucia is a must for Callas fans, but this set is a joyful celebration of the glory of the human voice. In purely musical terms it is the best-sung Lucia on record. –Joe McLellan

This is probably one of the top versions of Lucia di Lammermoor, one of Donizetti’s greatest works. The cast displays such stalwarts as Sherrill Milnes, Nicolai Ghiarov, Luciano Pavarotti, and–of course–Joan Sutherland. Richard Bonynge did much background research to create a Lucia more consistent with the composer’s vision of the opera; he also conducted.

Some representative segments of the opera. . . .

A very nice ensemble scene, “Cruda, funesta smania,” features lively singing. Sherrill Milnes’ rich voice is well displayed. The ensemble sings with great spirit.

A nice aria, “Regnava nel silenzio” is followed by a wonderful cabaletta, “Quando, rapito in estasi.” This is one of Joan Sutherland’s signature pieces. Here, she is at the “top of her game.” The aria is smoothly sung. She shows agility and some nice trills. Although her voice is heavier than some other coloratura sopranos, she is most effective and deploys excellent technique and skills. In the cabaletta, she displays nice florid singing the first time through, replete with some nice trills. She also has some fine runs and hits a series of high notes with ease. On the repeat, she sings a trill off a high note (nicely done although not perfectly done). Her technique is excellent and she hits the final high note with ease.

“Chi me frena in tal momento” is one of the all time great ensemble pieces in opera. Pavarotti’s rich and youthful voice sounds splendid. Sutherland’s voice soars above the ensemble. All manner of emotions and thoughts are displayed by the various singers. The voices meld well together for an effective ensemble “feel.”

One of the top cabalettas in all of opera has to be “Spargi d’amaro pianto.” Sutherland sings it well and cleanly. The first time through, her voice and technique are rock solid. She shows off some nice trills and some well executed runs. The repeat is iconic. Good technique, a trill off of a high note, and a well executed final high note. All in all, Dame Joan sparkles.

This is one of the top versions of “Lucia di Lammermoor,” and it stands up well after the intervening decades.

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