Plasson: Bizet - Les Pêcheurs de Perles / The Pearl Fishers (2 CD, FLAC)
Plasson: Bizet – Les Pêcheurs de Perles / The Pearl Fishers (2 CD, FLAC)

Performer: Barbara Hendricks, John Aler, Gino Quilico, Jean-Philippe Courtis, Choeurs du Capitole de Toulouse
Orchestra: Orchestre du Capitole de Toulouse
Conductor: Michel Plasson
Composer: Georges Bizet
Audio CD
SPARS Code: DDD
Number of Discs: 2
Format: FLAC (image+cue)
Label: EMI Classics
Size: 546 MB
Recovery: +3%
Scan: yes

Les Pêcheurs de perles, opera in 3 acts
Composed by Georges Bizet
Performed by Arthur Hammond, Toulouse Orchestra & Chorus
with Jean-Philippe Courtis, John Aler, Barbara Hendricks, Gino Quilico
Conducted by Alain Lanceron, Marcel Seminara, Michel Plasson

Disc: 1
01. The Pearl Fishers: Prelude
02. The Pearl Fishers: Act 1: No 1: Sur la greve en feu
03. The Pearl Fishers: Act 1: No 1: Amis, interrompez vos danses (Zurga) (Nadir)
04. The Pearl Fishers: Act 1: No 1: Demeure parmi nous, Nadir… Sur la greve en feu (Zurga) (Nadir)
05. The Pearl Fishers: Act 1: No 2: C’est toi. toi qu’enfin je revois (Zurga) (Nadir)
06. The Pearl Fishers: Act 1: No 2: Au fond du temple saint (Zurga) (Nadir)
07. The Pearl Fishers: Act 1: No 3: Que vois-je? (Zurga) (Nadir)
08. The Pearl Fishers: Act 1: No 3: Sois la bienvenue
09. The Pearl Fishers: Act 1: No 3: Seule au milieu de nous … Brahma, divin Brahma! (Zurga) (Nadir)
10. The Pearl Fishers: Act 1: No 4: A cette voix (Nadir)
11. The Pearl Fishers: Act 1: No 4: Je crois entendre encora (Nadir)
12. The Pearl Fishers: Act 1: No 5: Le ciel est bleu (Nadir)
13. The Pearl Fishers: Act 1: No 5: O Dieu Brahma (Leila) (Nadir)
14. The Pearl Fishers: Act 2: No 6: L’ombre descend des cieux (Leila)
15. The Pearl Fishers: Act 2: No 7: Me voila seule dans la nuit … comm autrefois (Leila)

Also available:  Bizet: The Complete Orchestral Works (3 CD, FLAC)

Disc: 2
01. The Pearl Fishers: Act 2: No 8: De mon amie fleur endormie (Nadir) (Leila)
02. The Pearl Fishers: Act 2: No 9: Leila! Leila! Dieu puissant (Nadir) (Leila)
03. The Pearl Fishers: Act 2: No 10: Ah! revenez a la raison (Nadir) (Leila) (Zurga)
04. The Pearl Fishers: Act 3: Part 1: No 11: L’orage s’est calme (Zurga)
05. The Pearl Fishers: Act 3: Part 1: No 12: O ciel! quel trouble (Leila) (Zurga)
06. The Pearl Fishers: Act 3: Part 1: No 12: Je fremis, je chancelle (Leila) (Zurga)
07. The Pearl Fishers: Act 3: Part 1: No 12: Entends au loin ce bruit de tete (Leila) (Zurga)
08. The Pearl Fishers: Act 3: Part 2: No 13: Des que le soleil (Nadir)
09. The Pearl Fishers: Act 3: Part 2: No 14: Sombres divinites … O lumiere sainte (Nadir) (Leila)
10. The Pearl Fishers: Act 3: Part 2: No 15: Le jour enfin perce la nue (Nadir) (Leila) (Zurga)
11. The Pearl Fishers: Appendix: No 2: C’est toi, toi qu’enfin je revois … amitie sainte (Nadir) (Zurga)

A lovely reminiscence

I was first exposed to Pearl Fishers in 1991 when I had just started a new job at an opera company and it was one of the first shows that we did when I started. I remember liking it very much. Over the years since then, I have not heard the whole opera, just the most famous arias (which are great of course). Well fast forward 21 years, now working at a different opera company, and we are about to do it this Fall. I wanted to refamiliarize myself with it and WOW, what a wonderful opera! I remember all over again just how much I like it. In addition to those wonderful arias that you always hear, the choral parts are extraordinary and very powerful. I can’t understand why people refer to Pearl Fishers as “Bizet’s other opera”. In my opinion it has just as many beautiful moments as Carmen. I love it. I am not a musician or an expert in the musicality of opera; however, having worked in the business (on the production side) for over 25 years, I think my ears (and my heart) have learned a thing or two about the musical art that is opera. This is a wonderful recording and sounds pure to me. Give it a try and you might just fall in love with “Bizet’s other opera”.

Couldn’t agree more…..

This is certainly one of my favorite opera recordings. I agree with the reviewers who mention that there are few if any “routine” moments in this opera. I am reminded of the taughtness of a work such as “Rigoletto”.

The music is ravishing and the opera abounds with memorable arias and duets….the famous ACTI duet and also “Je Crois…” as well as “Comme Autrefois” and Zurga’a aria.

The choruses are lovely too.

The singers are outstanding as well. Barbara Hendricks can lack a bit of emotion in her singing but does have a ravishing tone and is technically wonderful.

Bizet’s first famous opera is, I think, greatly underrated and deserves a more permanent place in the repertory.

Buy this recording…..

11 Comments

  1. Many thanks. :)
    This is still the Gramophone Guide recommended version.

  2. I have this version on CD and highly recommend it. Nice to see it here.

  3. thanks for sharing and thanks to all for recommeding this set! Cheers from Paris

  4. Thanks! I prefer the 1960 version with Nicolai Gedda, Janine Micheau, Ernest Blanc and Jacques Mars. I play it since I’m 4. Allthough not the best (homogenic) performance. There are some superb parts.

Leave a Reply