Review of "Bizet: Carmen"

published 04/04/2008 | operalover2000
Member since : 04/04/2008
Reviews : 20
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About me :
Pro Smooth voiced protagonists, nice sound
Cons Slightly tame Escamillo, maybe lacking in some french style
Quality and consistency of tracks
Cover / Inlay Design and Content
Value for Money

"Great Modern Carmen"

Arguably the best recording of Carmen in the past 30 years. Teresa Berganza has a smooth and warm voice here, rather darker than Victoria de los Angeles (Thomas Beecham conducts, EMI) but smoother and lighter than Maria Callas (Georges Pretre conducts, EMI) and Regine Resnik (Schippers conducts, Decca). Her performance is similarly balanced - dramatic without being too vampish and with that sultry latin quality (a little bit lacking in Victoria de los Angeles in my opinion). She sings with greater precision in the runs and leaps than Resnik and her voice seems like balm after the altogether different instrument of Maria Callas (even at the later's best she growls rather more than Berganaza which you either love or hate). Placido Domingo is a king amongst recent Don Joses on record. Jose Carreras with Karajan may bring more passion to the role but his voice is not in as fine form as Domingo's was in the late 70s and Domingo has a more powerful and arguably beautiful voice than some of the competition (Shicoff, Alagna, Lamberti etc). Domingo has good french altough he has a strong spanish accent, which might distract native speakers. The baritone, Sherrill Milnes has lots of vocal glamour but lacks something in french style. His toreador's song seems a little tame in comparison with that of Robert Merrill, that other famous American baritone, on the older baritone's recording with Leontyne Price as Carmen, Herbert von Karajan conducting. This recording has recently been cut down to midprice and at that level it is a complete steal. The sound is very good and the conducting is dramatic but not forced. Maybe not for purists after 100% french style - they could maybe choose Beecham/EMI or Pretre/EMI both with that fine french-sounding tenor Nicolai Gedda.

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Comments on this review

  • headcase44 published 04/04/2008
    Good review.....Thanks. J.
  • Alican published 04/04/2008
    A good review. Would have given it a higher rating but not knowing much about opera I didn't really learn much about the CD. Perhaps a bit more information about the individual tracks or more basic stuff would be useful. If you edit the review at all pop a note in my guestbook and I'll happily rerate. Alice
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Product Information : Bizet: Carmen

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Product Details

EAN: 28947753421, 4035122652543, 95115309124, 724358550528, 717281200165, 8012719663270, 4026727100317, 724356531826, 90204896714, 7391711010925, 8025726221036, 28942788527, 724356735729, 706301267226, 4600317115167, 8712177053124, 28947576464, 5099996671726, 636943123829, 8007144336141, 4035122651560, 825646829613, 886974462026, 4011790733227, 717281200523, 4035122650068, 699487310025, 94636769622, 22924520723, 28941008824, 9004686190209, 809730780929, 4011222325952, 28942236622, 636943100127, 4035122650921, 8025726119180, 724356841727, 5032636200016, 28944387124, 724355743428, 743213949529, 28941448927, 743212527926, 724355621429, 8021945002012, 28941963628, 35628619921, 5099994821529, 28942744028, 3760003771143, 28947041726, 4006408244196, 8717423034421, 822186051030, 789984600726, 730099600521, 4006408105121, 697833119001, 8554700011979, 8712155075803, 782124329525, 3760003771495, 8012719663010, 72435728712, 7611745651612, 8007068181001, 8014399500883, 3830257410935, 8014399501019, 3298490047347, 8012719663621, 638335201924, 8007068023004, 35628798121, 8011571020030, 7619934190829, 3760003775608


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