Notes & Reviews:
Giulini (1914 - 2005) was without question one of the greatest conductors of his generation. His opera performances at Covent Garden were landmarks for the company, notably Verdi's Don Carlos, Falstaff, Il trovatore and La Traviata. This 1960 performance of Rossini's sparkling Il barbiere di Siviglia features a stellar cast consisting of a youthful Berganza as Rosina and Alva as The Count. Critic of The Times said of Berganza's Rosina, "She is young, vivacious and Spanish. What more can anyone ask of Rosina?" This is a very rare recording which has never previously been commercially released.
American Record Guide
Berganza, Alva, Corena, and Vinco... sing with better expression and with fuller, richer, and more alluring voices... Berganza has a fuller and more beautiful voice... and offers a more detailed and complete characterization of that spunky girl. Alva, a fine lyric tenor, has a more attractive and more flexible voice... he's also a better vocal actor. Ivor Vinco's huge black bass is more effective in 'La Calumnia'... and Corena expresses Bartolo's predicaments better... audience is clearly enjoying the performance...
For the keen collector... there is always the chance that even the most unpromising recording will turn out to be pure gold; a performance that takes wing and which captures the listener in its spell whatever its sonic or other limitations. The present discs offer just such a recording. Over fifty years old but with sound that, as restored by Paul Baily, is certainly tolerable if little more, it recalls what was obviously an immensely enjoyable evening.
I suspect that from now on it will be the present recording that I will play when I want to experience that thrill that comes from being present at an evening at this most delightful opera when almost everything goes right.
Recording information: The Royal Opera House, London, England (05/21/1960).
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Works DetailsRossini, Gioachino : Barber of Seville (Il barbiere di Siviglia), opera
- Conductor: Carlo Giulini
- Running Time: 86 min. 38 sec.
- Period Time: Romantic
- Form: Opera/Operetta
- Written: 1816