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The Very Best of Jussi Björling

Audio Samples

>Verdi, Giuseppe : Rigoletto
>     Questa o quella
>     La donna è mobile
>Verdi, Giuseppe : Il trovatore
>     Ah sì, ben mio
>     Di quella pira
>Verdi, Giuseppe : Un ballo in maschera
>     Di' tu se fedele
>Verdi, Giuseppe : Aida, opera
>     Se quel guerrier io fossi!... Celeste
>Verdi, Giuseppe : Requiem Mass
>     Ingemisco
>Rossini, Gioachino : Stabat Mater
>     Cujus animam
>Donizetti, Gaetano : L' elisir d'amore, opera
>     Una furtiva lagrima
>Ponchielli, Amilcare : La Gioconda
>     Cielo e mar!
>Giordano, Umberto : Andrea Chenier
>     Come un bel dì di maggio
>Giordano, Umberto : Fedora
>     Amor ti vieta
>Cilèa, Francesco : L'arlesiana
>     E la solita storia
>Puccini, Giacomo : Manon Lescaut
>     Donna non vidi mai
>Puccini, Giacomo : La bohème
>     Che gelida manina
>     In un coupé?... O Mimì, tu piú torni
>Puccini, Giacomo : Tosca
>     Recondita armonia
>     E lucevan le stelle
>Puccini, Giacomo : Turandot
>     Nessun dorma
>Mascagni, Pietro : Cavalleria rusticana, opera (melodramma) in 1 act
>     Mamma! quel vino è generoso
>Leoncavallo, Ruggero : Pagliacci
>     Recitar!... Vesti la giubba
>     No, o non son
>Meyerbeer, Giacomo : L'Africaine
>     Mi batte il cor... O paradiso
>Gounod, Charles : Faust
>     Salut! demeure chaste et pure
>Gounod, Charles : Romeo et Juliette
>     Ange adorable
>     Ah! lève-toi, soleil!
>Massenet, Jules : Manon
>     Instant charmant... En fermant les yeux
>     Je suis seul!... Ah, fuyez, douce image
>Bizet, Georges : Carmen, opera
>     La fleur que tu m'avais jetée (Flower Song)
>Bizet, Georges : The Pearl Fishers, opera
>     Je crois entendre encore
>Beethoven, Ludwig van : Adelaide, song Op. 46
>Strauss, Richard : Lieder (4), Op. 27
>Strauss, Richard : Cäcilie
>Rachmaninov, Sergei : Songs (6), Op. 4
>Rachmaninov, Sergei : Songs (12), Op. 21
>Tosti, Francesco Paolo : Ideale, for voice & piano (or orchestra)
>Capua, Eduardo di : O sole mio
>Leoncavallo, Ruggero : Mattinata
>d'Hardelot, Guy : Parce que (Because), for voice & piano (or orchestra)
>Friml, Rudolf : The Vagabond King
>     Only a Rose
>Geehl, Henry Ernest : For you alone
>Offenbach, Jacques : La Belle Helene
>     Uti en skog på berget Ida (Au mont Ida trois déesses)
>Millocker, Carl : The Beggar Student, operetta
>     Nu år jag pank och fågelfri (Ich hab' kein Geld)
>Adam, Adolphe : Cantique de Noel for voice & orchestra ("Minuit, Chretiens," "O Holy Night")

Album Summary

>Verdi, Giuseppe : Rigoletto
>Verdi, Giuseppe : Il trovatore
>Verdi, Giuseppe : Un ballo in maschera
>Verdi, Giuseppe : Aida, opera
>Verdi, Giuseppe : Requiem Mass
>Rossini, Gioachino : Stabat Mater
>Donizetti, Gaetano : L' elisir d'amore, opera
>Ponchielli, Amilcare : La Gioconda
>Giordano, Umberto : Andrea Chenier
>Giordano, Umberto : Fedora
>Cilèa, Francesco : L'arlesiana
>Puccini, Giacomo : Manon Lescaut
>Puccini, Giacomo : La bohème
>Puccini, Giacomo : Tosca
>Puccini, Giacomo : Turandot
>Mascagni, Pietro : Cavalleria rusticana, opera (melodramma) in 1 act
>Leoncavallo, Ruggero : Pagliacci
>Meyerbeer, Giacomo : L'Africaine
>Gounod, Charles : Faust
>Gounod, Charles : Romeo et Juliette
>Massenet, Jules : Manon
>Bizet, Georges : Carmen, opera
>Bizet, Georges : The Pearl Fishers, opera
>Beethoven, Ludwig van : Adelaide, song Op. 46
>Strauss, Richard : Lieder (4), Op. 27
>Strauss, Richard : Cäcilie
>Rachmaninov, Sergei : Songs (6), Op. 4
>Rachmaninov, Sergei : Songs (12), Op. 21
>Tosti, Francesco Paolo : Ideale, for voice & piano (or orchestra)
>Capua, Eduardo di : O sole mio
>Leoncavallo, Ruggero : Mattinata
>d'Hardelot, Guy : Parce que (Because), for voice & piano (or orchestra)
>Friml, Rudolf : The Vagabond King
>Geehl, Henry Ernest : For you alone
>Offenbach, Jacques : La Belle Helene
>Millocker, Carl : The Beggar Student, operetta
>Adam, Adolphe : Cantique de Noel for voice & orchestra ("Minuit, Chretiens," "O Holy Night")
Performers Conductors Ensemble
  • >
Composers

Notes & Reviews:

Björling, like Gigli and Caruso before him, was idolised in his time as the operatic tenor par excellence in the Italian repertoire. He was a superb artist, with a voice of lyric sweetness that could also ring out heroically when needed. Johan 'Jussi' Jonaton Björling was born in Stora Tuna, Sweden, on 5 February 1911. From 1928 Björling studied singing at the Stockholm Conservatory, and on 20 August 1930 he made his operatic debut in a leading role as Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni at the Royal Swedish Opera, Stockholm. He quickly established his career and his international reputation was enhanced through the recordings he made for EMI, initially for the local Swedish branch (sung in Swedish) and later for the international market. He first sang at La Scala, Milan, in 1946 in Rigoletto, and returned five years later for Un ballo in maschera. But it was at the Met in New York that he had his greatest successes from 1938 to the time of his death. Björling's Covent Garden debut took place on 12 May 1939 (Manrico in // trovatore), but he did not return there until March 1960, when, despite suffering from heart trouble, he triumphed as Rodolfo in La bohème. His health continued to deteriorate, and he sang for the last time at a concert in Stockholm on 20 August 1960. Following a severe heart attack, he died on 9 September 1960. Although Björling was not much of an actor on stage, he nevertheless created convincing ` characters through the medium of his voice, over which he had absolute control. Nor was he adept at languages, which partly explains why he failed to receive the recognition he deserved in Italy. But as a tenor he was supreme: the rare ability to add dramatic power to his lyrical voice at will enabled him to sing almost any tenor role in the French and Italian repertoire, in much the same way as Caruso had done before him. This programme includes examples of Björling in his most famous operatic roles and also includes a number of popular songs and operetta arias, all of which were best-sellers when they were first released in the days of 78s and have remained firm favourites ever since.



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Works Details

>Verdi, Giuseppe : Rigoletto :: Questa o quella
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Notes: Small Auditorium of the Stockholm Concert Hall (03/27/1944-03/30/1944)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 11 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1851

>Verdi, Giuseppe : Rigoletto :: La donna è mobile
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 2 min. 11 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1851

>Verdi, Giuseppe : Il trovatore :: Ah sì, ben mio
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 3 min. 17 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1853

>Verdi, Giuseppe : Il trovatore :: Di quella pira
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 1 min. 39 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1853

>Verdi, Giuseppe : Un ballo in maschera :: Di' tu se fedele
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Notes: Small Auditorium of the Stockholm Concert Hall (03/27/1944-03/30/1944)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 17 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1859

>Verdi, Giuseppe : Aida, opera :: Se quel guerrier io fossi!... Celeste
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Notes: Composition written: 1871.
  • Running Time: 4 min. 24 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1871

>Verdi, Giuseppe : Requiem Mass :: Ingemisco
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 4 min. 6 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Written: 1874

>Rossini, Gioachino : Stabat Mater :: Cujus animam
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 4 min. 12 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Written: 1841

>Donizetti, Gaetano : L' elisir d'amore, opera :: Una furtiva lagrima
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 4 min. 9 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Written: 1832

>Ponchielli, Amilcare : La Gioconda :: Cielo e mar!
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 4 min. 15 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1876

>Giordano, Umberto : Andrea Chénier :: Come un bel dì di maggio
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Notes: Small Auditorium of the Stockholm Concert Hall (03/27/1944-03/30/1944)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 14 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1896

>Giordano, Umberto : Fedora :: Amor ti vieta
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Notes: Small Auditorium of the Stockholm Concert Hall (03/27/1944-03/30/1944)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 6 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1898

>Francesco Cilèa (Composer) (1866 - 1950) : L'arlesiana :: E la solita storia
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 4 min. 1 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1897

>Puccini, Giacomo : Manon Lescaut :: Donna non vidi mai
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Notes: Composition written: 1893.
  • Running Time: 2 min. 24 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1893

>Puccini, Giacomo : La bohème :: Che gelida manina
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Thomas Beecham
  • Notes: RCA Victor Studio, Manhattan Center, New York (1956-03-16_1956-03-17&1956-)
  • Running Time: 5 min. 10 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1896

>Puccini, Giacomo : La bohème :: In un coupé?... O Mimì, tu piú torni
  • Performers: Jussi Björling; Robert Merrill
  • Conductor: Thomas Beecham
  • Notes: RCA Victor Studio, Manhattan Center, New York (1956-03-16_1956-03-17&1956-)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 28 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1896

>Puccini, Giacomo : Tosca :: Recondita armonia
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 2 min. 50 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1900

>Puccini, Giacomo : Tosca :: E lucevan le stelle
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 3 min. 8 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1900

>Puccini, Giacomo : Turandot :: Nessun dorma
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Notes: Small Auditorium of the Stockholm Concert Hall (03/27/1944-03/30/1944)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 26 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1926

>Mascagni, Pietro : Cavalleria rusticana, opera (melodramma) in 1 act :: Mamma! quel vino è generoso
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Notes: Small Auditorium of the Stockholm Concert Hall (03/27/1944-03/30/1944)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 50 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic

>Leoncavallo, Ruggero : Pagliacci :: Recitar!... Vesti la giubba
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Renato Cellini
  • Notes: RCA Victor Studio, Manhattan Center, New York (1953-01-10_1953-01-11&1953-)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 57 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1892

>Leoncavallo, Ruggero : Pagliacci :: No, o non son
  • Performers: Leonard Warren (Baritone); Paul Franke (Tenor); Jussi Björling; Victoria de los Angeles (Soprano); Robert Merrill
  • Conductor: Renato Cellini
  • Notes: RCA Victor Studio, Manhattan Center, New York (1953-01-10_1953-01-11&1953-)
  • Running Time: 5 min. 53 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1892

>Meyerbeer, Giacomo : L'Africaine :: Mi batte il cor... O paradiso
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Notes: Composition written: 1864.
  • Running Time: 3 min. 18 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Written: 1864

>Gounod, Charles : Faust :: Salut! demeure chaste et pure
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 4 min. 44 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1856-1859

>Gounod, Charles : Roméo et Juliette :: Ange adorable
  • Performers: Anna-Lisa Björling; Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Notes: Composition written: 1865-71.
  • Running Time: 4 min. 25 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1865-1871

>Gounod, Charles : Roméo et Juliette :: Ah! lève-toi, soleil!
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Notes: Composition written: 1865-71.
  • Running Time: 3 min. 28 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1865-1871

>Massenet, Jules : Manon :: Instant charmant... En fermant les yeux
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 3 min. 50 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1882-1883

>Massenet, Jules : Manon :: Je suis seul!... Ah, fuyez, douce image
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 4 min. 40 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1882-1883

>Bizet, Georges : Carmen, opera :: La fleur que tu m'avais jetée (Flower Song)
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 4 min. sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Written: 1873-1874

>Bizet, Georges : The Pearl Fishers, opera :: Je crois entendre encore
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 3 min. 37 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1863

>Beethoven, Ludwig van : Adelaide, song Op. 46
  • Performers: Harry Ebert (Piano); Jussi Björling
  • Running Time: 6 min. 50 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Written: 1794-1795

>Strauss, Richard : Lieder (4), Op. 27
  • Performers: Harry Ebert (Piano); Jussi Björling
  • Running Time: 3 min. 22 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1894

>Strauss, Richard : Cäcilie
  • Performers: Harry Ebert (Piano); Jussi Björling
  • Running Time: 1 min. 58 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1894

>Rachmaninov, Sergei : Songs (6), Op. 4
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 2 min. 58 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1890-1893

>Rachmaninov, Sergei : Songs (12), Op. 21
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 2 min. 13 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1902

>Tosti, Francesco Paolo : Ideale, for voice & piano (or orchestra)
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 3 min. 23 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Written: circa 1870-1915

>Capua, Eduardo di : O sole mio
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 3 min. 15 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Vocal
  • Written: circa 1900

>Leoncavallo, Ruggero : Mattinata
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Notes: Small Auditorium of the Stockholm Concert Hall (03/27/1944-03/30/1944)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 17 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Vocal
  • Written: 1904

>d'Hardelot, Guy : Parce que (Because), for voice & piano (or orchestra)
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 2 min. 7 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Vocal
  • Written: 1902

>Friml, Rudolf : The Vagabond King :: Only a Rose
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 2 min. 52 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1925

>Geehl, Henry Ernest : For you alone
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 2 min. 3 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1909

>Offenbach, Jacques : La Belle Hélène :: Uti en skog på berget Ida (Au mont Ida trois déesses)
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Notes: Composition written: 1864.
  • Running Time: 3 min. 27 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1864

>Carl Millöcker (Composer) (1842 - 1899) : The Beggar Student, operetta :: Nu år jag pank och fågelfri (Ich hab' kein Geld)
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Notes: Composition written: 1882.
  • Running Time: 1 min. 46 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1882

>Adam, Adolphe : Cantique de Noël for voice & orchestra ("Minuit, Chrétiens," "O Holy Night")
  • Performer: Jussi Björling
  • Conductor: Nils Grevillius
  • Running Time: 5 min. 4 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Vocal
  • Written: 1851