Notes & Reviews:
Reissued for the first time at mid price
The New York Times
No conductor will ever have the last word on Falstaff, and some may feel that Mr. Karajan's approach is a bit too calculating and saturnine for its own good. Still, for tis instrumental beauties and superb cast, the Philips performance should be an enriching experience for everyone who loves this miraculous opera from Verdi's old age.
Against that is the wonderful observation of detail, the extreme delicacy of this most diaphanous score more subtly purveyed perhaps than by any other conductor, here helped, here helped by the often deliberate tempi, and of course by the ultra-refined playing of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. The reparding has the immediacy and clarity of the best digital issues.
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Nielsen: Symphonies Nos. 2 "The Four Temperaments" & 3 "Sinfonia Espansiva" / Alan Gilbert, New York PO (live)
Smetana: The Bartered Bride / Dana Buresova, soprano; Thomas Juhas, tenor; Jozef Benci, bass
Richard Strauss: Der Rosenkavalier / Catherine Carby, Cheryl Barker, Manfred Hemm, Emma Pearson. Opera Australia
Verdi: Oberto / Samuel Ramey, Maria Guleghina, Violeta Urmana, Stuart Neill, Sara Fulgoni - Marriner
Rossini: The Barber of Seville / William Matteuzzi, Cecilia Bartoli, Leo Nucci, Enrico Fissore - Patane
Bizet: Carmen / Magdalena Kozena, Jonas Kaufmann, Genia Kuhmeier, Kostas Smoriginas
Tchaikovsky: Symphonies Nos. 1-3 / London SO, Valery Gergiev
Gliere: Symphony No. 3 (Ilya Muromets); Cello Concerto / Sergei Sudgilovsky, cello
Weber: Der Freischütz; Christine Brewer, soprano; Sally Matthews, soprano; Simon OAENeill, tenor