Notes & Reviews:
One of Strauss' most popular operas added to Decca Opera in preparation for Richard Strauss' anniversary in 2014 (150th anniversary of birth).
The Penguin Guide
Jessye Norman's is a commanding, noble, deeply felt performance, ranging extraordinarily wide... she provides the perfect focus for a cast as near ideal as anyone could assemble today. Julia Varady as the Composer brings out the vulnerability of the character, as well as the ardour, in radiant singing. The Zerbinetta of Edita Gruberova adds an extra dimension to previous recordings in the way she translates the panache of her stage performance into purely aural terms for recording. It is a thrilling performance. Paul Frey is the sweetest-sounding Bacchus on record yet, while Olaf BSr as Harlekin and Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau in the vignette role of the Music-Master are typical of the fine team of artists here in the smaller character parts. Masur proves a masterly Straussian and he is helped by the typically warm Leipzig recording, with sound rich and mellow to cocoon the listener, yet finely balanced to allow you to hear the interweaving of the piano as never before, in twentieth-century imitation of a continuo.