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Verdi: La Traviata Import


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Audio CD, Import, December 17, 1998
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (December 17, 1998)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Decca Import / London
  • ASIN: B00000I92Y
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #231,034 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Disc: 1
1. La Traviata: Preludio
2. La Traviata: Atto I: Dell' invito trascorsa e gia l'ora?
3. La Traviata: Atto I: Libiamo ne' lieti calici
4. La Traviata: Atto I: Che e cio?
5. La Traviata: Atto I: Un di felice, eterea
6. La Traviata: Atto I: E strano! e strano!
7. La Traviata: Atto I: Follie! Delirio vano e questo... Sempre libera
8. La Traviata: Atto II: Lunge da lei
9. La Traviata: Atto II: De' miei bollenti spiriti
10. La Traviata: Atto II: O mio rimorso!
See all 12 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. La Traviata: A Lover's Farewell
2. La Traviata: The Generation Gap
3. La Traviata: Revenge!
4. La Traviata: Party Time
5. La Traviata: A Game Of Cards
6. La Traviata: Fatal Misunderstandings
7. La Traviata: The End Is Near
8. La Traviata: Too Late!
9. La Traviata: Life Goes On
10. La Traviata: Reunited
See all 12 tracks on this disc

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
5 star
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6
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See all 15 customer reviews
Good sound if somewhat boomy at times.
Michel
Sutherland is simply sublime, Violetta has got to be one of the most difficult roles for a soprano.
CRichards in NYC
Great to get as a refreshingly different interpretation of this over recorded work.
D. J. Marconi

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

33 of 33 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 29, 1999
Format: Audio CD
I can't believe I'm the first to write a review of this recording! There's not much more you can ask in a Traviata than Sutherland, Bergonzi, and Merrill, all in their prime. On the surface, Sutherland's performance lacks the committment Callas consistantly brought to the role. However on repeated listenings, details surface that show Sutherland definitely had more than a vocal sympathy for Violetta. At this point in her career, she herself has said it was her favorite role. Her account of "Dite alle giovine" is shattering when listened to with the right ears. And of course, you have her immaculate vocalism. Set against this great achievement is the Alfredo of Bergonzi, the model Verdi tenor. Even Domingo, an artist I greatly respect and admire, is sometimes vocally incapable of the subtlety Bergonzi had at his command here. He is quite simply the best Alfredo I've heard. As for Robert Merrill, he may not be Tito Gobbi, but his account of Germont is more than adequate and what a voice! The recording is a little over-reverberant, obscuring some detail, but the Decca engineers were still struggling to cope with capturing the "Sutherland sound" in its fullest degree. Pritchard's conducting is generally inspired, only occasionally lapsing into the routine. The final factor in reviewing this recording is the price. As a Decca Double, this recording is a steal, a must have! (And yes, I've heard Decca's latest foray with Solti, Ghiorgiou, etc. It doesn't even come close.) There really is no perfect studio Traviata, but this one comes closer than most.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Boz on October 2, 1999
Format: Audio CD
This is one of Sutherland's truly great recordings. She had the perfect voice for Violetta. Bergonzi is THE best Alfredo on cd.His recording with Caballe is also superb. This is a terrific cd at a terrific bargain price.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Michel on April 29, 2003
Format: Audio CD
Joan Sutherland was at her vocal zenith when she recorded this
first Traviata in 1962. She is perhaps not a natural for the
complex role of Violetta but sing beautifully she could and
does in this set - she is delightfully flirtatious in the first
act and predictably dazzling in 'Sempre libera' - elsewhere
beauty of tone makes up for the lack of dramatic insight and
verbal nuance though she is surprisingly intense in the last
act. Carlo Bergonzi is a superb Alfredo - youthful and ardent -
singing splendidly. Robert Merrill's Germont is a classic -
his voice dark and rich his manner authoritative yet compas-
sionate. The score is presented complete and lovingly conducted
by John Pritchard. Good sound if somewhat boomy at times. A
great bargain!
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By David A. Kemp on March 22, 2004
Format: Audio CD
I don't believe there is any one "best" version of this ever-popular opera, but this is my favorite of recorded Traviatas, and for those who value beautiful singing and state-of-the-art sound, it remains a top choice. It is complete and uncut; it wears supremely well; it has given me, and continues to give me, more musical pleasure than any other Traviata.
La Traviata is really a three-character opera, and here the three principals, Sutherland, Bergonzi, and Merrill, are three of the great voices of the second half of the twentieth century, all singing highly congenial roles, all captured in their vocal primes. None of them was known as an insightful vocal actor who plumbed the psychological depths of a role, and listeners who put that quality foremost are advised to look elsewhere (preferably to one of the memorable Callas performances). What these three principals, and the polished, idiomatic performance of Pritchard and the Florentine chorus and orchestra, provide here in spades, is a convincing demonstration of just how effective and how beautiful a performance of a middle-period Verdi opera like this one can be if it is simply sung correctly by three great voices who sing all the notes that Verdi wrote, and let Verdi do the rest. Sounds absurdly simple, doesn't it? Yet it's remarkable how rarely it is achieved.
Sutherland, the greatest coloratura soprano of modern times, handles with ease the florid requirements of Sempre libera in Act One, turning it into the dazzling coloratura showpiece it was intended to be (and so rarely is), but she also has the vocal horsepower to belt out the great emotional outburst Amami Alfredo in Act Two to stunning effect. Violettas who can do both are few and far between.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful By John Cragg on July 20, 2001
Format: Audio CD
This is a very strange recording of La Traviata. It features, of course, Joan Sutherland in most glorious voice. She puts on a spectacular bravura performance, with virtually flawless technique. Her performance, however, is characterized by an almost total lack of consonants (For instance, "addio" comes out sounding like "aa-eee-oo".) Even vowel sounds sometimes get distorted -- presumably in order to get an even smoother musical flow. Surprisingly, Sutherland also demonstrates just how dramatic such singing can be -- pure sound to express a wide variety of emotions. It is an amazing performance -- it needs to be heard just to see how such intense drama can be achieved with such an approach.
This is all fine, except for two things. First, the sound is somewhat lacking. Especially in Act 1, it sometimes sounds as if Sutherland is singing in an echo chamber. It also makes her middle range sound surprisingly mature -- she was at the beginning of her career when this recording was made of an age where one would expect vocal freshness matching Violetta's vulnerability--she is not the rather broken down cortesan which so many sopranos well on in their careers make her sound. Second, the other principals are using a quite different asthetic. Bergonzi as Alfredo turns in a sterling, rather traditional performance, with words well articulated and designed to have their meaning bring out the drama. Unfortunately, in the duets, the contrast in approach with Sutherland does not enhance things. This contrast is also present in the duets with Germont -- sung more than adequately by Robert Merrill -- though there it matters less since Germont's character and values differ so much from Violetta's.
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