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  • Verdi: Otello
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Verdi: Otello


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Audio CD, September 24, 2013
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Verdi: Otello + Bellini: Norma + Wagner
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Product Details

  • Performer: Aleksandrs Antonenko, Krassimira Stoyanova, Carlo Guelfi, Barbara Di Castri, Juan Francisco Gatell, et al.
  • Orchestra: Chicago Symphony Orchestra
  • Conductor: Riccardo Muti
  • Composer: Giuseppe Verdi
  • Audio CD (September 24, 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: CSO Resound
  • ASIN: B00EASFRVU
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #118,856 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Coinciding with the 200th anniversary of Giuseppe Verdi's birthday, CSO Resound releases its second recording with Maestro Riccardo Muti featuring Verdi's second-to-last opera, Otello. Recorded live in concert at Symphony Center in 2011, this album will stand for years to come as a unique benchmark in Verdi performance and interpretation by one of today's finest conductors. Maestro Muti and the CSO's first recording together was a lauded album of Verdi's Messa da Requiem, which won two Grammy Awards.

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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See all 6 customer reviews
And the sound is stunning.
J. L. Carr
The luscious voiced Russian soprano, Krassimira Stayanova is surely the most beautiful and tragic Desdemona since the revered Renata Tebaldi in her best days.
L. Mitnick
This is an absolute must for anyone waiting for an Otello to meet high standards.
Theresa M. Dicioccio

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Three elements in this live recording from 2011 are a given: the astonishing virtuosity of the CSO, the overwhelming effect of the CSO Chorus at full strength - twice as many singers as one would hear in the opera house - and Muti's authority in Verdi. But the same elements were present in his last recording, a Verdi Requiem completely undone by subpar singing. As a vocal challenge, Otello ranks among the most demanding, not just in Verdi but in all opera. Approaching this new recording, I was holding my breath. For anyone impatient for a conclusion, the singing cast is generally quite good enough, combined with every other virtue, to make the project a success. Throwing in the wonderful sonics, this Otello feels like redemption after the ill-fated concert recording that Pavarotti undertook under Solti, even though the solo singing isn't nearly as starry.

To credibly cast the major roles in Verdi and Wagner anywhere in the world, Russian singers (and Eastern Europeans in general) have been a saving grace, but gratitude must be combined with a few concessions - these singers don't sound like traditional Italianate Verdi voices, and for all the passion they exude, it doesn't often feel like Verdian passion. Sometimes these concessions prove too much for me, but not here, with so much glorious music-making to enjoy. The cast consists of singers I've never encountered, with two exceptions.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By J. L. Carr on January 2, 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I attended this Otello in Carnegie Hall and in 50 years of concert/opera going have never been as bowled over as I was during the first 5 min. of this performance. In spite of exciting performances from Levine, etc. at the Met, this was like hearing the score for the first time. Subtleties in the orchestration that I had never heard before were startling to hear. The same for the fantastic CSO Chorus. And this comes through in the wonderful recording. While Antonenko (the Otello) is certainly not a Domingo or Vickers, the ring to his voice and the musicianship certainly make it a memorable performance. And the sound is stunning. And the booklet/libretto is very informative. I got it through an Amazon fulfillment dealer "used" and it was brand new. Highly recommended.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By L. Mitnick on February 22, 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Am not going into a lot of detail here because the opera is so well known and so many recordings of it exist. First of all, the whole show is dominated by Muti, who shapes the opera to such dramatic proportions that, like Toscanini's legendary recording (1947), the conductor himself emerges the real star. The sonics are very powerful here, especially in the Venetian Scene, with the chorus bursting out like an unstoppable force, and the orchestra surpasses any that I've heard on any previous Otello. Alekandrs Antonenko is a dark and mighty Otello, passionate, "off his rocker", and is capable of moments of bombastic fury. Even in the early love duet with Desdemona, there are moments when his passion and love for Desdemona reveal that he is an insanely jealous man.At the conclusion, he is reduced to ashes, and his catharsis becomes almost painful. An overwhelming and towering impersonation. The luscious voiced Russian soprano, Krassimira Stayanova is surely the most beautiful and tragic Desdemona since the revered Renata Tebaldi in her best days. The voice has a liquid flow to it, can soften into a beautiful piano, yet possesses sufficient power to soar out in the Venetian Scene. Carlo Guelfi may not quite rise to the same level as the same level as his two most illustrious colleagues, but his Iago is certainly credible. But in the end, it is Muti who runs this show, and it is Muti who is the real star of the set. The superlative Chicago Symphony Orchestra has hardly ever sounded better. The sheer playing of the music alone makes this recording a must-have. How lucky we are in Chicago to have such a distinguished resident conductor Hopefully, Muti will follow this up with his vivid and compelling "Macbeth" concert performance that followed the following year. Congratulations to all the spectacular musicians who participated in this magnificent recording. There are moments that will glow you away.
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