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Song Title Artist
Time
Popularity  
30
1
6:47
30
2
1:51
30
3
2:51
30
4
4:48
30
5
2:36
30
6
0:24
30
7
0:55
30
8
0:32
30
9
1:57
30
10
0:17
30
11
0:41
30
12
0:21
30
13
1:06
30
14
1:42
30
15
2:35
30
16
1:22
30
17
0:34
30
18
0:43
30
19
1:15
30
20
2:49
30
21
3:31
30
22
2:41
30
23
3:00
30
24
2:57
30
25
4:48
30
26
2:22
30
27
1:14
30
28
3:10
30
29
1:15
30
30
4:59
30
31
1:40
30
32
3:57
30
33
1:23
Disc 2
30
1
7:52
30
2
3:50
30
3
4:03
30
4
7:31
30
5
4:46
30
6
4:24
30
7
3:32
30
8
2:39
30
9
1:50
30
10
0:53
30
11
4:00
30
12
2:01
30
13
3:19
30
14
1:33
30
15
2:59
30
16
1:30
30
17
3:03
30
18
1:35
30
19
1:32
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Product Details

  • Original Release Date: August 16, 2000
  • Release Date: October 10, 2000
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Decca
  • Copyright: (C) 2000 Decca Music Group Limited
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Total Length: 2:15:55
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B0018OA2YQ
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #631,195 Paid in Albums (See Top 100 Paid in Albums)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Martyn Richard Jones on February 28, 2001
Format: Audio CD
Where has this been hiding for so long? This opera deserves to be placed up alongside the so called greats. The lyricism of the Spanish Zarzuela has often been dismissed by opera snobs as somewhat inferior to the Italian and Italianates, but how wrong can people get, and this is further proof of the quality, breadth and depth of Spanish opera, one that oozes artistry and care, love and passion, reserve and subtleness, intelligence and brilliance.
For me this work (opera in three acts) not only confirms Albeniz as a major operatic composer but places him amongst the greats.
Carlos Alvarez, Placido Domingo, Jane Henschel and Ana Maria Martinez do the honors together with the National Choir of Spain and the Choir of the Community of Madrid Alfonso X "El Sabio".
So "be wise", if you really like opera you will love this.
This work is indeed "a vast and noble achievement".
regards,
martyn_jones@iniciativas.com
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Format: Audio CD
I won't waste the reader's time with a long review, I'll only say that this is stunning music accompanying pretty lame poetry, but it tells a good story when all is said and done. I don't find the work difficult at all, and compare it to the likes of Massenet and other Wagner admirers who also found much to enjoy in Grand Opera, Paris style.
As far as the performance, it is top notch, with folks like Placido Domingo singing their guts out so everyone wins. The orchestra likewise sounds like they are having a great time, because this music is, well, serious in the manner of a great Star Trek episode: Campy and satisfying both because and in spite of the camp, with lots of costumes and big gestures.
This is a great recording when you're wore out on Wagner, not in the mood to auditorily work hard enough for Italian or French, and yet not feeling folksy enough for Vaughan Williams.
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Format: Audio CD
Ok, the libretto is poor (taking far too many liberties on the legend it is based on though that is by no means the only reason) and yes the Spanish cast does roll a few too many R's when singing in English (which is the original language it was written in); but with that said, I found it quite enjoyable. The choruses are stirring, the music is exciting and the orchestrations are quite engaging. While those with Verdian and Puccini preferences will find this work frustrating, if you enjoy the likes of Richard Straus, Bartok, Mahler and Wagner (which heavily influenced this work) you will be pleasantly suprised.
While this is the only version available, the all around quality of the recording is very good.
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Format: Audio CD
As a classical music and opera lover, and as a Spanish music enthusiast, I looked forward to hearing this world-premiere release of an Albeniz opera once thought lost--especially one on the subject of King Arthur. However, after listening to it straight through, I am sorry to say that this is one Spanish work I will probably never really warm up to, and I say that as a listener who is even beginning to like Verdi's "Falstaff", not his most accessible opera.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with either the singing, the playing or the conducting, except for the fact that hardly a word can be understood because the all-Spanish cast is singing in English! The choral and orchestral passages are quite impressive and are (to me) easily the best attributes of the music. The arias, however, sound like a cross between Debussy and Wagner, the sort of music which does not really consist of melodies, just endlessly flowing sung notes. This, no doubt, will impress Wagner lovers as well as fans of Debussy's magnificent but extremely difficult opera "Pelleas et Melisande". "Merlin" is clearly not for lovers of Mozart, Beethoven, Verdi, Puccini, Handel,Gershwin, or even Berlioz. It is a demanding work that isn't "catchy", "melodic", or even moving. It is the sort of musical composition that one can admire, but never really like or love, and even if you love a work like Stravinsky's "The Rite of Spring", you may have a tough time with this one.
However, Placido Domingo, who was the driving force behind getting this work recorded, and who, as Artistic Director of the Los Angeles Opera, is accomplishing wonderful feats in re-discovering long forgotten and/or neglected Spanish opera, is to be congratulated.
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