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Customer Discussions > Classical Music forum

Best Falstaff on cd?

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Showing 1-13 of 13 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 16, 2012, 6:33:42 AM PST
whats the best cd recording of this opera?

Posted on Nov 16, 2012, 9:17:15 AM PST
[Deleted by the author on Nov 16, 2012, 9:19:14 AM PST]

Posted on Nov 16, 2012, 9:17:56 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 16, 2012, 9:18:59 AM PST
Edgar Self says:
I like Karajan with Tito Gobbi, Nan Merriman, Anna Moffo, Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, and Raimondi. A good "Falstaff" that is even older is with Mario Stabile and the inimitable Salvatore Baccaloni as Pistol. He is a pistol! You should be hearing from the real opera experts here, though.

Posted on Nov 16, 2012, 11:09:54 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 16, 2012, 11:22:57 AM PST
Mandryka says:
Toscanini Salzburg 1937. And Bernstein, with the wonderfully funny Fischer Dieskau -- he was a great comic actor (in Figaro and here)

For a radically challenging point of view you might try Giulini (I very much like Bruson)

There was a time when I seemed to be seeing this opera all the time, it was just often playing in London. Anyway, there was a very enjoyable concert performance I went to with Colin Davis at the Barbican which has come out as and LSO live CD I believe. I haven't heard the CD but if it captures something of the event, it's a goodie.

Has anyone heard Ababdo with Terfel? A friend of mine is always praising it to the skies.

Which is greater, Otello or Falstaff?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012, 12:32:11 PM PST
Mandryka -

The Falstaff is one of my favorite recordings of the work, although I do wish that Terfel would bluster less and sing more. The rest of the soloists are excellent.

That said, I find Falstaff very difficult to enjoy on record - it's an opera that really begs to be seen live.


Posted on Nov 20, 2012, 6:56:13 AM PST
Good God--Fischer-Dieskau as Falstaff?! Surely there's a joke in there that I haven't caught.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 20, 2012, 1:00:36 PM PST
He should have stuck to Ford, a role that he did very well:



Posted on Nov 20, 2012, 1:43:00 PM PST
Mandryka says:
But why don't you like his Falstaff? Have you heard it?

Posted on Nov 20, 2012, 11:53:33 PM PST
Of course I've had the misfortune to hear DF-D's Falstaff.

There was a time that I really bought into his myth as a great singer. He was a very good lieder singer, although I'd take Gerard Souzay over him any day. It was his misbegotten Falstaff and utterly wretched Rigoletto, however, that opened my eyes to the fact that he was positively lousy in Italian opera. I could go all over the place with explanations, but it simply boils down to the fact that while he could be adequate in the lighter baritone roles in German opera, his smoothed out, lieder-oriented style and persona were absolutely at odds with the requirements placed on an Italian baritone.


In reply to an earlier post on Nov 21, 2012, 4:37:17 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 21, 2012, 4:38:30 AM PST
Mandryka says:
I feel really differently and it must show that we're looking for very different things from opera. I'm not really an opera fan in fact, though in the past I used to be.

For me he's lousy in lieder, everything too underlined. He performes the songs rather than expresses them. He's a ham in fact.

But I've enjoyed him in comic roles in opera, most of all in Ponelle's film of Figaro. But also I like his Iago and his Falstaff, as I said. I'm less keen on him in German opera. His hamminess seems to suit opera in fact.

But my view on opera is maybe not to be taken seriously, as I said.

Posted on Nov 21, 2012, 5:36:18 AM PST

like fiser-diesku or not in verdi roles, do you not think in many ways he is the precursor to some of the problems with too light a voice for many of the roles that we have today,
and we get both vocal and physical overacting to make up for this.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 21, 2012, 6:04:58 AM PST
Mandryka, the very essence of a hard-core opera fan is having strongly-held opinions and tending to regard the equally strongly-held opinions of other hard-core fans as crackpot.

Your opinion is certainly as valid as mine. We simply disagree. As you say, we are clearly looking for different things.


In reply to an earlier post on Nov 21, 2012, 6:15:56 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 21, 2012, 6:21:04 AM PST
harold fredericks jr~

Well hardly a precursor. Listen to old recordings and you will find many very light voices among the old master singers. And take a look at the old photos. Now, THERE was overacting!

We are in a desert for full-voiced, all-out Verdi/Puccini singers, but at the same time this is likely to be considered as something of a golden age for Handel/Mozart singers. The latter are being sought and that is what is coming out of universities and academies.

Remember, too, this is the age of the total dominance of the (idiot) director. A young singer, and inded even a fairly well established singer who wants a substantial career simply cannot afford to get a reputation for "difficulty," so singers limply knuckle under the knuckleheaded notions of directors--and designers, too--however stupid.

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Discussion in:  Classical Music forum
Participants:  6
Total posts:  13
Initial post:  Nov 16, 2012
Latest post:  Nov 21, 2012

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