Puccini Arias

Puccini Arias

by Eileen Farrell
     
 
Although it might not be readily apparent in the Eileen Farrell bin at your local record store, if there is one, she has been on plenty of CDs, usually in a supporting role rather than as the star. Late in life she recorded a whole series of discs for Reference Recordings, and individual tracks by Farrell are often used in themed compilations of various kinds. But

Overview

Although it might not be readily apparent in the Eileen Farrell bin at your local record store, if there is one, she has been on plenty of CDs, usually in a supporting role rather than as the star. Late in life she recorded a whole series of discs for Reference Recordings, and individual tracks by Farrell are often used in themed compilations of various kinds. But anyone who experienced Farrell in the days of LPs would have thought of her as a Columbia Masterworks artist primarily, and among record companies CBS' successor Sony Classical seems about the least enthusiastic in making her back catalog available. In the whole of the CD era, only two Eileen Farrell re-releases have appeared under the Sony banner: I've Got a Right to Sing the Blues, which highlights her awesome facility with pop material, and the Masterworks Heritage issue Eileen Farrell Sings Verdi. Eileen Farrell: Puccini Arias and Others in the Great Tradition represents Sony's third go-round with Farrell's back catalog, and we'll take it -- hopefully the third time will prove the charm, as everything on here is just splendid. It's funny how devotees of historical sopranos forgive such past singers for quirks that would normally cause them to look down the ends of their noses at a present-day singer exhibiting vocal irregularities in concert -- we forgive Maria Callas for her cottony chest voice and tolerate Leyla Gencer's loopiness. However, Farrell simply doesn't have these kinds of defects; her singing is pure, always flawlessly in tune, rich with characterization, and very, very powerful. Farrell practically pins the listener against the back wall with sheer emotive energy and volume in her rendering of the aria "In questa reggia" from "Turandot" heard here. The recordings, made by CBS in stereo in 1958 and 1959, are fantastic and transferred beautifully on Eileen Farrell: Puccini Arias and Others in the Great Tradition. It also bears a nice appreciation by Farrell's biographer Brian Kellow. About the only thing wrong with Eileen Farrell: Puccini Arias and Others in the Great Tradition is that, while the original front cover image reproduced here features the name of conductor Max Rudolf in its correct spelling, on the back cover it is spelled "Rudolph." A pity, as the quality of Rudolf's conducting goes far beyond what is usually required to accompany a singer. Nevertheless, we'll still gladly take this -- maybe next time Sony will get it right.

Product Details

Release Date:
08/01/2006
Label:
Sony
UPC:
0828767876320
catalogNumber:
78763
Rank:
148135

Tracks

  1. Gianni Schicchi, opera: O mio babbino caro

    1. O mio babbino caro  (02:25)
  2. La bohème, opera: Quando me'n vo' soletta per la via

    1. Quando me'n vo' soletta per la via  (02:10)
  3. La bohème, opera: Sì, mi chiamano Mimì

    1. Sì, mi chiamano Mimì  (04:52)
  4. La bohème, opera: Donde lieta uscì

    1. Donde lieta uscì  (03:07)
  5. La Rondine (The Swallow), opera: Chi il bel sogno di Doretta

    1. Chi il bel sogno di Doretta  (02:42)
  6. Tosca, opera: Non la sospiri

    1. Non la sospiri  (02:40)
  7. Tosca, opera: Vissi d'arte

    1. Vissi d'arte  (03:01)
  8. Madama Butterfly (Madame Butterfly), opera: Spira sul mare

    1. Spira sul mare  (02:52)
  9. Madama Butterfly (Madame Butterfly), opera: Un bel dì vedremo

    1. Un bel dì vedremo  (04:47)
  10. Manon Lescaut, opera: In quelle trine morbide

    1. In quelle trine morbide  (02:18)
  11. Turandot, opera: Tu che di gel sei cinta

    1. Tu che di gel sei cinta  (02:46)
  12. Turandot, opera: In questa reggia

    1. In questa reggia  (05:48)
  13. Alceste (French version), opera in 3 acts, Wq. 44: Grands dieux! Du destin, qui m'accable

    1. Grands dieux! Du destin, qui m'accable  (04:14)
  14. Ah! perfido! . . . Per pieta, non dirmi addio, scena and aria for soprano & orchestra, Op. 65  (12:18)
  15. Fidelio, opera, Op. 72: Abscheulicher, wo eilst du hin?

    1. Abscheulicher, wo eilst du hin?  (06:58)
  16. Der Freischütz, opera, J. 277 (Op. 77): Leise, leise, fromme Weise

    1. Leise, leise, fromme Weise  (07:44)
  17. Der Freischütz, opera, J. 277 (Op. 77): Und ob die Wolke sie verhülle

    1. Und ob die Wolke sie verhülle  (04:58)

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