Puccini: Tosca

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Barnes & Noble - EJ Johnson
This Tosca is Andrea Bocelli's second recording of a complete opera, following his La Bohème, and as before, the popular tenor proves an able operatic leading man. He sings Cavaradossi's big arias -- "Recondita armonia," "E lucevan le stelle" -- with supple phrasing, emotional warmth, and the relaxed, natural-sounding voice that is his signature. The last-act "E lucevan" is arguably his finest moment, featuring some well-sustained soft high notes, and he carries off this moving plea dramatically but without resorting to the excessive histrionics of others, although some may find his portrayal undercharacterized. Bocelli's partner, the Italian lyric soprano Fiorenza ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - EJ Johnson
This Tosca is Andrea Bocelli's second recording of a complete opera, following his La Bohème, and as before, the popular tenor proves an able operatic leading man. He sings Cavaradossi's big arias -- "Recondita armonia," "E lucevan le stelle" -- with supple phrasing, emotional warmth, and the relaxed, natural-sounding voice that is his signature. The last-act "E lucevan" is arguably his finest moment, featuring some well-sustained soft high notes, and he carries off this moving plea dramatically but without resorting to the excessive histrionics of others, although some may find his portrayal undercharacterized. Bocelli's partner, the Italian lyric soprano Fiorenza Cedolins, makes a compelling Tosca, fiery and ardent and possessing a rich, potent voice, though, like her costar, she also floats some beautifully soft high notes. Her "Vissi d'arte," sensitively sung, is a touching highlight in the stirring and lurid second act. Carlo Guelfi is persuasive as the dastardly tyrant Scarpia, and in the small role of Angelotti, the escaped prisoner, the marvelous baritone Ildebrando D'Arcangelo proves a luxurious piece of casting. For the multitude of Bocelli fans who have yet to discover the wonders of Tosca, here's a fine introduction; indeed, the synopsis in the accompanying booklet -- with descriptive captions and extra explanatory text -- seems aimed at novices. Those in the know will still point to Callas and di Stefano's legendary recording as the ultimate Tosca. They may be right, but there ought to be room for Cedolins and Bocelli, too.
All Music Guide - Allen Schrott
This is not just another "Tosca"; it is Andrea Bocelli's "Tosca," made possible by the genre-bending popularity of his solo albums. But that fact doesn't make it an empty star vehicle. In fact, it is pretty good. Zubin Mehta delivers a fluid and well-paced reading, and the relatively obscure cast is committed to the job at hand, both vocally and dramatically. Fiorenza Cedolins is an outstanding heroine, delivering a colorful, engaging, and beautiful performance that is only occasionally marred by vocal harshness. Carlo Guelfi is pitch-perfect as the Baron Scarpia, bringing biting menace to the role while avoiding caricatured villainy. The supporting roles are capably sung, often with character, and the Coro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino delivers a polished performance. This leaves the star, Bocelli, who seems out of place in this company. To be clear: it's not his voice, although he does lack the ringing, stentorian quality one expects from a Puccini tenor, and there are moments where his channel sounds "punched up" at the mixing board. He delivers his two arias well enough, and he has the stuff to deal with the basic vocal demands placed on him. But his singing is boring, shapeless, verbally flat, and missing the dramatic engagement that makes the rest of the cast so good. He seems unaware that opera is more than pleasingly modulated tones delivered on time and on pitch. And there is so much more. For that reason, this is a hard recording to recommend. But it will probably sell well, and those who buy it will end up hearing Puccini done well.
Boston Globe - Richard Dyer
[Bocelli] sings the romantic, doomed hero Cavaradossi with ardor, shapely phrasing, clear diction, and the tear-in-the-voice quality of tone that has endeared him to millions.... [H]e vocalizes the role more skillfully -- and certainly sings it with more heart -- than several other Cavaradossis on record.... He is well partnered by an outstanding young Italian soprano, Fiorenza Cedolins, as the Roman diva.... [S]he creates character and drama by singing off the words, in the great, almost vanished Puccini tradition.

[Bocelli] sings the romantic, doomed hero Cavaradossi with ardor, shapely phrasing, clear diction, and the tear-in-the-voice quality of tone that has endeared him to millions.... [H]e vocalizes the role more skillfully -- and certainly sings it with more heart -- than several other Cavaradossis on record.... He is well partnered by an outstanding young Italian soprano, Fiorenza Cedolins, as the Roman diva.... [S]he creates character and drama by singing off the words, in the great, almost vanished Puccini tradition.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/6/2003
  • Label: Decca
  • UPC: 028947371021
  • Catalog Number: 000017112

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Tosca, opera - Zubin Mehta & Giacomo Puccini (113:20)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Andrea Bocelli Primary Artist
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