Puccini's Greatest Hit - The Ultimate Nessun Dorma

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Eddins
The first impulse is to dismiss this album of 11 versions of "Nessun dorma" as just a pretentious novelty, until you notice that it was put together with at least a little self-mocking tongue-in-cheek awareness of the silliness and grandiosity of the endeavor -- "Hit" is singular, there's the exclamation point at the end of the title, and the conductor from the front cover is pictured curled up asleep on the back cover. Similar compilations including multiple versions of works like Pärt's "Fratres" and Barber's "Adagio for Strings" are presented with utter earnestness. Approached in the spirit of fun in which it was conceived, this album can be a blast. On one level, the...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Eddins
The first impulse is to dismiss this album of 11 versions of "Nessun dorma" as just a pretentious novelty, until you notice that it was put together with at least a little self-mocking tongue-in-cheek awareness of the silliness and grandiosity of the endeavor -- "Hit" is singular, there's the exclamation point at the end of the title, and the conductor from the front cover is pictured curled up asleep on the back cover. Similar compilations including multiple versions of works like Pärt's "Fratres" and Barber's "Adagio for Strings" are presented with utter earnestness. Approached in the spirit of fun in which it was conceived, this album can be a blast. On one level, the album can be perceived as a sort of single meta-minimalist composition, in which the same material is presented repeatedly with subtle and not so subtle variations in each repetition. On a more mundane level, it can be heard simply as an assortment of performances ranging from the...well, you know the drill. At one end of the spectrum is Michael Bolton be very afraid! and a goofy version for the vocal quintet Amici Forever. Along the way, there are some very fine, nuanced performances, including Plácido Domingo's and Ben Heppner's. Perhaps the biggest surprise is the visceral excitement Mario Lanza generates, accompanied by an unnamed orchestra conducted by Ray Heindorf -- it's easily one of the most memorable versions on the album. In a class by itself, though, is the final version, sung by Jussi Bjoerling taken from a 1959 complete recording of "Turandot," with Erich Leinsdorf conducting the Rome Opera Orchestra & Chorus. The intensity and purity of Bjoerling's tone and his unerring dramatic sense make the other very, very fine performances pale in comparison. It's unimaginable having another rendition of the aria follow his, and the producers bring the disc to a very satisfying close with the stirring finale from the complete recording, featuring Birgit Nilsson and the Rome Opera Chorus. A must-have for all Nessun dormaphiles.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/16/2007
  • Label: Rca
  • UPC: 886971704327
  • Catalog Number: 717043
  • Sales rank: 76,873

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Turandot, opera: Act 3. Nessun dorma - Giacomo Puccini & Giuseppe Adami (3:05)
  2. 2 Turandot, opera: Act 3. Nessun dorma - Franco Alfano & Giacomo Puccini (5:16)
  3. 3 Turandot, opera: Act 3. Nessun dorma - Giacomo Puccini & Giuseppe Adami (3:16)
  4. 4 Turandot, opera: Act 3. Nessun dorma - Giacomo Puccini & Giuseppe Adami (3:11)
  5. 5 Turandot, opera: Act 3. Nessun dorma - Giacomo Puccini & Giuseppe Adami (3:14)
  6. 6 Turandot, opera: Act 3. Nessun dorma - Giacomo Puccini & Roberto Abbado (3:09)
  7. 7 Turandot, opera: Act 3. Nessun dorma - Giacomo Puccini & Giuseppe Adami (2:59)
  8. 8 Turandot, opera: Act 3. Nessun dorma - Giacomo Puccini & Giuseppe Adami (3:18)
  9. 9 Turandot, opera: Act 3. Nessun dorma - Giacomo Puccini & Giuseppe Adami (3:13)
  10. 10 Turandot, opera: Act 3. Nessun dorma - Giacomo Puccini & Giuseppe Adami (2:39)
  11. 11 Turandot, opera: Act 3. Nessun dorma - Giacomo Puccini & Erich Leinsdorf (3:22)
  12. 12 Turandot, opera: Act 3. Diecimile anni al nostro Imperatore! - Giacomo Puccini & Erich Leinsdorf (3:03)
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