- Gianni Schicchi, opera: O mio babbino caro
- La bohème, opera: Che gelida manina
- La bohème, opera: Sì. Mi chiamano Mimi
- La bohème, opera: O soave fanciulla
- La bohème, opera: Quando me n'vò
- La bohème, opera: Donde lieta uscì
- La bohème, opera: Sono andati?
- La bohème, opera: Che avvien?
- La bohème, opera: Madonna benedetta
- Manon Lescaut, opera: Tra voi, belle
- Manon Lescaut, opera: Donna non vidi mai
- Manon Lescaut, opera: In quelle trine morbide
- Manon Lescaut, opera: Act 3. Intermezzo
- Manon Lescaut, opera: Sola, perduta, abbandonata
- Tosca, opera: Dammi i colori ... Recondita armonia
- Tosca, opera: Mario!... Mario!... Mario!... Son qui!
- Tosca, opera: Ah quegli occhi ... Quale occhio al mondo
- Tosca, opera: Tre sbirri, una carrozza
- Tosca, opera: Vissi d'arte
- Tosca, opera: E lucevan le stelle
- La Rondine (The Swallow), opera: Chi il bel sogno di Doretta
- La Rondine (The Swallow), opera: Dimmi che vuoi seguirmi
- Madama Butterfly (Madame Butterfly), opera: Dipende dal grado di cottura... amore o grillo
- Madama Butterfly (Madame Butterfly), opera: Un bel dì
- Madama Butterfly (Madame Butterfly), opera: Una nave da guerra
- Madama Butterfly (Madame Butterfly), opera: Coro a bocca chiusa (Humming Chorus)
- Madama Butterfly (Madame Butterfly), opera: Addio, fiorito asil
- Crisantemi (Chrysanthemums), elegy for string quartet
- Suor Angelica, opera: Senza mamma
- Gianni Schicchi, opera: Firenze è come un albero fiorito
- Il tabarro (The Cloak), opera: Io voglio la tua bocca
- Le villi, opera: Se come voi piccina io fossi
- Edgar, opera: Orgia, chimera dall'occhio vitreo
- Preludio sinfonico, for orchestra in A major
- Turandot, opera: Signore, ascolta
- Turandot, opera: Non piangere, Liù
- Turandot, opera: Nessun dorma
- Turandot, opera: Tu, che di gel sei cinta
- La fanciulla del West (The Girl of the Golden West), opera: Risparmiate lo scherno ... Ch'ella mi creda
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The booklet for this two-disc compilation refers to Puccini's "uncanny ability in the format of the three-minute aria 'hit'," and what you get here are all the Puccini hits as well as a few that could have been. As a greatest-hits collection, the set is nicely selected and organized. The listener who has heard some Puccini arias or maybe an entire opera or two gets to start with a moment everyone knows and loves: "O mio babbino caro," from "Gianni Schicchi." That aria is sung by the big-voiced and intense Chilean Puccini specialist Cristina Gallardo-Domâs, whose singing inspires divergent reactions. Almost everything else is a safe choice, however, with José Carreras, Kiri Te Kanawa, and Plácido Domingo among the multiply represented singers. Disc 1 is largely filled out by other big hits from "La bohème" and "Tosca," with "Madama Butterfly" filling out much of the beginning of the second disc. From there the program draws the listener into lesser known material; each of Puccini's operas is represented by at least one selection, and the little-known string quartet "Crisantemi" (Chrysanthemums, in a version for string orchestra) and the still rarer student "Preludio Sinfonico" (perhaps a dubious choice, but still distinctively Puccinian) are both included as well. Most of the selections are taken from studio recordings, preferable on this kind of release, and the remastering is consistent. The sole major complaint here is the absence of texts or any description of the action of each aria, but for the intended audience of commuters this may not make a difference. A good choice if your resolution is to get some Puccini arias in your ears.