I find it interesting how the evaluation of a voice like Christoff's is
so different. I was blessed with seeing all of his Chicago work and have
collected everything I could have his other material. He was unique. I
thought he was the greatest bass I ever heard in person, which IMO says a
lot. Pinza was wonderful but different. He was singing, but Christoff WAS.
There was something else about Christoff that few people have mentioned:
When he was on stage, singing or not...you could feel the greatness flow from
the stage. He brought more than just his voice and acting to the stage. An
undefinable fire that burned hot within exploding without. He was probably a
tightly wound, committed and eccentric artist. Great was the only word that
covers the impressions he made on this opera lover.
There are other performers and artists who have that "greatness" or aura
that emanated from them. I'm sure you will post your choice, but for me there
was never anyone who manned the stage as much as Boris Christoff.