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Subject: Moffo Thais (really, the Bacquier Thais)
From: Scott Grunow <[log in to unmask]>
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Date:Sat, 25 Feb 2017 19:39:18 -0500
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Hi, all. My CD copy arrived yesterday.


I just listened to it. I would claim it is really the Bacquier Thais. The man is totally into the part; the first act shows some rough vocal moments at the top, but who cares? A complete portrait. He makes that tricky oasis scene work, which too often can verge into sentimentality or, as sometimes the case, the singers here just sing, but not really to each other. One call tell he now loves Thais, but he is still trying to sublimate the violence of his passion through an religio-erotic fascination with her bloody feet. 



 I was also impressed with the Albine of Elisabeth Bainbridge. In the little she has to sing, she shows a powerful, ample contralto; apparently the remastering really picked up her voice well. She was usually cast in comprimaria parts, but the little I heard shows she was worthy of bigger parts. I think she did sing Amneris and Ulrica at Covent Garden. 



Moffo, oy. The remastering picks up every flaw. Actually, when she appears to the tormented Bacquier in the scene before the last one, the echo effect and her vocal instability actually work, but almost on a kind of horror movie level.  


Carreras doesn't characterize his part but he sounds gorgeous. Absolutely gorgeous. 


The remastering picks up the opulent details of Massenet's orchestration in the capable hands of Rudel. 


The set contains no libretto, no centerfold. 


Mezzomaniac





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