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Subject: Re: The best Rigoletto recording
From: tom ponti <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:tom ponti <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Sat, 10 Nov 2018 23:56:51 +0000
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I just listened to some highlights of the Rigoletto you mentioned, and I dare say that both Tibbet and Pons are great. That was probably the same recording I heard many years ago, and very much enjoyed. Then I went on to listen to more of Lily: her last concert at 76 when she still sounds amazing.  Robert Merrill was there that night a mentioned how critics, he and the audience were amazed at how well she sounded. He said that in 1943, before he ever sang at the Met, he stood in the rain for several hours to see Lily in The Barber of Seville, a performance he never forgot. Then I saw a recording of Una voce poca fa the was cleaned up by Moldoror( ?) Whenever this recording was made, it sounded like it was recorded a few years ago. Her singing of this aria is one of the best I ever heard. Her voice sounds richer or more lush, with high notes that never sound squeaky. She has a lot of fun with the aria, but sings it seriously as the composer would wish. There was also a Voix d Or album in which she sings Olympia's aria from the TOF. Again, the sound is excellent, and her voice sounds as in the Barber of Seville aria. There was also a scene from the movie The Girl From Paris, in which sings the Blue Danube Waltz, competing with a jazz band singing in both styles, which was a lot of  fun.  Whatever her vocal flaws Lily was IMO, justifiably, a major singer and star or her era.
________________________________
From: Discussion of opera and related issues <[log in to unmask]> on behalf of James Camner <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Saturday, November 10, 2018 12:37 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [OPERA-L] The best Rigoletto recording

https://www.amazon.com/Verdi-Rigoletto-Tibbett-Pons-Jagel/dp/B000S5A9IU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1541870072&sr=8-1&keywords=Tibbett+Rigoletto

Many excellent Rigoletto recordings to choose from. My top choices are
Warren's on RCA (the studio album led by Cellini with Peerce and Berger,
not the Met broadcast), Stracciari wtih Borgioli and Capsir, (overwhelming
for Stracciari a genuine "golden age" singer who hearkens back to the days
of Caruso) but heads and shoulders above them all is the 1935 Met broadcast
with Panizza leading a superb trio of Tibbett, Pons and Kiepura.

Tibbett was simply bar none, the best Verdi baritone of his generation  (a
generation that included Galeffi and Schwartz) and is at his peak in this
broadcast, Pons is one of only a handful of Gildas (which included
Sutherland) to not sing a Verismo inflected performance that is instead a
bel canto tour de force (her floated long held diminuendo ending of Guatier
Malde is astonishing)  Kiepura is perhaps the most elegant of all recorded
Dukes, singing with delicate grace and modulated sensitivity, another
performance that owes nothing to Verismo. For my money, Panizza is probably
the best of the Rigoletto conductors as well...If this recording were in
better sound it would be no contest, but as it is, for those who can listen
through the din, the performance is peerless:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pO0mftyfP60

James Camner

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