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James Levine, Teresa Stratas, Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo - Puccini: Il Tabarro; Leoncavallo: Pagliacci [2005/1994]

Posted By: Vilboa
James Levine, Teresa Stratas, Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo - Puccini: Il Tabarro; Leoncavallo: Pagliacci [2005/1994]

James Levine, Teresa Stratas, Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo - Puccini: Il Tabarro; Leoncavallo: Pagliacci [2005/1994]
NTSC 4:3 (720x480) | Italiano (LinearPCM, 2 ch) | (DTS, 6 ch) | (Dolby AC3, 6 ch) | 7.42 Gb (DVD9) | 140 min
Classical | Deutsche Grammophon | Sub: Italiano, English, Deutsch, Francais, Espanol

In 1994, the same Metropolitan Opera put two contrasting pieces of the verismo puzzle side by side—the belated verismo of Puccini’s Il Tabarro and the classic verismo of Leoncavallo’s I Pagliacci, which had reached the stage some twenty-six years earlier.
In this particular production, the Met cast the major roles from strength, featuring the era’s two most renowned tenors in the leading roles. In Il Tabarro, Placido Domingo sings the role of the interloper Luigi with his characteristic golden tone and impassioned acting. The role of the older, jilted husband was sung with impressive power and gravitas by Juan Pons. If there are reservations to be felt about the cast, they might be directed towards the Giorgetta of Teresa Stratas—a great singing actress who knows how to thrill. My complaint is not directed towards any lack of ability or dedication on her part. Rather she perhaps presses a little too hard—turning a believable and human character into a bit of a caricature. Her Giorgetta is a Parisian variety of “white trash”—loud, loose, and lacking in feminine grace or refinement, with chemically damaged red hair to match. Stratas regularly reaches for something guttural in her lower register which reinforces this rather brassy impression and makes her singing at times unlovely. Also, some things which would go unnoticed on the stage spring to mind when viewed with the intimacy of video. Pons, playing the older Michele, is clearly much younger than are Domingo and Stratas, our “young” lovers! A vibrant cameo performance is turned in by Florence Quivar as La Frugola.
Stratas and Pons reappear in I Pagliacci, with Stratas’s Nedda largely being a reprise of her Giorgetta. Pons again does an admirable job, though this time in the far less sympathetic role of Tonio. Luciano Pavarotti, however considerable his vocal assets, is often a bit of a dramatic dud—especially in comparison to the passionate Domingo. And though Pav was no spring chicken in 1994 either, somehow he came across very strongly on this night. Sure, he does sometimes revert to his old “stand and sing” acting style, but there is a dignity in his bearing that makes his Canio all the more human, and when he smears the greasepaint on his face before launching into “Vesti la giubba”, he generates pathos in spades. Dwayne Croft is a convincing Silvio.
It’s a shame the James Levine ventures into the verismo repertory so rarely, as his reading here, at the helm of the now legendary Met orchestra, is revelatory. The productions are of the most traditional variety, with lots of period detail—especially Franco Zeffirelli’s Pagliacci. Other fine accounts of the latter exist on video, but if you’re looking for a compelling pair of verismo shorts in riveting, top notch performances, you could do worse than this DVD. (Eric D. Anderson)

Cast:
Puccini 'Il Tabarro':
Michele - Juan Pons
Giorgetta - Teresa Stratas
Luigi - Plácido Domingo
Il Tinca - Charles Anthony
Il Talpa - Federico Daviа
La Frugola - Florence Quivar
Un venditore di canzonette - Philip Creech
Due amanti - Yvonne Gonzales, Tony Stevenson

Leoncavallo 'Pagliacci':
Canio - Luciano Pavarotti
Nedda - Teresa Stratas
Tonio - Juan Pons
Peppe - Kenn Chester
Silvio - Dwayne Croft
Due contadini - John Handriot, Glenn Bater
Metropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Conductor - James Levine


Puccini - Il Tabarro
01. Opening Credits
02. O Michele? Michele?
03. Dunque, che cosa credi?
04. O eterni innamorati, buona sera!
05. To! guarda la mia vecchia!
06. Hai ben ragione
07. Ho sognata una casetta
08. O Luigi! Luigi!
09. Dimmi: perchè gli hai chiesto
10. Come è difficile esser felici!
11. Nulla! .. Silenzio!
12. T'ho colto!
13. Avevo ben ragione
Leoncavallo - Pagliacci
14. Auftritt Levine
Prologue
15. Prelude
16. "Si può? Signore! Signori!"
Act 1
17. "Son qua! Ritornano"
18. "Un grande spettacolo!"
19. "Un tal gioco, credetemi"
20. "I zampognari!"
21. Qual fiamma avea nel guardo..Stridono lassù
22. Sei lá! Credea che te ne fossi andato
23. "Nedda! Silvio, a quest'ora"
24. "E allor perché, di', tu m'hai stregato"
25. Cammina adagio
26. Derisione e scherno!
27. Recitar! … Mentre preso dal delirio
28. Intermezzo
Act 2
29. Ohè! … Ohè!
30. "Pagliaccio, mio marito"
31. "O Columbina, il tenero fido"
32. "E dessa! Dei, come è bella"
33. "Arlecchin!" / "Colombina!"
34. "Versa il filtro ne la tazza sua!"
35. "No, Pagliaccio non son"
36. "Suvvia, cosi terrible"


James Levine, Teresa Stratas, Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo - Puccini: Il Tabarro; Leoncavallo: Pagliacci [2005/1994]
James Levine, Teresa Stratas, Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo - Puccini: Il Tabarro; Leoncavallo: Pagliacci [2005/1994]
James Levine, Teresa Stratas, Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo - Puccini: Il Tabarro; Leoncavallo: Pagliacci [2005/1994]
James Levine, Teresa Stratas, Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo - Puccini: Il Tabarro; Leoncavallo: Pagliacci [2005/1994]