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James Conlon, Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, Luciano Pavarotti, Shirley Verrett, Cornell MacNeil - Puccini: Tosca (2010)

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James Conlon, Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, Luciano Pavarotti, Shirley Verrett, Cornell MacNeil - Puccini: Tosca (2010)

James Conlon, Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, Luciano Pavarotti, Shirley Verrett, Cornell MacNeil - Puccini: Tosca (2010)
NTSC 4:3 (720x480) | Italiano (LinearPCM, 2 ch) | Italiano (DTS, 6 ch) | 127 min+27 min (bonus) | 7.49 Gb (DVD9)
Classical | Label: Decca | Sub: English, Francais, Deutsch, Italiano, Espanol, Chinese | Recorded: 1978

Luciano Pavarotti will always be associated with the role of the painter Cavaradossi in Puccini's Tosca. His interpretations of the arias "Recondita armonia" and "E lucevan le stelle" became two of his greatest hits, which he sang at all his stadium concerts .

Colin Davis, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House - Saint-Saëns: Samson et Dalila (2006/1981)

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Colin Davis, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House - Saint-Saëns: Samson et Dalila (2006/1981)

Colin Davis, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House - Saint-Saëns: Samson et Dalila (2006/1981)
NTSC 4:3 (720x480) | Français (Dolby AC3, 2 ch) | 5.93 Gb (DVD9) | 133 min
Classical | NVC Arts | Sub.: English, Deutsch, Espanol, Francais, Italiano, Portugues, Japanese

Filmed live at Covent Garden's Royal Opera House in 1981, this staging of Camille Saint-Saens's opera takes on one of the Bible's most famous tales. After trying to force the Hebrews to worship his god, the Philistine ruler meets an untimely end at the hands of the prodigiously powerful Samson (Jon Vickers), who leads the Hebrews in a revolt. But beautiful Philistine Dalila (Shirley Verrett) uses her seductive wiles to weaken the strapping hero.

Renato Fasano, I Virtuosi di Roma, Shirley Verrett, Anna Moffo - Gluck: Orfeo ed Euridice (2011)

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Renato Fasano, I Virtuosi di Roma, Shirley Verrett, Anna Moffo - Gluck: Orfeo ed Euridice (2011)

Renato Fasano, I Virtuosi di Roma, Shirley Verrett, Anna Moffo - Gluck: Orfeo ed Euridice (2011)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 611 Mb | Total time: 62:42+66:20 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Sony | # 88697855712 | Recorded: 1965

Shirley Verrett makes a deeply impressive Orfeo, firm and pure in sound, classically restrained in expression; and her "Che farò", at a moderate, beautifully judged speed, is very finely sung, poised and quietly moving. The set is conducted by Renato Fasano, whose pacing of the score shows a very sure touch. The dance music has a grace and lightness, and a stylistic command, that one might not have expected from an orchestra which in those days seemed to be fed chiefly on a diet of Vivaldi.

Aria: 30th Anniversary Edition (2017/1987) [Blu-Ray]

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Aria: 30th Anniversary Edition (2017/1987) [Blu-Ray]

Aria: 30th Anniversary Edition (2017/1987) [Blu-Ray]
BluRay | BDMV | MPEG-4 AVC Video / 34999 kbps / 1080i / 24 fps | 96 min | 33,4 Gb
Audio: Italiano / LPCM Audio / 2.0 / 48 kHz / 2304 kbps / 24-bit
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BluRay-rip | AVC | MKV 1920x1080 / 7 465 kbps / 24 fps | 96 min | 6,48 Gb
Audio: Italiano / PCM / 2ch / 48.0 KHz / 24 bits
Classical | Entertainment One

Imagine that ten of the world's most well-known highly regarded filmmakers were given a free hand to make real any vision. Aria is that history-making film. Sexy, violent, thought-provoking and funny, here is the movie critics raved about, audiences flocked to see, and no one could stop talking about. Includes Bridget Fonda's electrifying film debut, a revealing and breathtaking performance from Elizabeth Hurley, and Theresa Russell as the trigger-happy King Zog of Albania.

Gioachino Rossini Edition 50 CDs [Part 7] - L'assedio di Corinto, Le Comte Ory (2018)

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Gioachino Rossini Edition 50 CDs [Part 7] - L'assedio di Corinto, Le Comte Ory (2018)

Gioachino Rossini Edition 50 CDs [Part 7]: Thomas Schippers, London Symphony Orchestra, Beverly Sills, Shirley Verrett - L'assedio di Corinto; Vittorio Gui, Glyndebourne Festival Orchestra - Le Comte Ory (2018)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 977 Mb | Total time: 52:14+42:07+66:41+56:27+56:23 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Warner Classics | # 0190295611156 | Recorded: 1956, 1974

The most comprehensive edition devoted to Gioachino Rossini marking his 150th anniversary.
Born in 1792, Rossini was the most popular opera composer of his time. Although he retired from the Opera scene in 1829, he continued to compose in other genres, including sacred music, piano and chamber works. He did gather his late works under the ironic title Péchés de vieillesse (Sins of Old Age), which veils a true collection of masterworks.

Julius Rudel, London Symphny Orchestra, Beverly Sills - Donizetti: Anna Bolena (2001)

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Julius Rudel, London Symphny Orchestra, Beverly Sills - Donizetti: Anna Bolena (2001)

Julius Rudel, London Symphny Orchestra, Beverly Sills - Donizetti: Anna Bolena (2001)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 931 Mb | Total time: 64:51+58:11+71:27 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Westminster | # 471 217-2 | Recorded: 1972

Anna Bolena premiered in 1830 and was Donizetti’s first great success–and it remains one of his finest works. Aside from his usual endless fount of melodies, we find through-composed scenes wherein recitative seamlessly melds into arioso and into aria or ensemble. Anna manages to come across as a real character, as does the unfortunate Jane Seymour, who has the (bad) luck to be Henry VIII’s new love; and Henry’s music, too, is composed effectively for this royal villain. Less successfully portrayed but still with a couple of fine arias and some stunning ensemble music is Anna’s brother Percy. He’s an earthbound character but his music is wonderful and difficult (it was composed for the legendary Rubini).

Maurizio Arena, Orchestra of the San Francisco Opera, Shirley Verrett, Placido Domingo - Meyerbeer: L'Africaine (2011)

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Maurizio Arena, Orchestra of the San Francisco Opera, Shirley Verrett, Placido Domingo - Meyerbeer: L'Africaine (2011)

Maurizio Arena, Orchestra and Chorus of the San Francisco Opera, Shirley Verrett, Plácido Domingo - Meyerbeer: L'Africaine (2011)
NTSC 4:3 (720x480) | Francais (LinearPCM, 2 ch) | 194 min | 5,45+6,94 Gb (2xDVD9)
Classical | Label: Arthaus Musik | Sub: Francais, English, Deutsch, Espanol, Italiano | Recorded: 1988

Plácido Domingo as Vasco da Gama and Shirley Verrett as the African queen, whom he has enslaved, star in Giacomo Meyerbeer‘s spectacular grand opera L’Africaine, in a colourfully exotic production by Lotfi Mansouri, under the sensitive musical direction of Maurizio Arena. The visual splendour of Wolfram Skalicki’s designs matches the vocal distinction of the cast in this seldom performed masterpiece. Director Brian Large captured this magical performance from the San Francisco Opera House for video in 1988.

Eve Queler, Opera Orchestra of New York, Shirley Verrett, Alfredo Kraus - Donizetti: La Favorita (2001)

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Eve Queler, Opera Orchestra of New York, Shirley Verrett, Alfredo Kraus - Donizetti: La Favorita (2001)

Eve Queler, Opera Orchestra of New York, Shirley Verrett, Alfredo Kraus - Donizetti: La Favorita (2001)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 635 Mb | Total time: 72:40+68:21 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Gala | # GL 100.588 | Recorded: 1975

Eve Queler has her shortcomings as a conductor. But a conductor's main task is to make a performance happen, to bring all the elements together, and Ms. Queler has been doing this with scrappy determination for 30 years in her role as music director of the Opera Orchestra of New York. Her invaluable mission has been to present concert performances of little-known or problematic operas with the best casts available.

Claudio Abbado, Coro e Orchestra del Teatro alla Scalla - Verdi: Messa da Requiem (1986)

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Claudio Abbado, Coro e Orchestra del Teatro alla Scalla - Verdi: Messa da Requiem (1986)

Claudio Abbado, Coro e Orchestra del Teatro alla Scalla - Verdi: Messa da Requiem (1986)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 332 Mb | Total time: 48:54+40:22 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Deutsche Grammophon | # 415 976-2 | Recorded: 1980

Abbado's Verdi recordings are some of the finest available and this Requiem recording is no expection. Abbado takes a less ferocious approach than say Muti, or Barenboim, balancing the dramatic moments effectively against the more introspective aspects of the score. Ricciarelli is in fine form here, singing with a fine sense of line and intense emotional declamation. Her intonation is perfect. Verrett blends seamlessly with Ricciarelli, making the most of their duet and capturing the intense sadness of much of the writing quite well. Domingo, in his first recording of the part, provides a steady stream of golden tone, effortlessly produced. His emotional temperature runs about right here - not overly dramatic - after all, this is not Aida - but strong feelings kept on a tight rein. Ghiaurov is phenomenal. His gigantic bass somehow anchoring the entire quartet and chorus into an imposing yet gorgeous Verdian soundscape. There are many excellent Verdi Requiem recordings - this is surely one of the very best.

Claude D'Anna, Riccardo Chailly, Orchestra del Teatro Comunale di Bologna, Leo Nucci, Shirley Verrett - Verdi: Macbeth (2007)

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Claude D'Anna, Riccardo Chailly, Orchestra del Teatro Comunale di Bologna, Leo Nucci, Shirley Verrett - Verdi: Macbeth (2007)

Claude D'Anna, Riccardo Chailly, Orchestra del Teatro Comunale di Bologna, Leo Nucci, Shirley Verrett - Verdi: Macbeth (2007)
NTSC 4:3 (720x480) | Italiano (LinearPCM, 2 ch) | (DTS, 6 ch) | 132 min+45 min (bonus) | 5.69+6.30 Gb (2xDVD9)
Classical | Label: Deutsche Grammophon | Sub: Italiano, English, Deutsch, Francais, Espanol, Chinese | Recorded: 1997

Claude D'Anna's film of Verdi's Macbeth is a gloomy affair, stressing the descent into madness of the principal villains. It's acted by the singers of the Decca recording of the opera (with two substitutions of actors standing in for singers) and the lip-synching is generally unobtrusive. The musical performance is superb, conducted by Riccardo Chailly with admirable fire, and sung by some of the leading lights of the opera stages of the 1980s.