Best Recording of Donizetti's "Maria Stuarda"?

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Best Recording of Donizetti's "Maria Stuarda"?

Hi,

I’m new to this Forum.

I was just wondering what people think is the best recording of Donizetti’s opera “Maria Stuarda”. I am going to the Met “Live in HD” Broadcast at the weekend and wanted to get myself a recording of the work. What do people recommend?

Thanks

RE: Best Recording of Donizetti's "Maria Stuarda"?

Overall but also for the amazing range, stamina and expertise on belcanto, the recording by Joan Sutherland, Pavarotti, Tourangeau and James Morris under Richard Bonynge, in a very bright recording of Decca is, the one to go for.

As an alternative of high order too is the 1971 live recording from La Scala Milan, with Caballe as Maria, Verrett as Elisabetta but with inferior cast for the rest of the roles, under the very able Carlo Felice Cillario (on Opera d'Oro). The recording is compromised too.

Another quite interesting recording is the one with Beverly Sills (she is a quite different case of vocal animal), Eileen Farrell and Stuart Burrows as a very different but viable alternative for the role of Leicester. The conductor is Aldo Ceccato (capable enough to deliver). The recording is good enough (now it exists under the label of Brilliant).

Parla

RE: Best Recording of Donizetti's "Maria Stuarda"?

If you want a bargain and good performance go for the Sills/ Farrel one.

They are both glorious in their part.

Otherwise the above Decca only spoiled with the weird sound of Tourangeau.

RE: Best Recording of Donizetti's "Maria Stuarda"?

Wow, your so lucky,, so nice knowing about your work,, if you only knew,, i really wish and hope that someday i can do the same thing as yours. I hope you can find the best place for recording. wish you luck. hope you find something useful of some reply to your concern.

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RE: Best Recording of Donizetti's "Maria Stuarda"?

My personal preference would the Philips version conducted by Patane with Gruberova as Maria Stuarda, Baltsa as Queen Elisabetta and Araiza as Percy. The Ceccato and Bonynge versions are also recommendable but Sills is very light voiced for Stuarda and the Bonynge set is disfigured by the rather hooty contralto of Huguette Turangeau as the Queen.

RE: her voice

Thanks Caballe for reminding me (and any other interested member) of this fine recording. For me, it is a very "balanced" performance: nothing is really wrong or bad but, with the exception of the wonderful Gruberova, the rest seem less than ideal. Araiza is not that Italianate in his fine otherwise performance and Baltsa cannot avoid some of her histrionics (I also never got attracted to her voice, but she was a great musical personality, a bit a' la Callas). However, the Philips recording is a very viable alternative to the other ones mentioned above.

Parla

RE: Best Recording of Donizetti's "Maria Stuarda"?

A bit off topic but I can't help mentioning the Garanca/Netrebko "Anna Bolena" which is simply stunning if you like Donizetti.

Close to topic the Welsh National Opera are touring all three Donizetti "Tudors" operas this year so if you live in Britain you have a chance to see all of these rarely performed works:

http://www.wno.org.uk/thetudors

Chris

RE: her voice
parla wrote:

Thanks Caballe for reminding me (and any other interested member) of this fine recording. For me, it is a very "balanced" performance: nothing is really wrong or bad but, with the exception of the wonderful Gruberova, the rest seem less than ideal. Araiza is not that Italianate in his fine otherwise performance and Baltsa cannot avoid some of her histrionics (I also never got attracted to her voice, but she was a great musical personality, a bit a' la Callas). However, the Philips recording is a very viable alternative to the other ones mentioned above.

Parla

Hi Parla,

Thank-you rather belatedly for your response. I think many commentators focussed on Araiza's perceived shortcomings. In retrospect I regard him rather more highly now than I did when he was a regular recording artist. He may not have possessed the depth of tone or the warmth of his more illustrious rivals on recordings but his technique and the fluidity of his vocals and individual timbre were special in their own way in my opinion.

Knowing the admiration you have for Maria Callas, I was surprised Ms Baltsa's voice and as you say histrionics, at least on this recording, did not appeal to you. I can't think of another artist who reminds me more of Callas' legacy than her. Certainly not any of the Callas imitators such as Suliotis, Gasdia, Sass or Aliberti.

As a mezzo, of course, Baltsa could never be faltered for trying to be a carbon copy but her somewhat fiery vocals to my mind are not far removed from how Callas may have sang them had she been a mezzo too. Not forgetting that Callas had a more solid chest register.

I know reaction to any voice differs from person to person. I find Baltsa's voice just about the most alluring, sensuously gratifying sound I have ever heard. In the context of this thread I guess it's not quite right for Queen Elisabeth I. I think Baltsa understood this and her characterisation is all the stronger for the absence of sensuality in her portrayal.

RE: Best Recording of Donizetti's "Maria Stuarda"?

Caballe, your very insightful comments are never belated...On the contrary, they are always welcome!

I cannot but agree with your description of Araiza's abilities and advantages. However, I love more Italian tenors in such Italian Operas. Pavarotti has left his indelible mark with his so Italian voice and singing style, at least on me.

Baltsa is a very significant singer of her generation. Her voice has a dramatic effect on some works, but she never managed to embody the actual features of Callas, while her vocal quality never reached any high point of exceptional beauty. However, I always enjoyed her portrayal of Opera heroines at the Opera house. In the studio, rarely, I felt her voice had a major vocal impact, at least on me.

Thanks again for your valuable comments.

Parla

RE: Best Recording of Donizetti's "Maria Stuarda"?

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If

You're still looking, buy the DVD on Erato.

It's a Met performance with DiDonato as Maria and van den Heever as Elizabeth.

Exelent sound and a wonderful surprising performance .

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