Bellini: Norma (3-CD) – Joan Sutherland, Luciano Pavarotti

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Item: 028947830429


Bellini: Norma (3-CD) – Joan Sutherland, Luciano Pavarotti

Composer: Vincenzo Bellini
Artists: Joan Sutherland, Luciano Pavarotti, Montserrat Caballé, Samuel Ramey, Diana Montague, Kim Begley, Chorus & Orchestra of the Welsh National Opera
Conductor: Richard Alan Bonynge
Number of Discs: 3
Label: Decca
CD Release Date: November 21, 2011

From Gramophone:

“The cast is a very starry one indeed.... There is a stronger sense of authority, “Sediziose voci” has a more matriarchal sternness, “Voci di Guerra” a more chesty emphasis... shunning side-by-side comparison with the sounds of 20 years ago... the flexibility remains virtually unimpaired, and while Sutherland no longer sings “Casta diva” and the “Mira, o Norma” duets in the original keys (as in 1964), she still has a powerful top D to prolong for bars and bars as the climax to the finale of Act I....

“[Caballé] manages rather marvelously to adapt her vocal character to that of the younger woman.... She shades with exquisite poignancy and finesse.

“Pavarotti’s Pollione is clean-cut and vigorous, Ramey’s Oroveso authoritative... The recorded sound is great improvement on the 1965 set.”

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Vincenzo Bellini’s Norma

Bellini’s tragic tale of a tormented priestess caught in a love triangle, first heard in 1831, features one of the greatest bel canto roles in the soprano repertoire. The title heroine’s aria “Casta diva” has become synonymous with this style, which combines a wealth of melody with long legato lines and vocal fireworks.


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