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Bonynge: Donizetti – Maria Stuarda (2 CD, FLAC)

Bonynge: Donizetti - Maria Stuarda (2 CD, FLAC)
Bonynge: Donizetti - Maria Stuarda (2 CD, FLAC)

Performer: Joan Sutherland, Huguette Tourangeau, Luciano Pavarotti, James Morris, Margreta Elkins
Orchestra: Orchestra del Teatro Comunale di Bologna
Conductor: Richard Bonynge
Composer: Gaetano Donizetti
Audio CD
Number of Discs: 2
Format: FLAC (image+cue)
Label: Decca
Size: 511 MB
Recovery: +3%
Scan: yes

Maria Stuarda, opera
Composed by Gaetano Donizetti
with Huguette Tourangeau, Margreta Elkins, Luciano Pavarotti, James Morris, Roger Soyer, Joan Sutherland
Conducted by Richard Bonynge

Disc 1:
01. Maria Stuarda/Act 1 – Introduzione … Qui S’attenda
02. Maria Stuarda/Act 1 – ”Sì, Vuol Di Francia Il Rege” – ”Ah, Quando All’ara” – ”In Tal Giorno Di Contento”
03. Maria Stuarda/Act 1 – Ah! Quando All’ara Scorgemi
04. Maria Stuarda/Act 1 – Il Tal Giorno Di Contento
05. Maria Stuarda/Act 1 – Ah! Dal Ciel Discenda Un Raggio
06. Maria Stuarda/Act 1 – ”Fra Noi Perchè Non Veggio Leicester?”
07. Maria Stuarda/Act 1 – Hai Nelle Giostre, O Talbo?
08. Maria Stuarda/Act 1 – ”Questa Imago, Questa Foglio” – ”Ah! Rimiro Il Bel Sembiante”
09. Maria Stuarda/Act 1 – ”Sei Tu Confuso?”
10. Maria Stuarda/Act 1 – ”Era D’amor L’immagine”
11. Maria Stuarda/Act 1 – Sul Crin La Rivale La Man
12. Maria Stuarda/Act 2 – ”Allenta Il Piè, Regina”
13. Maria Stuarda/Act 2 – ”O Nube Che Lieve Per L’aria”
14. Maria Stuarda/Act 2 – Nella Pace Del Mesto Riposo
15. Maria Stuarda/Act 2 – ”Ah! Non M’inganna La Gioia!”
16. Maria Stuarda/Act 2 – ”Da Tutti Abbandonata”
17. Maria Stuarda/Act 2 – Ah! Se Il Mio Cor Tremò Giammai
18. Maria Stuarda/Act 2 – ”Qual Loco È Questo?”
19. Maria Stuarda/Act 2 – ”E Sempre La Stessa”
20. Maria Stuarda/Act 2 – ”Deh! L’accogli” – ”Morta Al Mondo, E Morta Al Trono”
21. Maria Stuarda/Act 2 – ”Va, Preparati, Furente”

Disc 2:
01. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – ”E Pensi? E Tardi?”
02. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – Quella Vita A Me Funesta – Regina! A Lei S’affretta
03. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – Ah! Deh! Per Pietà Sospendi
04. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – ”D’una Sorella, O Barbara”
05. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – Vanne, Indegno; T’appare Nel Volto
06. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – ”La Perfida Insultarmi Anche Volea”
07. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – ”Oh Mio Buon Talbot!” – ”Delle Miei Colpe Lo Squallido”
08. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – ”Quando Di Luce Rosea”
09. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – Lascia Contenta Il Carcere
10. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – ”Vedeste? – Vedemmo. Oh Truce Apparato!
11. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – ”Anna! – Qui Più Sommessi Favellate” – ”Deh! Vi Rivedo Alfin”
12. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – ”Deh! Tu Di Un Umile Preghiera”
13. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – ”Oh Colpo!…”
14. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – ”D’un Cor Che Muore Reca Il Perdono”
15. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – ”Giunge Il Conte”
16. Maria Stuarda/Act 3 – ”Ah! Se Un Giorno”


Maria Stuarda is one of Donizetti’s most dramatic operas, alongside with Lucrezia Borgia and Roberto Devereux. Once sung by gorgeous voices and effective singer actresses, it is the proof that Bel Canto is much more than beautiful melodies and difficult coloraturas. The roles of Maria and Elisabetta require not only remarkable voices, but above all great dramatic skills. Indeed, there’s a natural dramatic power in all the masterpieces of Bel Canto, and it can be exciting when a singer like Callas, Sills or Sutherland brings the drama and pathos out of that amazing music!

Joan Sutherland, being a real drammatico d’agilità soprano, has established herself as one of the best interpreters of Maria Stuarda. Her only rivals are Beverly Sills and Montserrat Caballé. However, both Sills and Caballé didn’t have the powerful voice of La Stupenda. Instead of what some people declare about Sutherland’s acting, she succeeds dramatically in all her most important roles. Being a sensitive and stylistically accurate actress, her acting conveys sentimentality and pathos rather than rage and tragic drama, but she can also be a fiery actress at the most intense moments. Here her diction is also very expressive, as she emphasizes every word to great dramatic effect. Just listen to her furious and sarcastic ”Vil bastarda!”, which is enough to make her ”Figlia impura di Bolena” the most terrific on disc!
Sutherland’s voice had become darker and more expressive in 1975. Although it has gained a little more vibrato, there’s little sign of the wobble it would acquire in few years. She shows off many qualities of her miraculous singing: the huge and exuberant sound, the ravishing high notes, the impeccable legato and even the much improved low register. Some highlights of her performance are the rock-solid high note she sings with Pavarotti in ”Se il mio cor tremò giammai”, the incredibly long vocal line she keeps for 22 seconds in “Deh! tu di un umile preghiera” and the heartbreaking final scene.

Luciano Pavarotti is at his peak, singing fantastic high notes with his beautiful bright voice. He also delivers and adequate characterization of Cecil. Actually, with that voice, even if he’d just stand and sing, this would still be a fascinating performance! In fact, the drama is centered on the two rival women, and Huguette Tourangeau does a great job as the Queen Elisabetta. She was kind of a second choice as a mezzo partner for Sutherland, being the first Marilyn Horne. Indeed, their voice blend extremely well, as we can hear in the Confrontation Scene. Her dark toned voice and wide range are ideal to sing Elisabetta, as it handles the difficult music written for the part with ease and conveys the vengeful personality of the role.
This is one of Donizetti’s most exciting operas, and it’s sung by an ideal cast. Three of the most remarkable Bel Canto voices ever were joined in this recording. Besides, the moving music of Maria Stuarda is conducted with mastery and dramaticism. You can’t miss this great opportunity to listen to some Golden Age singing at a mid-priced recording! You will be astonished!

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