Plácido Domingo accomplishes the rare feat of singing both lead roles on the same night in opera's most popular double-bill. James Levine conducts the tenor in Franco Zeffirelli's classic production, opposite the superb singing actors Tatiana Troyanos, Teresa Stratas, and Sherrill Milnes.
Gaetano Donizetti opera's La Favorita originally had a French libretto and the title La Favorite. One of Donizetti’s finest music dramas, it was written at his peak as an orchestrator. The Italian, and better-known version, evolved two years after the French premiere and has become the more-performed version, exemplified by this famous 1974 recording starring Luciano Pavarotti, Fiorenza Cossotto, Gabriel Bacquier and Nicolai Ghiaurov. Pavarotti's voice has been called "youthful and fresh" on this album. Pavarotti's frequent collaborator Richard Bonynge conducts the Orchestra of the Teatro Comunale, Bologna.
As comparably short operas Cavalleria rusticana and Pagliacci are often billed together, but seldom is the lead tenor making his double role debut as Turiddu and Canio on the same evening. At the 2015 Salzburg Easter Festival Jonas Kaufmann did just that – to rapturous praise. Universally hailed as a coup for Kaufmann, plaudits were also showered on Philipp Stölzl for his innovative compartmentalized staging which included live video projections while referencing the era of black-and-white movies.
2014 marks the 50th anniversary of the start of the relationship between Luciano Pavarotti and Decca a fitting occasion to marvel once again at the sheer quality of the voice of the 20th Century s greatest tenor.
This 27 CD survey reviews the totality of Pavarotti s remarkably intense first decade with Decca. Everything the artist recorded for the company from signing his contract until 1973 is here, allowing critics and collectors and opera lovers once more to appreciate his exceptional achievement in that first decade for the Decca label.