Magazine article Opera Canada

La Boheme

Magazine article Opera Canada

La Boheme

Article excerpt

GIACOMO PUCCINI

While it's hard at times to get excited by yet another recording of an old war horse, this new recording of La boheme, starring the opera world's current dream team of Russian soprano Anna Netrebko and Mexican tenor Rolando Villazon, is a pleasant surprise Though well shy of being a definitive recording of Puccini's masterpiece, this release is certainly very good, thanks largely to the youthful ardor and abandon ofVillazon's Rodolfo and the detailed and insightful conducting of Bertrand de Billy.

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Recorded during three live concert performances in Munich in April 2007 with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, this recording will be the soundtrack for a new film of Puccini's classic. While reaping the benefits of live performance, Deutsche Grammophon has not compromised when it comes to recorded sound--and audience noise is blissfully negligible.

These performances were taped a few months before Villazon withdrew from the stage for four months of vocal rest, and here one perhaps sees evidence of fatigue. …

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