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Le Nozze di Figaro


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Hey opera fans I need some help. I am a total Mozart nut. I have three older DVD sets of Le Nozze di Figaro.

 

1. London - Sir Georg Solti and the London Philharmonic Orchestra

with Kiri Te Kanawa, Lucia Popp, Frederica von Stade, Samuel

Ramey, Thomas Allen and Kurt Mott, no date

 

2. EMI Classics - Herbert von Karajan and the Vienna Philharmonic

with Erich Kunz, Irmgard Seefried, George London, Elizabeth

Schwarzkopf, and Sena Jurinac, 1952

 

3. EMI - Carlo Maria Giulini and the Philharmonia Orchestra with

Giuseppi Taddei, Anna Moffo, Eberhard Wachter, Elizabeth

Schwarzkipf and Fiorenza Cossoto, 1961 (my absolute favorite)

 

Now guys my question is that if I am looking for something more current WHAT WOULD YOU RECOMMEND?????

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Of the three, I'd take the Giulini as well. And I'd probably stick with it. I'm no fan of Giulini, but that IS an excellent rendering.

 

I haven't heard better, but also haven't been looking so I'll be interested in the suggestions that come up.

 

FWIW if you want a good 2-CD set for the car to keep you awake on a long drive, look for a title called "Thunder and Lightning". (It's on Amazon.com) Before his death, Solti worked with engineers to make a "greatest hits" set of his recordings with CSO. It's glorious.

 

It's two CDs of Solti/CSO playing the "big blows" they were known for. For a classical music lover, it's like high-energy disco. It's everything big and boisterous that we always loved about Sir Georg.

 

Highly recommended for a long drive.

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Guest backbaygayguy

Yes, 3 is a favorite.

 

How about this: Mozart - Le Nozze di Figaro / Sanford Sylvan, Susan Larson, Jeanne Ommerle, Sue Ellen Kuzma, Frank Kelley, Peter Sellars, Craig Smith, Wiener Symphoniker (1990)

 

Can't beat the late Craig Smith and these singers -- even if you don't like the Sellars staging (perhaps the weakest of his 3 da Ponte stagings). Incredible on the small stage at Purchase, but also enjoyed it several times in larger settings.

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I'm assuming you mean "CD sets" not "DVD sets" as I don't think that any of the recordings you mention are on DVD.

 

I very much like live recordings and there are quite a few great sets from radio broadcasts.

 

Another one I would recommend would be the Erich Kleiber set from the 1950s.

 

Another more recent would be the Levine from the mid-90s. I'll look up cast information and such and post later.

 

Mark

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I think you must mean you have those performances on CD, as the Giulini is not on DVD I don't believe. (But I agree that it is a great performance). In fact all those are great performances. I don't know of any recently recorded performances that rival those, but you might find a good live performance. The Met's performances with Fleming and Terfel have been notably good. Keenlyside as the Count, also Harteros as the Countess -- but it might be difficult to find a complete cast of the caliber you are comparing them to.

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Regarding Le Nozze di Figaro, the Giulini has always gotten good press. I personally always liked the old 1950's set with Siepi on Decca.

 

For something up-to-date I might suggest the Harmonia Mundi set under Renee Jacobs. I have not heard it, but it has gotten excellent reviews. Of course Jacobs has a penchant for being unconventional and he uses "Original" insturments... but he is certainly never dull.

 

I have a personal "thing" for Mozart's Don Giovanni and the recent Jacobs set has gotten good reviews as well... I am tempted to purchase it, but would prefer to audition more than the small bits available on various internet sites prior to doing so. I am sure the same caviat applies to Figaro.

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