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Cavalleria rusticana

Pietro Mascagni Cavalleria rusticana to a libretto by Giovanni Targioni-Tozzeti and Guido Menasci. Directed 2019 by Luigi Di Gangi & Ugo Giacomazzi at the Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino. Stars Alexia Voulgaridou (Santuzza), Marina Ogii (Lola), Angelo Villari (Turiddu), Devid Cecconi (Compar Alfio), Elena Zilio (Mamma Lucia), and Cristina Pagliai (Una donna). Valerio Galli conducts the Orchestra e Coro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino (Chorus Master Lorenzo Fratini). Set design by Federica Parolini; costume design by Agnese Rabatti; lighting design by Luigi Biondi. Directed for TV by Matteo Ricchetti; sound recording by Rino Trasi and Vera Zanotti. Released 2019, disc has 5.1 dts-HD Master Audio sound. Grade: NA

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Il Castello di Kenilworth

Donizetti Il Castello di Kenilworth opera to a libretto by Andrea Leone Tottola. Directed 2018 by Maria Pilar Pérez Aspa with assistant director Federico Bertolani at the Donizetti Opera Festival. Stars Jessica Pratt (Elisabetta), Carmela Remigio (Amelia), Xabier Anduaga (Leicester), Stefan Pop (Warney), Dario Russo (Lambourne), and Federica Vitali (Fanny). Ricardo Frizza conducts the Orchestra Donizetti Opera and the Coro Donizetti Opera (Chorus Master Fabio Tartari). Set design by Angelo Sara; costume design by Ursula Patzak with assistant costume designer Nika Campisi; lighting design by Fiammetta Baldiserri. Directed for video by Adriano Figari and Matteo Ricchetti. Sound recorded by Rino Trasi and Giuseppe Famularo. Released 2019, disc has 5.1 dts-HD Master Audio sound. Grade: NA

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Nino Rota Double Bill

Nino Rota opera double feature directed 2017 by Cesare Scarton at the Reate Festival.

  1. La notte di un nevrastenico (The Night of a Neurotic) to a libretto by Riccardo Bacchelli. Stars Giorgio Celenza (The Neurotic); Carlo Feola (The Consierge); Daniele Adriani (The Commendatore); Sabrina Cortese (She); Antonio Sapio (He); Vincenzo Carni (A Floor Boy/Hotel Staff); Maria Rita Combatteli, Lucia Filaci, Siri Kval Ødegård; Mariangela De Vita, and Giacomo Nanni (Hotel Staff).

  2. I due timidi (The Two Timid Ones) to a libretto by Suso Cecchi D’Amico. Stars Giorgio Celenza (Narrator), Sabrina Cortese (Mariuccia), Daniele Adriani (Raimondo), Chiara Osella (Mrs. Guidotti), Antonio Sapio

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La Favorite

Donizetti La Favorite opera to a libretto by Alphonse Royer,  Gustave Vaëz, and Eugène Scribe. Directed by Ariel García-Valdés with co-director Derek Gimpel at the Gran Teatre del Liceu di Barcellona. Stars Veronica Simeoni (Léonor de Guzman), Celso Albelo (Fernand), Mattia Olivieri (Alphonse XI, King of Castile), Ugo Guagliardo (Balthazar), Manuel Amati (Don Gaspar), Francesca Longari (Inès), Leonardo Sgroi (Un Seigneur), and extras Paolo Arcangeli, Cristiano Colangelo, Domenico Nuovo, and Pierangelo Prziosa. Fabio Luisi conducts the Orchestra and Chorus of the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino (Chorus Master Lorenzo Fratini). Set and costume design by Jean-Pierre Vergier; lighting design by Dominique Borrini. Directed for TV by Matteo Ricchetti. Sound recorded by Rino Trasi. Released 2018, disc has 5.1 dts-HD Master Audio sound. Grade: NA

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Che originali! & Pigmalione

Che originali! and Pigmalione opera double feature directed and staged 2017 by Roberto Catalano at the Fondazione Donizetti in Bergamo.

  1. Giovanni Simone Mayr Che originali! to libretto by Gaetano Rossi. Stars Bruno de Simone (Don Febeo), Chiara Amarù (Donna Aristea), Leonardo Cortellazzi (Don Carolino), Angela Nisi (Donna Rosina), Omar Montanari (Biscroma), Gioia Crepaldi (Celestina), and Pietro Di Bianco (Carluccio).

  2. Gaetano Donizetti Pigmalione to libretto by Simeone Antonio Sografi. Stars Antonio Siragusa (Pigmalione), and Aya Wakizono (Galatea).

Gianluca Capuano conducts the Orchestra dell'Accademia Teatro alla Scala (assistant conductor Roberto Frattini). Set design by Emanuele Sinisi; costume design by Ilaria Ariemme; lighting design by Alessandro Andreoli. Directed for TV by Matteo Ricchetti. Released 2018, disc has 5.1 dts-HD Master Audio sound. Grade: NA

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La Fanciulla del West

Puccini La Fanciulla del West opera to a libretto by Guelfo Civinini and Carlo Zangarini. Directed 2017 by Hugo de Ana. Stars Emily Magee (Minnie), Roberto Aronica (Dick Johnson), Claudio Sgura (Jack Rance), Bruno Lazzaretti (Nick), John Paul Huckle (Ashby), Gianfranco Montresor (Sonora), Paolo Orecchia (Sid), Antonello Ceron (Trin), Tommaso Barea (Bello), Orlando Polidoro (Harry), Enrico Cossutta (Joe), Ivan Marino (Happy), Donato Di Gioia (Larkens), Enrico Marchesini (Billy Jackrabbit), Alessandra Visentin (Wowkle), Carlo Checchi (Jake Wallace), Francesco Musinu (José Castro), and Armando Valentino (Un Postiglione). Juraj Valčuha conducts the Orchestra e Coro del Teatro di San Carlo (Chorus Master Marco Faelli). Sets and costumes by Hugo de Ana; lighting by Vinicio Cheli; video direction by Tiziano Mancini. Released in 2018, disc has 5.1 dts-HD Master Audio sound. Grade: NA

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Il Borgomastro di Saardam

Donizetti Il Borgomastro di Saardam opera to libretto by Domenico Gilardoni. World première video recording directed by Davide Ferrario in 2017 at the Fondazione Donizetti Festival in Bergamo, Italy.  Stars Giorgio Caoduro (The Tsar), Juan Francisco Gatell (Pietro Flimann), Andrea Concetti (Wambett), Irina Dubrovskaya (Marietta), Aya Wakizono (Carlotta), Pietro Di Bianco (Leforte), Pasquale Scircoli (Alì Mahmed), and Alessandro Ravasio (An Officer). Roberto Rizzi Brignoli (with Assistant Conductor Roberto Frattini) conducts the Orchestra Donizetti Opera and the Coro Donizetti Opera (Chorus Master Fabio Tartari).

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Fedora

Umberto Giordano Fedora opera to a libretto by Arturo Colautti. Directed by Rosetta Cucchi at the Teatro Carlo Felice in Genova (assistant director Stefania Panighini). Stars Daniela Dessì (Fedora), Fabio Armiliato (Loris), Alfonso Antoniozzi (De Siriex), Daria Kovalenko (Olga), Margherita Rotondi (Dimitri), Manuel Pierattelli (Desirè), Alessandro Fantoni (Baron Rouvel), Luigi Roni (Cirillo), Claudio Ottino (Boroff), Roberto Maietta (Gretch), Davide Mura (Lorek), Sirio Restani (Lazinski), and Sebastiano Carbone (Peasant Boy). Valerio Galli conducts the Orchestra and Chorus of the Carlo Felice Theatre (Chorus Master Patrizia Priarone). Set design by Tiziano Santi; light design by Luciano Novelli, costume design by Claudia Pernigotti. Video Director was Matteo Ricchetti. Released 2017, disc has 5.1 dts-HD Master Audio sound. Grade: NA

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L'incoronazione di Dario

 

Vivaldi L'incoronazione di Dario opera to a libretto by Adriano Morselli. Directed by Leo Muscato at the Teatro Regio Torino. Stars Carlo Allemano (Dario), Sara Mingardo (Statira), Delphine Galou (Argene), Riccardo Novaro (Niceno), Roberta Mameli (Alinda), Lucia Cirillo (Oronte), Veronica Cangemi (Arpago), Romina Tomasoni (Flora), and Cullen Gandy (Ombra di Ciro/Oracolo di Apollo). Ottavio Dantone conducts the Orchestra Teatro Regio Torino and plays harpischord. Sets and costumes by Accademia Albertina di Belle Arti di Torino; choreographic movements and assitance to director by Alessandra di Angelis; light design by Alessandro Verazzi; techincal direction by Paolo Giacchero; video direction by Mattero Ricchetti and Adriano Figari. Released 2017, disc has 5.1 dts-HD Master Audio sound. Grade: NA

This is a complicated piece that will require a substantial investment of time to enjoy. Richard Lawrence, writing in the February 2018 Gramophone at page 93, tries, and miserably fails, to explain in 3 long paragraphs what going on here. He finally gives up and concludes, "I enjoyed this a lot." Sounds like an intriguing early-music adventure for fans of Rubik's Cube.

Don Carlo

Verdi Don Carlo opera to a 4-act libretto by Joseph Méry and Camille du Locle. Directed 2016 by Cesare Lievi as part of the Verdi Festival, Teatro Regio di Parma. Stars Michele Pertusi (Philip II, King of Spain), José Bros (Don Carlo, Infante of Spain), Vladimir Stoyanov (Rodrigo, Marchese di Posa), Ievghen Orlov (Grand Inquisitor), Serena Farnocchia (Elisabetta di Valois), Marianne Cornetti (Princess Eboli), Lavinia Bini (Tebaldo, Elisabetta’s Page), Gregory Bonfatti (Conte di Lerma), and Marina Bucciarelli (Celestial Voice). Daniel Oren conducts the Filarmonica Arturo Toscanini and the Chorus of the Teatro Regio di Parma (Chorus Master Martino Faggini). Sets and costumes designed by Maurizio Balò; lighting by Andrea Borelli. Released 2017, disc has 5.1 dts HD Master Audio sound. Grade: NA

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Rosmonda d'Inghilterra

Donizetti Rosmonda d'Inghilterra opera to libretto by Felice Romani. Directed 2016 by Paolo Rota [named apparently misspelled "Paola" on back cover above] at the Teatrto Donizetti in Bergamo. Stars Jessica Pratt (Rosmonda), Eva Mei (Leonora), Dario Schmunck (Enrico), Nicola Ulivieri (Clifford), and Raffaella Lupinacci (Arturo). Sebastiano Rolli conducts the Orchestra Donizetti Opera. Set and lighting design by Nicolas Bovey; costumes by Massimo Cantini Parrini; assistant direction by Irene Petris; assistent costume design by Jessica Zambelli; video direction by Matteo Ricchetti. Released 2017, disc has 5.1 dts-HD Master Audio sound. Grade: NA

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Olivo e Pasquale

Donizetti Olivo e Pasquale opera to a libretto by Jacopo Ferretti. 1827 Neapolitan Version revised by Maria Chiara Bertieri for the Donizetti Foundation. Directed 2016 by Ugo Giacomazzi and Luigi Di Gangi of operAlchemica. Stars Bruno Taddia (Olivo), Filippo Morace (Pasquale), Laura Giordano (Isabella), Pietro Adaini (Camillo), Matteo Macchioni (Le Bross), Edoardo Milletti (Columella), Silvia Beltrami (Matilde), and Giovanni Romeo (Diego). Federico Maria Sardelli conducts the Orchestra dell'Accademia Teatro alla Scala and the Coro Donizetti Opera (Chorus Master Fabio Tartari). Set and costume design by Sara Sarzi Sartori, Daniela Bertuzzi, and Arianna Delgado; light design by Luigi Biondi; video direction by Matteo Riccheti. Released 2017, disc has 5.1 dts-HD Master Audio sound. Grade: NA

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Francesca da Rimini

Saverio Mercadante Francesca da Rimini opera to libretto by Felice Romani. Directed 2016 by Pier Luigi Pizzi at the Palazzo Ducale as part of the Festival della Valle d'Itria, Martina Franca, Italy. Stars Leonor Bonilla (Francesca), Aya Wakizono (Paolo), Merto Süngü (Lanciotto), Antonio Di Matteo (Guido), Larisa Martinez (Isaura) and Ivan Ayon Rivas (Guelfo). Fabio Luisi conducts the Orchestra Internazionale d’Italia and the Chorus of the Transylvania State and Philharmonic Orchestra of Cluj-Napoca (Chorus Master Cornel Groza). Set and costumes by Pier Luigi Pizzi; choreography by Gheorghe Iancu; first ballerina was Letizia Giuliani; video direction by Matteo Ricchetti. Released 2017, disc has 5.1 dts-HD Master Audio sound. Grade: NA

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Armida

Rossini Armida opera to libretto by Giovanni Schmidt. Directed 2015 by Mariame Clément at the Vaanderen Opera House. Stars Carmen Romeu (Armida), Enea Scala (Rinaldo), Robert McPherson (Gernando/Ubaldo), Dario Schmunck (Goffredo/Carlo), Lenoard Bernad (Idraote/Astarotte), and Adam Smith (Eustazio). Alberto Zedda conducts the Vaanderen Opera House Symphony Orchestra and Opera Chorus (Chorus Master Jan Schweiger). Set and costume design by Julia Hansen; lighting by Bernd Purkrabek; directed for video by Jan Bosteels. Released 2017, disc has 5.1 dts-HD Master Audio sound. Grade: NA

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Roberto Devereux

Donizetti Roberto Devereuxopera to libretto by Salvadore Cammarano. Directed 2016 by Alfonso Antoniozzi at the Teatro Carlo Felice. Stars Mariella Devia (Elisabetta, Queen of England), Sonia Ganassi (Sara, Duchess of Nottingham), Stefan Pop (Roberto Devereux), Mansoo Kim (Lord Duke of Nottingham), Alessandro Fantoni (Sir Gualtiero [Walter] Raleigh), Matteo Armanino (a page), and Loris Purpura (a servant of Nottingham). Francesco Lanzillotta conducts the Orchestra and Chorus of the Teatro Carlo Felice (Chorus Master Pablo Assante). Set design by Monica Manganelli; lighting design by Luciano Novelli; costumes by Gianluca Falaschi; directed for video by Matteo Ricchetti. Released 2016, disc has 5.1 dts-HD Master Audio sound. Grade: NA

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