There’s only one Norma in my mind. I’m not an opera expert, I’m sure Callas did a great job of it, but I doubt this particular role will ever be the same for me. You see, I have this performance on DVD. And… Watching Casta Diva nearly brought me to tears, which is a rare thing indeed. If you’re one of those that scoff at Caballé, having never heard her in her prime, listen to this, listen to the entire piece and marvel at the end notes that never seem to stop.Theatre Antique d’Orange, 1974, and the mistral is blowing (as you can see), the audience is screaming (as would I). A magic night. A magic Caballé. Damn, I love that lady.[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kqxjpDyLWP4]
Well, well, well. I hadn’t dawned on me that YouTube was actually being used by Opera-fans as well. Thanks to the Drakmiklos for the tip. Let’s start exploring shall we?I have to start with Wixell. Those of you who now me well, will not be surprised.
Tosca, ‘Te Deum‘. Hum, of course. This isn’t the best I’ve heard him sing, some of it comes out with a vibrato with slightly to high amplitute/low frequency for my ears. But that’s nitpicking. Lovely stuff. Listen to his “throw-back”, the echo of his voice in the auditorium. Wheee! If you haven’t heard him sing the part, here’s a starter.Update: The link above no longer works, but here’s the torture scene from the same recording. You get Caballe as well. A bonus![youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K6U7xZ8CPyU]1979. From Tokyo? With Carreras and Caballe. Same cast as the 1976 Philips recording. Which, incidentially, is the first Opera CD I ever bought. And perhaps still the most listened to.Update: Ah damn, you’ll get a double tap with this first post in the theme. From the same performance, Carreras in ‘E lucevan le stelle‘. By hell! Surprising amount of “body” in the middle registers. Good stuff![youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HMpD5AMXsb0]