Saturday, 21 January 2012

Tosca, Metropolitan Opera House 1956

Jussi Bjorling as Cavaradossi
So far as I know this is the earliest in-house recording from the Met, made most likely from the prompter's box as he is audible throughout. It is notable for capturing Jussi Bjorling's earliest live Cavaradossi, and together with Zinka Milanov he would record the complete opera in stereo for RCA in 1957. The preserved extracts are most of acts 1 and 2 - both start from Cavaradossi's entrance and run through the end of each act. The sound is extremely variable, parts are not bad at all, but sections towards the end of act 2 are pretty dreadful. Both Jussi and Zinka are on top form though and I think it's worth persevering with.


Metropolitan Opera House
April 4, 1956


TOSCA
Tosca...................Zinka Milanov
Cavaradossi.............Jussi Bj├Ârling
Scarpia.................Walter Cassel
Sacristan...............Gerhard Pechner
Spoletta................Alessio De Paolis
Angelotti...............Clifford Harvuot
Sciarrone...............George Cehanovsky
Shepherd................Rosalind Elias
Jailer..................Calvin Marsh

Conductor...............Dimitri Mitropoulos
https://rapidshare.com/files/3785693567/1956ToscaAct1.mp3
https://rapidshare.com/files/3338737423/1956ToscaAct2.mp3

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