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Cat. No. CHAN 3017(2) Price: £18 No. of discs: 2
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CHAN 3017 - Donizetti: Mary Stuart
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Mary Stuart. CHAN 3017

'Dame Janet Baker chose this opera as her farewell to the operatic stage in London in 1982, understandably when the role of the tragic queen was one of her most powerful assumptions. Her deeply moving performance, with her voice ringing gloriously, is well known the joyful mood of her opening aria is powerfully transformed into anger as she confronts queen Elizabeth. That leads to resigned dedication as she sings her prayer in the last scene. Rosalind Plowright in her prime makes an excellent, statuesque foil as Elizabeth . And the other principals are first rate too the young John Tomlinson as Talbot, David Rendall a ringing tenor as Leicester and Alan Opie characterful as Cecil. Sir Charles Mackerras as conductor strongly underlines the drama of the piece.'

Penguin Guide to Compact Discs
Reviews

How fortunate we are to have this live recording…
BBC Music Magazine

‘Dame Janet Baker’s mastery of acting with vocal colour and intensity, not histrionics, ensure that … Queen Mary is both moving victim and formidable rival.’
Classic FM Magazine on CHAN 3017

‘This was a role which suited her vocal timbre and personality admirably, and that warm, unique voice was in superb condition. How fortunate we are to have this live recording made at one of the performances.’
BBC Music Magazine on CHAN 3017

That the performance is so satisfying is due on large part to the way Charles Mackerras conducts Donizetti’s score, pacing dramatic action nicely, and handling the large choruses with authority. English National Opera’s Chorus and Orchestra are on to form. This is a highly enjoyable English-language performance…
BBC Music Magazine

Baker is unquestionably the star… and the orchestra responds well to the versatile Mackerras
Classic CD

‘Here are Janet Baker and Rosalind Plowright firing on all cylinders as the rival queens of Scotland and England … Charles Mackerras is the superb conductor; would that he had given us more Donizetti while at the Coliseum.’
The Times on CHAN 3017

 

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