[Met Performance] CID:173160

Il Trovatore
Metropolitan Opera House, Fri, November 16, 1956

Il Trovatore (287)
Giuseppe Verdi | Salvatore Cammarano
Carlo Bergonzi

Antonietta Stella

Count Di Luna
Robert Merrill

Fedora Barbieri

Nicola Moscona

Maria Leone

Charles Anthony

James McCracken

Calvin Marsh

Max Rudolf

Review 1:

Review of D. M. E. in Musical America

This performance of "Il Trovatore" saw Antonietta Stella and Carlo Bergonzi making their first appearances as Leonora and Manrico. In all truth, they had a difficult assignment, for Fedora Barbieri walked away with the evening's honors, creating a character of real proportions from the meaty part of Azucena.

Miss Stella used her large and smooth voice effectively through most of the role, except for a tendency to be strident and sharp in her top register. Middle and low tones were beautifully formed, and much of her best singing came in soft, lyrical passages, notably in the convent scene of the second act. As the evening wore on she became a more convincing actress, leaving aside some artificial stage clichés and bringing real personal feeling to the tragic evolution of the role.

Mr. Bergonzi's singing was controlled and pleasant throughout, but a tendency towards breathiness spoiled some of its effect. He was a convincing character, particularly as the opera developed and he outgrew an early stiffness on the stage. The "L'onda de' suoni mistici," the duet in the third act, was beautifully matched in tone and ensemble.

Max Rudolf conducted a well-paced performance, also distinguished by clean choral work, to an enthusiastic house.

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