Author: Tracy L. Powell (Bangkok..
Turandot, Puccini's last opera, contains some of the most glorious music that he composed. And this performance does complete justice to the music. It is as close to a perfect performance that is possible. Dame Joan Sutherland, who never performed the role on stage, is as cold as ice as the man-hating princess until Calaf wins her heart. At that moment she transforms into a warm hearted lover. Unfortunately I never saw La Stupenda on stage, but I've always heard that she had a rather large voice. Sure, it wasn't as big as Nillson's, and I don't know how her portrayal would've been in the theater. But in the studio she was perfect. Pavarotti also hadn't performed the role of Calaf when this recording was made but he also knew his character well. He is every inch the ardent prince. Ringing voice and all. His 'Nessun dorma' requires no comment. The role of Liu is sweetly and heartbreakingly sung by Montserrat Caballe (who herself sang Turandot). This recording also...