Mozart - Impresario / Cosi Fan Tutte (Act 1 scenes)
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Cat No: DVDVAI4385
Number of Discs: 1
WorksCosi fan tutte, K588 (highlights)
Der Schauspieldirektor, K486 (highlights)
These productions of Mozart’s The Impresario (1961) and scenes from Act I of the same composer’s Così fan tutte (1956) are precious mementos of an era when Opera in English opened a new frontier for American opera companies. In New York, the Metropolitan Opera increased their audience for classic operas, the New York City Opera took the lead in presenting American works, while the New York-based NBC Opera television series presented English-language productions of both old and new works from the international repertoire. Those three companies were the training-ground for the performers on this DVD, who uniformly exhibit a firm understanding of opera as theatre.
The two best-known singers of the group are the esteemed American sopranos Eleanor Steber and Phyllis Curtin. Both sopranos favoured a tightly focused vocal production which facilitated clear diction and dramatic thrust. Each was closely associated with and premiered works by important contemporary composers, most notably Samuel Barber (for Steber) and Carlisle Floyd (for Curtin). And they both sang Fiordiligi in the Metropolitan Opera’s landmark English-language production of Così fan tutte: Steber in the production’s premiere in 1951, and Curtin ten years later, making her company debut.
- Eleanor Steber (Madame Warblewell)
- Jacquelynne Moody (Madame Heartmelt)
- John Kuhn (The Impresario)
Orchestra conducted by Arnold Gamson
In English and German • 1961
Così Fan Tutte (Scenes from Act I)
- Phyllis Curtin (Fiordiligi)
- Jane Hobson (Dorabella)
- David Lloyd (Ferrando)
- Mac Morgan (Guglielmo)
- Kenneth Smith (Don Alfonso)
Sung in English • 1956
53 min., B&W.
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