Puccini: Madama Butterfly (1955 - Karajan) - Callas Remastered Maria Callas
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- Giacomo Puccini (1858-1942): Madama Butterfly / Act One
- 1E soffitto...e pareti (Pinkerton, Goro)02:12
- 2Questa è la cameriera (Goro, Pinkerton, Suzuki, Sharpless)04:15
- 3Dovunque al mondo (Sharpless, Pinkerton, Chorus)04:16
- 4Quale amania vi prende! (Pinkerton, Sharpless, Goro, Chorus)04:02
- 5Ah! Ah! quanto cielo!...Ancora un passo or via (Butterfly, Sharpless, Chorus)03:00
- 6Gran ventura (Butterfly, Pinkerton, Sharpless, Goro, Chorus)03:42
- 7L'imperial Commissario (Butterfly, Pinkerton, Sharpless, Goro, Chorus)02:29
- 8Vieni, amor mio! (Butterfly, Pinkerton, Goro)02:38
- 9Ieri son salita tutta sola (Butterfly, Goro, Comissario, Sharpless, Official Registrar, Chorus)05:05
- 10Ed eccoci in famigila (Butterfly, Suzuki, Pinkerton, Goro, Bonzo, Chorus)05:33
- 11Viene la sera (Butterfly, Pinkerton, Suzuki)03:20
- 12Bimba dagli occhi pieni di malia (Butterfly, Pinkerton)03:37
- 13Vogliatemi bene, un bene piccolino (Pinkerton, Butterfly)07:29
- Act Two
- 14E izaghi e Izanami (Suzuki, Butterfly)07:21
- 15Un bel di vedremo (Butterfly)04:44
- 16C'è Entrate (Butterfly, Sharpless, Butterfly)03:33
- 17Non lo sapete insomma (Butterfly, Sharpless, Goro, Yamadori)01:52
- 18A voi però giurerei fede costante (Butterfly, Sharpless, Goro, Yamadori)03:32
- 19Or a noi (Butterfly, Sharpless)06:09
- 20E questo? e questo? (Butterfly, Sharpless)02:25
- 21Che tua madre dovrà (Butterfly)03:32
- 22Io scendo al piano (Butterfly, Sharpless)01:43
- 23Vespa! Rospo maledetto! (Butterfly, Suzuki, Goro)01:59
- 24Una nave da guerra (Butterfly, Suzuki)02:30
- 25Scuoti quella fronda di ciliegio (Suzuki, Butterfly)05:14
- 26Or vienmi ad adornar (Suzuki, Butterfly)05:10
- 27Coro a bocca chiusa (Humming Chorus)03:09
- 28Oh eh! Oh eh! Oh eh! (Chorus)07:31
- Act Two, conclusion
- 29Già il sole! (Butterfly, Suzuki)02:01
- 30Povera Butterfly! (Suzuki, Sharpless, Pinkerton)02:49
- 31Io so che alle sue ...Oh! l'amara fragranza (Pinkerton, Sharpless)04:02
- 32Addio, fiorito (Pinkerton, Sharpless)01:56
- 33Gllielo dirai?...Premetto (Kate, Suzuki, Butterfly)02:14
- 34Che vuol da me? (Butterfly, Suzuki, Sharpless, Kate)05:41
- 35Come una mosca prigioniera (Butterfly, Suzuki)02:53
- 36Con onor muore (Butterfly, Pinkerton)05:22
Info for Puccini: Madama Butterfly (1955 - Karajan) - Callas Remastered
A famous backstage photo was taken in Chicago after one of just three performances that Callas gave of Madama Butterfly; it shows the soprano in her Japanese costume, snarling furiously at a bailiff who had served a writ on her – the very image of the tempestuous diva. By contrast, in her recording of the role, ‘it is, miraculously,’ as the critic John Osborne observed, ‘the 15-yearold girl and not the great Callas who stands before us.’
Her genius for vocal characterisation finds an apt complement in Herbert von Karajan’s conducting: ‘a wholly sympathetic rendering [that] brings out more of the detail of the score than I have ever heard before’, wrote Gramophone.
Maria Callas, soprano (Butterfly)
Nicolai Gedda, tenor (Pinkerton)
Mario Borriello, baritone (Sharpless)
Lucia Danieli, mezzo soprano (Suzuki)
Renato Ercolani, tenor (Goro)
Mario Carlin, tenor (Yamadori)
Plinio Clabassi, bass (Lo zio Bonzo)
Enrico Campi, bass (Il commissario imperiale)
Luisa Villa, mezzo soprano (Kate Pinkerton)
Orchestra and Chorus of La Scala Milan
Herbert von Karajan, conductor
was born to a Greek family in New York in 1923. Her vocal training took place in Athens, where her teacher was the coloratura soprano Elvira de Hidalgo, who had sung with Enrico Caruso and Feodor Chaliapin. After early performances in Greece, Callas’s international career was launched in 1947 when she performed the title role in Ponchielli’s La Gioconda at the Arena di Verona in Italy.
Her voice defied simple classification and her artistic range was extraordinary. In her early twenties she sang such heavy dramatic roles as Gioconda, Turandot, Brünnhilde and Isolde, but over the course of her career her most famous roles came to be: Bellini’s Norma and Amina (La sonnambula); Verdi’s Violetta (La traviata); Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor and Anna Bolena, Cherubini’s Medea and Puccini’s Tosca. Though her timbre was not always conventionally beautiful, Callas’s musicianship and phrasing were in a class of their own. She brought characters to vivid life with her skill in colouring her tone and making insightful use of the text.
She is credited with changing the history of opera: by placing a perhaps unprecedented emphasis on musical integrity and dramatic truth, and by transforming perceptions – and reviving the fortunes – of the bel canto repertoire, particularly Bellini and Donizetti.
The 1950s marked the height of Callas’s career. Its base lay in the opera houses of Italy, and she became the prima donna assoluta of Milan’s legendary La Scala – notably in the productions of Luchino Visconti – but her operatic appearances also encompassed London’s Royal Opera House, the New York Metropolitan Opera, Paris Opéra, the Vienna State Opera, and the opera houses of Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Lisbon, and, in the early 1950s, Mexico City, São Paolo and Rio de Janeiro.
From 1959, when she started a life-changing love affair with the Greek shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis, her performing career slowed down and her voice became more fragile. Her final stage performances came in 1965, when she was only 42.
There were many plans for a return to the stage – and for further complete recordings – but they never reached fruition, though in 1974 she gave a series of concerts in Europe, North America and Japan with the tenor Giuseppe di Stefano; he had partnered her frequently in the opera house and in the studio, not least in the 1953 La Scala Tosca under Victor de Sabata, considered a landmark in recording history. Callas died alone in her Paris apartment in September 1977.