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Penguin Guide, January 2009

The Naxos recording from Budapest brings bright, urgent singing and playing under Pier Morandi. The early orchestral works (Crisantemi also provided material for Manon Lescaut) make an attractive bonus. An outstanding bargain.

Lee Milazzo
American Record Guide, October 2002

"The performances are first rate. Pier Giorgio Morandi, longtime first oboe at La Scala and assistant to Riccardo Muti, emphasizes both the lyricism and the drama in the Mass, almost making us believe it is a major work, while his readings of the two orchestral pieces have an admirable flow and rich sound. Tenor Antonello Palombi is a find, for he displays a strong, darkish timbre, with a firm spin from top to bottom. He knows how to sing, too, as he demonstrates in the 'Agnus Dei'. Baritone Gunnar Lundberg seems less at home in this music, which requires a delicate balance of restraint and expression. Excellent sound, and overall a worthwhile glimpse of lesser Puccini."

George Hall
BBC Music Magazine, May 2002

"This highly musical account, managed simply and without affectation, undeniably presents the piece positively, with a good range of colours deployed by the Hungarian Opera Orchestra (excellent strings) and idiomatic as well as affectionate conducting from Pier Giorgio Morandi. Also drawn on in Manon Lescaut, it's by far the best thing here, and receives a stylish performance. Rich sound."

Robert Baxter
Courier-Post, March 2002

"Pier Giorgio Morandi leads the Hungarian Radio Choir and Hungarian Opera Orchestra in a vibrant performance of this tuneful, handsomely orchestrated score. Some of the music soars on the melodic wings that make Puccini's operas so popular. Tenor Antonello Palombi sings fervidly... Two appealing orchestral works round out this attractive release."

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