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Paul Turok
Turok’s Choice, May 2009

Two Verdi operas are featured. His La Traviata received a fascinating performance at Busetto’s bandbox of an opera theater in 2002. Plácido Domingo conducts the Arturo Toscanini Foundation Chorus and Orchestra, with Stefania Bonfadelli (Violetta), Scott Piper (Alfredo) and Renato Bruson (Germont). Zeffirelli directs. Although the problems of production in a theater that seats 350 are not quite equal to those of Aida in the same place, he handles the party scenes brilliantly. Bonfadelli and Piper are young, appealing and sing well. Bruson is believable in his role but sometimes a bit tremulous. Domingo, not an intense conductor, sets great tempos and accommodates his singers without distorting the score. Excellent video and sound (all three formats) but the English titles are not always grammatical. Over an hour of interesting bonus features are included.





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