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Richard Sininger
American Record Guide, September 2013

As Figaro, Gino Quilico displays the animated stage presence and strong lyric baritone…Feller creates a vivid portrayal of the obnoxious Bartolo without overdoing the slapstick, and the ever-reliable Lloyd portrays…Basilio very well…Bartoli…is a totally captivating Rosina.

The Stuttgart Radio Orchestra is conducted ably by Gabriele Ferro. © 2013 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide



James A. Altena
Fanfare, September 2013

…this 1988 production of Il Barbiere from Cologne still remains for my money the best version on DVD for both singing and acting, and one of the best versions in any format. The biggest star of the show…is Cecilia Bartoli…her voice and technique are exquisite. The one other singer who equals her in every way…is Robert Lloyd, whose distinctive, rotund bass maneuvers adroitly through the snares of his aria “La calumnia.”…also very fine…are David Kuebler as Almaviva and Gino Quilico as Figaro.

The camerawork is straightforward and free from distracting agitation and excessive darting about. Conductor Gabriele Ferro leads a pointed, alert account of the score, and the orchestra performs handsomely.

…this is my first choice for Il Barbiere on CD. © 2013 Fanfare Read complete review



Robert J Farr
MusicWeb International, July 2013

The set and production proceed with a natural flow that is a delight in every respect. Not only is the singing notably good in nearly every way with the whole performance being kept on an even keel, there’s brio and zip from Gabrielle Ferro on the rostrum. As to the singing, much focus is on Cecilia Bartolias Rosina in one of her earliest stage assumptions caught in the video format. Add Bartoli’s coloratura facility, her trim figure, facial as well as vocal acting and this is one of her very finest stage performances. Gino Quilico as Figaro is outstanding in his sung and acted portrayal, as good as anybody on record. Robert Lloyd’s…Basilio is finished to perfection by vocal sonority. Edith Kertész-Gabry as Berta sings her aria well. © 2013 MusicWeb International Read complete review



Lynn René Bayley
Fanfare, July 2013

…this is a fast-paced Barbiere with…great singing throughout.

The…cast consists of well-known performers: Cecilia Bartoli…Gino Quilico, and Robert Lloyd as our Rosina, Figaro, and Don Basilio, and they do not disappoint…it’s [Bartoli’s] singing that astonishes and captivates, and that’s what I most prize in any Rosina. Her “Una voce” sounds remarkably light and witty, with outstanding phrasing and coloratura runs…Quilico manages his runs well…Lloyd is, quite simply, astounding, maneuvering his huge bass voice through Basilio’s music with wonderful adroitness and characterization.

Just hearing Gino Quilico’s barber and the freshness of young Bartoli’s voice is worth the price of this disc. © 2013 Fanfare Read complete review



Alan W. Petrucelli
Examiner.com, June 2013

Michael Hampe’s humorous direction of his 1988 live-performance at the Schwetzinger Festspiele stands out with its high tempo that makes for a highly exuberant production. Ezio Firgerios’ appealing stage and Mauro Pagano’s colourful costumes heighten the comic effect. Gabriele Ferro’s direction strikes a beautiful balance between a vibrant orchestral performance and a superb choir. The irresistible Cecilia Bartoli leads a cast that includes Davod Kübler; Gino Quilico and Carlos Feller. © 2013 Examiner.com Read complete review



Janos Gardonyi
The WholeNote, June 2013

This wonderful production from Cologne just proves how successful a performance can be without any directorial updating, added “relevance” or other nonsense that has ruined so many present day productions. Although traditional, it is brilliantly directed by veteran Michael Hampe, but it is the principal singers who make this production unforgettable. The star mezzo, Cecilia Bartoli has distinguished herself as a true Rossini diva both as a dramatic actress (e.g. Desdemona) and here as a delightful comedienne singing with virtuoso brilliance and conquering Rossini’s hair-raising fioraturas with supreme ease. Underneath she has a mischievous trait and hidden fire par excellence so essential for a Rossini heroine. © 2013 The WholeNote Read complete review





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