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Ralph V Lucano
American Record Guide, September 2013

The performance in Unitel’s “Tutto Verdi” series, recorded in 2012 at Parma’s Teatro Regio, does justice to the opera.

Conductor Battistoni whips up plenty of excitement, and sound and picture are both excellent.

[This version of] Stiffelio is gripping and highly recommended. © 2013 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide

David J. Baker
Opera News, August 2013

This Stiffelio in Parma’s complete Verdi series is both smart and modest. Guy Montavon’s production emphasizes the austerity and the intrusive pressures of a puritanical Protestant community. In a rare display of consensus, conductor Andrea Battistoni pursues similar aims, relying on tight ensemble work and tense understatement.

Roberto Frontali generates the most heat, in the blustery role of…Stankar. Chinese soprano Guanqun Yu…is splendid as a guilt-ridden Lina, deploying a warm Italianate timbre to plaintive effect.

Tenor Roberto Aronica phrases Stiffelio’s lines intelligently and with appealing brightness… © 2013 Opera News Read complete review

Christie Grimstad, April 2013

Francesco Calcagnini’s set and costume designs breathe somber tones of muted grays and realistically aged Gothic columns adding unmatched clairvoyance of Protestant Puritanism alongside splays of Guy Montavon’s poignant staging and prophetic lighting. The bracketing of blocking, shadowing, toning and coloring is exceedingly well done.

Seven principals encircling Stiffelio move the plot forward with dramatic tension that is consuming from beginning to end. The lighter edged tenor Roberto Aronica convinces us of Stiffelio’s unabashed, ecclesiastical loyalties. Lina, sung by Yu Guanqun, is charismatically bold, driven with a confident soprano delivery that is stalwart and assured. Roberto Fronteli’s Stankar is likely to receive the strongest accolades, especially after his impassioned aria, “Ah sì finisca…Oh gioia inesprimibile” in Act III.

Perhaps overlooked in general operatic channels, Stiffelio is riveting, compelling and magnificently stiffened with an exacerbated edge. Guy Montavon’s recalculation of Giuseppe Verdi’s drama lirico has substance and depth definitely worth exploring. © 2013 Read complete review

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