This is the second fine Don Giovanni we have had within the past year. Like Gardiner (Archiv), Mackerras includes every note Mozart wrote for both the original Prague version and the Viennese revival. Moreover, it is easier than ever for listeners to ‘programme in’ their preferred version: all Prague die-hards have to do is to bypass Don Ottavio’s ‘Dalla sua pace’ in Act I – a beautiful aria, in all conscience, though it holds up the dramatic action at a crucial stage. By coaxing a modern orchestra into a real awareness of period style, Mackerras seems to have the best of both worlds: the playing has admirable liveliness and intensity, and there are none of the intonation problems that so often plague actual period instruments. Mackerras does use natural trumpets, and their rasping sound lends real bite, not least to the overture’s chilling opening chords. In his introductory essay Mackerras argues that Mozart’s Andantes in ‘cut-time’ (ie two beats to the bar) are often taken too slowly.
Sony’s Mozart cycle culminates with this tremendous production, one that witnesses Greek-Russian conductor Teodor Currentzis evoking fear, trembling, and desire from the great Don Giovanni. “Fin ch’han dal vino” is demonic, a fitting cherry on top of this controversial interpretation that forcefully demonstrates the extreme range of Mozart’s talent.
Solti conducted Don Giovanni in nine performances during the 1954 Glyndebourne season : on July 7, 9, 11, 14, 17, 21, 23, 25, 27. These performances of Don Giovanni were Georg Solti's only Glyndebourne appearances. This complete performance was broadcast live from the opera house on 17 July 1954. The source recording is part of the 'Itter Broadcast Collection' held by Lyrita Recorded Edition Trust.
This live recording of Mozart's Don Giovanni inaugurates a series of Mozart operas to be recorded live at the Festspielhaus in Baden-Baden in southwestern Germany, featuring a galaxy of top operatic stars. The performance marks an impressive beginning indeed for the project. The incongruously named Mahler Chamber Orchestra under French Canadian conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin may seem tentative and underpowered to those used to, say, the Vienna Philharmonic, but Nézet-Séguin keeps the music very tightly connected to the singers. The opera stands or falls on the voice and attitude of the seducer Don himself, and the performance of the young Italian bass-baritone Ildebrando d'Arcangelo may come to be seen as a milestone in his career development. He has a low yet lively voice, and he's a completely persuasive Don Giovanni.