Puccini: Madama Butterfly (In German) - Rothenberger, Jennings, Fassbaender; de Fabritiis. Hamburg, 1965
Listen to a Sample:
The concept of a German-language Madama Butterfly may sound slightly ridiculous, but in reality it adds only the slightest bit of cognitive dissonance considering that the opera otherwise features Japanese and American characters singing in Italian. This exemplary performance makes a strong case for Puccini in the vernacular, with Anneliese Rothenberger delivering an unexpectedly resonant performance in the title role. Brigitte Fassbaender’s Suzuki is also exemplary, and the flower duet is ravishing. Both Sharpless and Pinkerton (here, according to German tradition, called Linkerton), are, appropriately enough, in the hands of American artists, a hale and hearty Barry McDaniel and a nicely callow Jerry Jennings. Oliviero de Fabritiis lends Italiante style to the proceedings. The sound is impeccable.