Gounod: Faust - Burrows, Te Kanawa, Treigle, Allen, Begg; Mackerras. London, 1974


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This magnificent recording of Faust compiles four outstanding singers at very different stages of their careers. As the new-comers, we have Kiri Te Kanawa as Marguerite and Thomas Allen as Valentin. Te Kanawa's soprano is radiant and captures both the character's youth as well as her nascent sensuality. Thomas Allen delivers a virile Valentin, and if he seems a notch underpowered he makes up for it with beauty of tone. In the title role Stuart Burrows, already an established artist at Covent Garden, sings with ardor and security. Norman Treigle displays his legendary acting chops to great affect, taking a character that can seem in other hands two dimensional, and giving him a rich and credible inner life. His voice is somewhat past his prime but he manages the demands of the part very well nonetheless. Charles Mackerras leads an energetic performance and includes some music that I have never heard before in this opera as well as Marguerite's spinning song (one of my favorites.) The sound is very good.

OD 10878-3