Leoncavallo: I Pagliacci - Del Monaco, Tucci, Protti, D'Orazi; Morelli. Tokyo, 1961
Listen to a Sample:
It is amazing how much great Italian opera came out of Japan in the sixties. Here Mario Del Monaco assumes the role of Canio in a performance that would be the only video document of him in this role. The performance is electric. He may have been passed his prime but he could still crank out great b flats and b naturals. And more importantly as the opera progresses he really sounds like a man coming undone. Nedda is always a difficult role to cast. It requires a voice with youth and innocence but also steel. Gabriela Tucci delivers in all fronts. Aldo Protti's voice may be too beautiful for the part or Tonio but it is easy enough to forgive him. He delivers a wonderfully heartfelt prologue capped off with a great a flat. The sound is excellent.