Verdi: Aida - L. Price, Simionato, Labò, Bastianini, Weber; von Karajan. Wien, 1964
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This recording almost didn't make it on the list due to the sound. However the cast is almost out of a dream and there are times when the brilliance of Price, or Simionato slices through the flaws of the recording that makes it worth it. But I would caution that this is really only for the die-hard collector out there (you know who you are.) There really is no need to extoll the brilliance that was Leontyne Price's Aida. That speaks for itself. Giulietta Simionato was nearing the end of her career but shows that her voice was still intact and delivers a fearsome and vulnerable Amneris. Ettore Bastianini is at his best. Karajan's pacing and sense of melodic line is excellent.