Listen to a Sample:
The sound on this 1952 Otello ranges from “good” to “acceptable”. The performance, on the other hand, ranges from “good” to “great”. Predictably, Ramón Vinay pulls out all the stops in a heartfelt, thunderous Otello, never better than when he is losing control. Renata Tebaldi offers a melting willow song (unfortunately marred by a dip in the sound quality) and a impeccably floated Ave Maria. Gino Bechi’s Iago is nicely nasty, though perhaps lacking in finesse, and Piero de Palma makes Cassio unusually memorable. Gabriele Santini conducts expertly in a performance that features an arresting vitality from the artists.