Zandonai: Francesca da Rimini - Olivero, Del Monaco, Malaspina, De Palma; Gavazzeni. Milano, 1959
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Although the story of Francesca da Rimini is quintessentially Italian, the music is an interesting mix of many musical innovations taking place in the teens in Europe. The result is a lush score that seems closer to Die Frau ohne Schatten than La Bohéme. However, Zandonai has his moments where he shows his routes with gorgeous Italianate melodies. Magda Olivero, one of the greatest exponents of Italian Twentieth Century composers takes on the title role. She is joined by Mario del Monaco and the two of them make a very good case for the merits of this opera. And it is always important to mention Piero de Palma who gives a wonderfully sinister performance as Malatestino. The sound is very good.