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STRAVINSKY: Rake's Progress (The) (Metropolitan Opera, Stravinsky) (1953)

Composer(s):Stravinsky, Igor
Period(s) 20th Century
Genre Classical Music
Category Opera
Catalogue 8.111266-67
Label Naxos Historical
Quality   320kbps
 This album is not available in your country due to licensing restrictions or copyright laws that provide or may provide for terms of protection for sound recordings that differ from the rest of the world.

This 1953 recording was the first of the two complete recordings of Stravinsky’s operatic masterpiece The Rake’s Progress to be conducted by the composer. All the musical forces were drawn from the Metropolitan Opera’s historic first production, first seen on St.Valentine’s Day 1953, conducted by Fritz Reiner, who also took charge of all the musical preparation.The cast was drawn from the cream of the Met’s English speaking singers, notably tenor Eugene Conley as Tom Rakewell, Mack Harrell as Nick Shadow and Blanche Thebom as Baba the Turk. Joining them as Anne Trulove was the immensely popular Austrian soprano Hilde Gueden who, from 1947 to 1973, was one of the most distinguished singers of the Vienna State Opera.


Review By David Denton,Naxos,September 2007

By the time the libretto for The Rakes Progress was delivered to Stravinsky in 1948, his international fame was such that he composed all of his works to specific commissions. Yet such was his desire to write a major opera that he began work on The Rake without even the basic prospect of a performance. It was to take much of his time over the next three years, eventually premiered not in a major opera house, but in his choice of the more confined space of the Teatro La Fenice in Venice. It was an apt decision for the work is a chamber score less well suited to the big stage settings. The story was to relate the downfall of Tom Rakewell who in the hands of the devil - in the guise of Nick Shadow - enjoys all bodily lusts, until as a broken man he


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