Puccini Without the Surprises

There's nothing here to thrill or entice.

Composer: Puccini
Repertoire: Romance - Opera Favourites
Artists: Antoinette Halloran (soprano), Rosario La Spina (tenor), et al.,
Rating: 2/5

Genre: Vocal
Label: ABC Classics 476 6404

This is Puccini without the suprises, as his much-loved arias and duets are delivered in a competent but uncompelling recording by these stars of Opera Australia. On the one side you get ‘Nessun Dorma’ sung by the former Brisbane bricklayer Rosario La Spina, who enhances his reputation here after his early career success, but on the other, soprano Antoinette Halloran’s highly coloured performance lacks delicacy. She’s got that full-on dramatic quality, which means she can belt it out with the best, disguising the vulnerability of some of Puccini’s most endearing heroines. The orchestra offer able support, but you can find better recordings of such predictable repertoire.