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CHAN 3116M
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CHAN 3116
(multiple CD Set)
Opera - The Masked Ball

Verdi: A Masked Ball

The Classical Shop
release date: September 2004


London Philharmonic Orchestra

David Parry

Anthony Michaels-Moore

baritone - Count Anckarstroem

Christopher Purves

baritone - Count Ribbing

Roland Wood

baritone - Cristian

Brindley Sherratt

bass - Count Horn

Jill Grove

mezzo-soprano - Ulrike Arvidson

Susan Patterson

soprano - Amelia

Linda Richardson

soprano - Oscar

Ashley Catling

tenor - Amelia's Servant/Lord Chief Justice

Dennis O'Neill

tenor - Gustavus III, King of Sweden

Geoffrey Mitchell Choir


Blackheath Halls, London


Brian Couzens


Ralph Couzens

Michael Common


Record Label
Opera In English


Vocal & Song

Opera in English

Total Time - 125:53
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Opera - The Masked Ball



Select Complete Single Disc for

A Masked Ball

  Melodramma in three acts  
  Libretto by Antonio Somma, English translation by Amanda Holden  
1 Prelude 4:04
  Act I  
  Scene 1  
2 'Rest Gustavus, may sweet dreams restore you' 1:37
  Oficers, Gentlemen, Ribbing, Horn, Henchmen  
3 'The King approaches' 1:41
  Oscar, Gustavus  
4 'There shall I gaze in ecstasy' 2:03
  Gustavus, Ribbing, Horn, Henchmen, Oscar, Officers, Gentlemen  
5 'Go with the others and wait until I call you' 2:30
  Gustavus, Oscar, Anckarstroem  
6 'Please reflect upon your duty' 2:41
7 'The Lord Chief Justice!' 1:30
8 'She conjures from afar, thunder and lightning' 1:50
  Oscar, Gustavus, Lord Chief Justice  
9 'My friends, will you come with me' 0:49
  Gustavus, Anckarstroem, Oscar, Ribbing, Horn  
10 'We can all go and see her together' 2:06
  Gustavus, Anckarstroem, Oscar, Ribbing, Horn, Henchmen  
  Scene 2  
11 'Quiet. . . her trance must not be interrupted. . .' 3:47
  Women, Children, Ulrike  
12 'I'm first to be here!' 2:30
  Gustavus, Women, Children, Ulrike  
13 'Allow me to enter' 0:58
  Cristian, Ulrike, Gustavus  
14 'You can rest assured' 2:12
  Ulrike, Cristian, Gustavus,Women, Servant  
15 'What brings you here to me?' 1:26
16 'Step out towards the sunset' 1:20
  Ulrike, Amelia, Gustavus  
17 'Oh, help me, God in heaven' 2:05
  Amelia, Ulrike, Gustavus, Voices  
18 'Rise, great enchantress, speak to us all' 0:44
  Ribbing, Horn, Men, Oscar, Gustavus  
19 'Do you see the furious billows abating' 2:53
  Gustavus, Oscar, Chorus  
20 'Reckless stranger, your words are defiant' 2:29
  Ulrike, Gustavus, Ribbing, Oscar  
21 'Her crazy crystal-gazing' 3:29
  Gustavus, Ulrike, Ribbing, Horn, Oscar, Chorus  
22 'One thing you've yet to tell me' 4:09
  Gustavus, Ulrike, Oscar, Chorus, Ribbing, Horn, Anckarstroem, Cristian  
  Act II  
23 [Prelude] 2:04
24 'Here I am in this place of retribution' 1:25
25 'When I pluck these dark stems' 4:58
26 'Here at last' 1:22
27 'You must know that I too have been aching' 4:03
28 'The sweetest words I ever heard' 3:22
  Gustavus, Amelia  
29 'Oh God! Someone is here!' 1:59
  Amelia, Gustavus, Anckarstroem  
30 'My friend, I ask you a personal favour' 0:57
  Gustavus, Anckarstroem  
31 'Do you hear how the menacing voices' 2:05
  Amelia, Anckarstroem, Gustavus  
32 'Stay close to me' 2:20
  Anckarstroem, Amelia, Conspirators, Ribbing, Horn  
33 'We interrupt their stolen kisses' 4:40
  Ribbing, Horn, Anckarstroem, Amelia, Conspirators  
  Act III  
  Scene 1  
34 'Your offence is not forgiven' 2:11
  Anckarstroem, Amelia  
35 'I go, but in compassion' 4:22
  Amelia, Anckarstroem  
36 'Stand up! I permit you to see your son' 1:59
37 'Shame on you, who defiled my beloved' 4:05
38 'We are gathered. Now hear me' 1:21
39 'I'm with you' 1:07
40 'Let us all by our shame be united' 0:48
  Anckarstroem, Ribbing, Horn  
41 'One indulgence I ask of you' 4:01
  Anckarstroem, Ribbing, Horn, Amelia  
42 'So which name has been chosen?' 1:17
  Anckarstroem, Ribbing, Amelia, Horn  
43 'Now Oscar may enter' 1:05
  Anckarstroem, Oscar, Amelia, Ribbing, Horn  
44 'Ah! I know that something wonderful' 2:52
  Oscar, Amelia, Anckarstroem, Ribbing, Horn  
  Scene 2  
45 'Perhaps she is safely home now' 2:35
46 'But if your light is lost to me' 2:36
47 'Ah! She is there. How can I see her' 1:30
  Gustavus, Oscar  
  Scene 3  
48 'The hall is filled with laughter' 2:10
  Chorus, Ribbing, Anckarstroem, Horn, Oscar  
49 'Why are you caring?' 1:59
50 'The hall is filled with laughter' 1:49
  Chorus, Anckarstroem, Oscar  
51 'Ah! You are here!. . .' 4:24
  Amelia, Gustavus  
52 'This is how I embrace you!' 1:14
  Anckarstroem, Gustavus, Amelia, Oscar, Chorus  
53 'She is blameless: as death approaches' 4:20
  Gustavus, Amelia, Oscar, Anckarstroem, Chorus, Ribbing, Horn  
 Dennis O'Neill tenor - Gustavus III, King of Sweden
 Anthony Michaels-Moore baritone - Count Anckarstroem
 Susan Patterson soprano - Amelia
 Jill Grove mezzo-soprano - Ulrike Arvidson
 Linda Richardson soprano - Oscar
 Christopher Purves baritone - Count Ribbing
 Brindley Sherratt bass - Count Horn
 Roland Wood baritone - Cristian
 Ashley Catling tenor - Amelia's Servant/Lord Chief Justice
 David Parry
  10, 11, 13, 14 & 15 July 2003  
Sir Peter Moores has long wanted to record Verdi’s A Masked Ball and has been biding his time until the right cast was available. Susan Patterson, he knew, would be perfect for the role of Amelia. Currently making a big splash in the US, she is of expert musical lineage: she trained with the Rumanian soprano Virginia Zeani and now coaches all her roles with Licia Albanese,Toscanini’s favourite soprano. Dennis O'Neill is famed for his interpretation of the role of Gustavus. Add Verdi veteran Anthony Michaels-Moore and you have a cast worthy of this opera, a work of such steamy passion that it has earned it the nickname ‘Verdi’s Tristan’.

The London Philharmonic Orchestra plays regularly for the Glyndebourne Festival Opera and therefore well understands the operatic genre.

Conducted by David Parry, who receives consistently high praise for his work on the Opera in English label.

Contains the famous aria ‘Shame on you’ (‘Eri tu’).

Two-CD set at mid-price.

King Gustavus’s best friend, Count Anckarstroem, informs him of a plot to assassinate him. A soothsayer tells the King that he will be assassinated by the first person to shake his hand. Laughing at her prediction, Gustavus is joined by Anckarstroem – who shakes him by the hand.

The King loves Amelia, Anckarstroem’s wife. Seeking a herb to expunge the guilty love she feels for Gustavus, she visits the Gallows. The King arrives and she at first resists but then falls into his arms. Anckarstroem comes to let him know that the plotters are nearby, and urges him to flee. Gustavus has him swear to escourt the lady to the city gates. As Anckarstroem escorts the veiled Amelia, they are waylaid by the conspirators. During the scuffle, Amelia’s identity is revealed. Anckarstroem’s jealousy makes him decide to join with the conspirators.

Anckarstroem and the conspirators draw lots to see who will kill the King. At a masked ball Gustavus tells Amelia of his decision to send her and her husband overseas. As the King bids farewell to Amelia, Anckarstroem kills him. Dying, the King proclaims Amelia’s innocence and begs that no one avenge his death.

Verdi’s opera in three acts suffered from many censorship troubles.Times were politically sensitive: 1859 was a crucial year in the struggle for Italian unification and there was an attempt on the life of Napoleon III not long before the work’s proposed first performance. The plot had originally centred on the assassination of Gustavus III of Sweden in 1792 but for the Rome premiere, the plot was transferred from Sweden to seventeenth-century Boston, New England. The opera was performed in this form until the mid-twentieth century when the original Swedish setting was reinstated with increasing regularity.

'Dennis O'Neill is one of Britain's most Italianate singers, and he is ardent in the lead role, singing with a verbal clarity not always found elsewhere.'
BBC Music Magazine

'Ballo is Verdi's most romantic opera, and David Parry conducts the London Philharmonic with a good deal of ardour. The quality of sound is excellent' This, though, is one of the best sets of all the Opera in English series.'
International Record Review

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