Opera Special Feature: 101 Best Opera CDs
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101 Best

Cavalli: La Calisto
Maria Bayo, Sonja Theodoridou, Alessandra Mantovani, Marcello Lippi, Simon Keenlyside, Graham Pushee, Gilles Ragon, Barry Banks, Dominique Visse, David Pittsinger
Concerto Vocale
René Jacobs, conductor
Harmonia Mundi

Textually purer than Leppard, Jacobs misses none of the theatricality of Cavalli's Shakespearean mélange. The fact that this recording originated in a stage production gives it a clear advantage overthe competition. Bayo is every bit the equal of Cotrubas when it comes to charm, and the virtuosity of Lippi in his Diana impersonation is astounding. Mantovani is disadvantaged by the comparison with Baker, but we have now gotten beyond the necessity of Leppard's realizations.

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