Label: Opera D'Oro
Catalog number: OPD 6012
With one exception, all the numbers on this recording are from the non-operatic repertoire for which Pavarotti was famous on the recital stage, a venue far more intimate than the opera house. The earliest selection is Beethoven’s moving
“In questa tomba oscura,” the lament of a forsaken lover. Sorrow also pervades a song by Bellini, and “Pace non trovo” by Franz Liszt. The mood then lightens with Mascagni’s “Serenata” and the rollicking “Il barcajuolo” of Donizetti.
The Neapolitan style is further exemplified in selections by Tosti and Bixio. More songs by Bellini are followed by three of Ottorino Respighi, one ofthe few Italian composers more famous for his orchestral pieces than his vocal works. A famous aria from Verdi’s opera Il trovatore is surprisingly transformed into a recital song with piano accompaniment, and the program concludes with Schubert’s universally beloved “Ave Maria.”