Friday, April 8, 2011

Rossini - L'occasione Fa Il Ladro – Marcello Viotti, English Chamber Orchestra







L’occasione fa il Ladro is described as a burletta and revolves round a typical farsa libretto involving mistakenly exchanged suitcases at a country inn. The work was recorded at the same series of sessions as L’Inganno Felice and several singers appear in both works. It is unique among the five farse, and unusual in the Rossini oeuvre, in having no formal overture. Instead a brief andante prelude leads into allegro storm music of the kind that is familiar in several of Rossini’s operas, both buffa and seria. As in L’Inganno Felice the tenor Lorio Zennaro whilst having a light, if dryish timbre and a pleasing heady tone, is not always steady. This is also in evidence in his delightful aria D’ogni piu sacro.Gioachino Rossini He duets well with the Ernestina of Francesca Provvisionato whose singing is a pleasure throughout. Maria Bayo as Berenice is rather careful in her introduction to Vieino e il momento but flings off the coloratura with accuracy, aplomb and warm tone. Both female singers are dependable and characterful throughout. The buffo character of the work is underscored by the music for Don Parmenione sung by Natale de Carolis and Martino sung by the character bass Fabio Previati. As in the other operas in the series these two nicely contrasted voices are towers of strength, singing with accuracy and bringing out the character of their parts. Their contrasting voices and well articulated fast singing is particularly good in duet. Viotti shapes the melodies and moves the music along well. Why L’occasione fa il Ladro was not better received at the Teatro San Moise I do not know. In a city where the opera theatres also reflected social undercurrents may have been significant. Certainly, the fact that the composer had signed a contract to produce an opera for the prestigious La Fenice was well known and his upward movement may have caused resentment. This is certainly suggested as one reason for the lukewarm response at Teatro San Moise to Il Signor Bruschino, the last of the five farse, when it was premiered two months later.


flac, cover

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