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This new recording of Verdi’s Rigoletto stars the late, great Dmitri Hvorostovsky in one of his signature roles. He is very fine indeed, and grows the character interestingly, less sarcastic and more brutal than some – this Rigoletto can give as good as he gets. His baritone is secure and colourful. Likewise Francesco Demuro’s Duke, with lithe tone, crisp enunciation and truly Italianate ping to the voice, a pleasure to hear. Less so Nadine Sierra’s Gilda, generally monochromatic, her tone hardening a little to the top, her characterisation wan: Gilda as victim, not feisty young woman. Constantine Orbelian’s conducting follows a classic path, the supporting cast is adept if not exciting.

FRANCIS MUZZU Read the full review on Agora Classica

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