The Royal Opera House

Rossini: Armida CD (Tullio Serafin)

Rossini is a pillar of bel canto opera, but he was less central to Callas’s art and career than Bellini and Donizetti. She performed two of his comic works – Il barbiere di Siviglia and Il turco in Italia – and in 1952, with her mentor Tullio Serafin conducting, took the title role in the dramatic Armida. The opera had not been seen for many years and even today remains a rare visitor to the world’s opera houses. It is notable both for the virtuosity and stamina required of the star soprano and for the presence of no fewer than five tenors. Callas’ achievement as the enchantress is nothing less than spectacular, particularly in the mesmerising rondo aria ‘D’amore al dolce impero’.

Composer: Gioachino Rossini
Armida: Maria Callas
Rinaldo: Francesco Albanese
Gernando: Mario Filippeschi
Goffredo: Alessandro Ziliani
Carlo:Gianni Raimondi

Orchestra e Coro del Teatro Comunale di Firenze
Conductor: Tullio Serafin
Year: 1952
Remastered: 2017
Running Time: 132:40 mins
(Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino)