CAVALLERIA RUSTICANA / PAGLIACCI:Mascagni / Leoncavallo
Nelson; Bumbry, Theyard, Colzani / McCracken, Moffo, Milnes
Original Air Date: 01/18/1975
This is Moffo’s final performance broadcast from the Met, and she does not go out on a high note. Milnes is not my preferred Tonio, but I prefer him to Pons who has eight more than Milnes. I prefer MacNeil, Merrill, or Warren among modern Met baritones. The surprise is Merrill only has 22 Tonios with his last in 1960; Caruso (118) and Martinelli(68) are firmly ahead of all Canio competitors, but McCracken is third and by a healthy amount more than any other postwar tenors who are bunched in the 20s. I like Bumbry’s Santuzza, even if it is not as authentic as Cossotto’s. It’s a good fit for her voice.