Tue, 21 October 2008
Here, in a performance from Newark, NJ, in February of 1974, is the great tenor Richard Tucker singing the final Enzo in Gioconda of his career. This performance was given scant months before his passing, and yet the beauty of the voice and the special sheen was all there, still in tact. The top soared, and the legato was rolled out as sung liquid gold. This Cielo e mar is one for the ages, and I will cherish it always.
This same aria was sung by Tucker 30 seasons earlier at his Met debut on January 25, 1945, and brought him fame.
This performance is taken from an exceptional sounding in-house tape of this event, and the hysterical bravos into the mike at the end are courtesy of yours truly. I just couldn't help myself. I sat there with the full knowledge that the great Golden Age of singing was still alive and well with Richard Tucker.
In a few months, it was over, and nothing I have heard since has even come close to the greatness revealed here for all to hear and marvel at.