Donizetti: Lucia di Lammermoor - Sutherland, Pavar 4781513
Sutherland's scenes from "Lucia" recorded close to her celebrated debut in the role in 1957 and the complete 1971 recording: no collection should be without this CD.
. . . recordings that capture the magical artistry and stunning coloratura of the great Joan Sutherland . . . [she] was one of the 20th century's great voices . . . [who] famously discovered her ability for seemingly effortless, stratospheric coloratura of laser-beam precision -- and her true calling performing bel canto repertoire . . . she is joined by a superb cast . . . In the famous 'mad' scene, Sutherland's purity and fearless technical skill are breathtaking . . . her voice is youthful, limpid and utterly beautiful throughout its range. No wonder her 1959 debut in the role at Covent Garden caused such a sensation. Sutherland was not just a bel canto canary -- she was also a champion of Handel's vocal music at a time when it was still a curiosity.