Singers on Singing: Ruggero Raimondi
The great bass-baritone Ruggero Raimondi rose to world fame both as an actor and a singer not long after making his debut in Spoleto in 1964 in the role of Colline in Puccini’s La Bohème. He quickly became in the highest demand for his vocal mastery and stage command, with top conductors such as Carlo Maria Giulini, Herbert von Karajan, Claudio Abbado and Riccardo Muti and cutting edge stage directors such as Jean-Pierre Ponelle, Piero Faggioni, Luca Ronconi and Giorgio Strehler engaging him as their choice interpreter of roles particularly in operas from the Italian, French and Russian repertoire.
His career extended into leading film appearances, not only when cinema directors Joseph Losey, Francesco Rosi, Andrej Zulawski and Benoit Jacquot engaged him for their pioneering opera films but also when Alain Resnais and Joseph Losey cast him in their dramatic feature films.
In 2003 he recorded a conversation in which he discussed his life in music spanning the period from his earliest childhood memories right up to the time of his interview. Recorded extracts from his performances of the operas he discusses in detail during his conversation are included in the feature presented here, which was broadcast in 2003 in an abbreviated form. It appears here in its original uncut version for the first time.
Musical excerpts included in this feature:
- “Ella giammai m’amo” from Don Carlos (Verdi)
- “Per traversare i di dolenti in cui viviamo” from Don Carlos (Verdi), with bass Giovanni Foiani
- “Qui me rendra ce mort?” from Don Carlos (Verdi), with tenor Plácido Domingo
- “Deh vieni alla finestra” from Don Giovanni (Mozart)
- “Skorbit dusha!” (The Coronation Scene) from Boris Godunov (Mussorgsky)
- “Carevicha skorej!” from Boris Godunov (Mussorgsky)
- “Un flot azuré bat ses grèves…” from Don Quichotte (Massenet)
- “Tre sbirri, una carozza” from Tosca (Puccini)