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Björling, Cigna, Wettergren, Basiola, Zambelli... Chorus and Orchestra of the Royal Opera, Vittorio GUI, Covent Garden,London, 1939. "This Trovatore is essential listening, as it ranks among Bjoerling's greatest recorded performances. The Swedish tenor is in his youthful prime, with a gloriously sweet and supple tone that also offers plenty of slancio. The high notes ring out with tremendous focus and power. Bjoerling joins Gina Cigna for a resounding D-flat at the conclusion of the Act I trio. The cabaletta 'Di quella pira' features two stunning high Cs, the second driving the Covent Garden audience into a frenzy. There is also a sensitivity in Bjoerling's performance that places it on an exalted level. The exchanges with Azucena and Leonora are delivered with a loving tenderness that serves to make Bjoerling's heroic outpourings all the more potent. In short, Bjoerling ideally captures all three aspects of Manrico's character--son, lover, and warrior.
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