Pavarotti and the great Montserrat Caballé

22 Aug

Pavarotti sang many times together with the great Spanish soprano Montserrat Caballé, both on stage and on record. It’s time to pay tribute to this great Spanish soprano shortly before she pays her tribute to Pavarotti in the upcoming tribute concert, called Luciano’s Friends, in Modena, Italy on September 6th, 21012.

Montserrat Caballé was born in Barcelona, Spain in 1933. She is Spain’s most succesful and famous soprano with a great international career on the opera stages of the world. Many will also remember her over the top pop duet Barcelona with the rock singer Freddie Mercury from 1987.

Pavarotti recorded six operas for Decca together with Montserrat Caballé, all available on Decca CD. Highlights from all these recordings, including duets with Pavarotti, is to be found on the Decca CD The great voice of Caballé: Italian opera arias & duets.

One of these operas is the famous 1972 recording of Puccini’s Turandot were Caballé sang the role of Liù against Pavarotti’s Calaf. However, Caballé sang the role of Turandot herself against Pavarotti’s Calaf live at the San Francisco Opera in 1977. A recording of the 4 November 1977 performance is unofficially available on several labels, and is easily obtainable, for instance on the Gala label.

The 1972 studio recording is of course the Turandot to have, but the 1977 live recording is also wonderful! Get them both! I’ve read somewhere that Pavarotti enjoyed the 1977 recording very much and eagerly signed LP versions of this recording. When listening to the 1977 live recording I often think of how sad it was that Pavarotti didn’t sing this opera much on stage.

Many of the Caballé/Pavarotti collaborations on stage have been issued unofficially on record and can also be found on YouTube.

The first two YouTube clips of the day are audio recordings from the 1977 live recording. Caballé and Pavarotti sings to duets: “In questa reggia” and “Straniero, ascolta”. The third YouTube clip is an interview with Caballé and Pavarotti talking about this performance of Turandot.



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4 Responses to “Pavarotti and the great Montserrat Caballé”


  1. Pavarotti and Montserrat Caballé on record and stage | Odd Pavarotti Blog - March 14, 2013

    [...] I reported last year, the great Spanish soprano Montserrat Caballé suffered a small stroke and broke an arm late in October 2012. I haven’t found any news [...]

  2. Pavarotti and Montserrat Caballé in La Gioconda | Odd Pavarotti Blog - March 14, 2013

    [...] of the great collaborations on record between Pavarotti and the great Montserrat Caballé was the 1980 recording of the Ponchielli opera La [...]

  3. Get well very soon, Montserrat Caballé! « Odd Pavarotti Blog - October 23, 2012

    [...] been reported all over the net today (like here and here) that the great Spanish soprano Montserrat Caballé (79) suffered a small stroke and broke an arm on [...]

  4. Remembering the great Pavarotti: Luciano’s Friends « Odd Pavarotti Blog - September 4, 2012

    [...] world-famous Spanish soprano Montserrat Caballé, who performed and recorded many operas with [...]

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