Mar. 4 - Listeners' Choice: Donizetti's "La Favorita"
This spectacular cast makes any listener wonder why such a marvelous, colorful opera isn’t much better known. Sensational Shirley Verrett is Leonora, the beautiful, mysterious lady who so completely captures the heart of the monk Fernando (Luciano Pavarotti at his finest) that he forsakes his calling to defeat the Moors in battle in order to win her hand. Alas, she is the mistress of the king (Sherrill Milnes), who is so besotted with her he is determined to defy the pope himself to make Leonora his queen. It’s a tragic opera, so no one wins—except the audience.
Recorded March 11, 1978