Classical CD of the month

Name: Don Giovanni
Composer: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Artists: Johannes Weisser, baritone, Freiburg Baroque Orchestra/Rene
Jacobs
Label: Harmonia Mundi

Simon Keenlyside had been pencilled in for the title-role for this recording, with Johannes Weisser only playing it in the warm-up live performances. Apparently, however, conductor Rene Jacobs was so impressed with his young baritone that he got the gig, as they say.

No Giovanni can encompass every aspect of this multi-faceted role, but I know I am even more enthusiastic about him than our reviewer, Richard Wigmore, who says: 'His Don is less the sinister, demonic anti-hero, more an over-sexed, heedless young bounder with a taste for danger and a penchant for cruelty.'

I feel he has reinvented the role for our age. Weisser was young, only 26 when this was recorded, and sounds it. If his tone sounds a touch callow, that is actually an advantage for a Don who here is presented as utterly narcissistic, shallow in every respect except his deeply felt love for himself. He is not evil, just spoilt.

Thanks to those warm-up live performances, the cast feel like a played-in ensemble and they create real drama and comedy (graced by some of the most sparkling recitative accompaniments you will hear). Three cheers for someone having the sense to record Kenneth Tarver's graceful, agile Ottavio.

James Inverne, editor of Gramophone, chose his favourite of 10 CDs released this month, all reviewed in Gramophone.

Win this month's cd

Please go to the competition section of the site.

Reader offer

Try three issues of Gramophone for just £1 GP readers can access an exclusive trial subscription to Gramophone for just £1. Please visit our Discounts section.

Valid until 31 December 2007.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register

Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

UK COVID-19 vaccination programme tracker

UK COVID-19 vaccination programme tracker

GPs across the UK are playing a leading role in the largest-ever NHS vaccination...

CVT risk from COVID-19 infection 'significantly higher' than from vaccines, study suggests

CVT risk from COVID-19 infection 'significantly higher' than from vaccines, study suggests

The risk of cerebral venous thrombosis (CVT) following COVID-19 infection is eight...

‘Warm and kind’ retired Derbyshire GP dies from COVID-19

‘Warm and kind’ retired Derbyshire GP dies from COVID-19

Retired Derbyshire GP Dr Om Prakash Chawla, who was known for his warmth and kindness,...

GPs can learn from pandemic to strengthen relationship with patients, says RCGP chair

GPs can learn from pandemic to strengthen relationship with patients, says RCGP chair

General practice can build on changes to care during the COVID-19 pandemic to strengthen...

Surrey GP practice targeted by aggressive anti-vaccination poster

Surrey GP practice targeted by aggressive anti-vaccination poster

Staff at a GP surgery in Surrey have been left completely demoralised after they...

JCVI issues final guidance on phase 2 of COVID-19 vaccination programme

JCVI issues final guidance on phase 2 of COVID-19 vaccination programme

The JCVI has confirmed the next phase of the COVID-19 vaccination programme will...