Verdi: Rigoletto

This page lists all recordings of Rigoletto, by Giuseppe Verdi (1813-1901) on CD, DVD, Blu-ray & download (MP3 & FLAC). Generally, more recent releases are listed first, but with priority given to those that are in stock.

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Verdi: Rigoletto

Verdi: Rigoletto

17 June 1952 · México, Palacio de Bellas Artes


Giuseppe di Stefano (Duca di Mantova), Maria Callas (Gilda), Piero Campolonghi (Rigoletto), Ignacio Ruffino (Sparafucile), María Teresa García (Maddalena), Ana María Feuss (Giovanna), Gilberto Cerda (Monterone), Alberto Herrera (Marullo), Carlos Sagarminaga (Borsa), Francisco Alonso (Conte di Ceprano), Edna Patoni (Contessa di Ceprano)

Palacio de las Bellas Artes, Umberto Mugnai

Callas only sang Gilda in Rigoletto twice on stage, in Mexico City in 1952, and this recording was taken from the first of those performances. She brought tonal substance and deep interpretative insight to a role that had sometimes been treated by light-voiced sopranos as an opportunity for coloratura display. Gilda’s father, Rigoletto himself, is sung by Piero Campolonghi, an Italian baritone closely associated with the role, while Giuseppe di Stefano, is the dashing, but unscrupulous Duke of Mantua. He partnered Callas frequently during her career – on stage, in the recording studio and on a final concert tour of Europe, North America and Japan in 1974.

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Warner Classics Maria Callas Live Remastered - 9029584462

(CD - 2 discs)

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Verdi: Rigoletto

Verdi: Rigoletto


Hilde Gueden (Gilda), Mario del Monaco (Duke of Mantua), Aldo Protti (Rigoletto), Cesare Siepi (Sparafucile), Piero de Palma (Borsa), Maria Castelli (Countess of Ceprano), Pier Luigi Latinucci (Marullo), Dario Caselli (Count of Ceprano), Fernando Corena (Count of Monterone), Luisa Ribacchi (Giovanna), Lina Rossi (The Duchess’s Page), Piero Poldi (Usher), Giulietta Simionato (Maddalena)

Coro e orchestra dell’Accademia di Santa Cecilia, Roma, Alberto Erede

Heralded by a priceless photo of Del Monaco, this classic 1954 recording of Rigoletto is restored to the catalogue. Recorded about the same time as Erede’s Otello sessions (also with Del Monaco and Protti). Del Monaco gives a powerful rendition of the Duke and Hilda Gueden’s crystalline purity gives Gilda all the innocence and largesse of heart that the role demands.

“the Monterone, Maddalena and the Sparafucile are first rate. In the name part Protti puts up a very good show indeed: he is much in form; true in scale, generous... [Gueden] has many sweet moments. […] Del Monaco sings very loud indeed: his is a splendid organ – and we think, if not instantly of the Duke of Mantua, at least of a lusty lover” Gramophone Magazine, January 1955

Australian Eloquence - ELQ4807185

(CD - 2 discs)

$12.75

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Verdi: Rigoletto

Verdi: Rigoletto

1955


Maria Callas (Gilda), Tito Gobbi (Rigoletto), Giuseppe di Stefano (Il Duca), Nicola Zaccaria (Sparafucile), Adriana Lazzarini (Maddalena), Plinio Clabassi (Monterone), William Dickie (Marullo), Renato Ercolani (Borsa), Giuse Gerbino (Giovanna), Carlo Forti (Il Conte di Ceprano), Elvira Galassi (La Contessa di Ceprano)

Orchestra and Chorus of La Scala Milan, Tullio Serafin

Callas only sang Gilda in Rigoletto in one run of performances, in Mexico City in 1952, and she recorded the role three years later. She moves beyond the girlish tone and sparkling coloratura of the character’s first scenes to create a figure of tragic stature as events unfold. ‘Once heard, this rendering is never likely to be forgotten,’ was Gramophone’s judgement on her interpretation, and the same could apply to Tito Gobbi’s, embodying every aspect of the accursed court jester.

Warner Classics Maria Callas Remastered - 2564634095

(CD - 2 discs)

$14.00

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Verdi: Rigoletto

Verdi: Rigoletto


Tito Gobbi (Rigoletto), Maria Callas (Gilda), Giuseppe di Stefano (Il Duca), Nicola Zaccaria (Sparafucile), Adriana Lazzarini (Maddalena), Plinio Clabassi (Monterone), William Dickie (Marullo), Renato Ercolani (Borsa), Giuse Gerbino (Giovanna)

Orchestra & Chorus of Teatro alla Scala, Tullio Serafin

Recorded in studio in 1955

Regis - RRC2076

(CD - 2 discs)

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Verdi: Rigoletto

Verdi: Rigoletto

Live from Dresden Opera


Željko Lučić (Rigoletto), Diana Damrau (Gilda), Juan Diego Florez (Il Duca di Mantova), Georg Zeppenfeld (Sparafucile), Christa Mayer (Maddalena), Angela Liebold (Giovanna), Markus Marquardt (Monterone), Matthias Henneberg (Marullo), Oliver Ringelhahn (Borsa), Markus Butter (Conte di Ceprano), Kyung-Hae Kang (Contessa di Ceprano)

Sachsische Staatskapelle Dresden, Fabio Luisi

In June 2008, Giuseppe Verdi temporarily replaced Richard Strauss as the presiding genius at Dresden’s Semperoper as baritone Željko Lucic, soprano Diana Damrau and tenor Juan Diego Flórez came together for a new production of Rigoletto, directed by Nikolaus Lehnhoff and conducted by Fabio Luisi, chief conductor of the Semperoper, Dresden, General Music Director-elect of the Zurich Opera, and Principal Guest Conductor of the Metropolitan Opera.

“Lehnhoff's production of Rigoletto is a ferocious, if uneven affair, that awkwardly positions the opera between religious drama and psychopathology...vocally [Damrau and Lucic have] rarely been bettered, while Flórez, cast against his squeaky-clean image, is insidiously sensual as the Duke. There's powerhouse conducting from Fabio Luisi, too.” The Guardian, 9th December 2010 ****

“Flórez uses his lighter-than-usual tenor to sing the role with high-wattage brilliance...the outstanding vocal performance comes from Diana Damrau as Gilda. More than Flórez, she sounds fully inside the role, shaping "Caro nome" with a control of tone-colour and phrasing that makes entirely her own...Zeljka Lucic brings dignity to the role of Rigoletto with his warm expansive singing.” Gramophone Magazine, January 2010

“Musically, the show is spectacular...Juan Diego Flórez is wonderfully sure of himself in every way...[Damrau] is no soubrette; the voice has body and power, her breath control is superb, and there is never a worry about the proper landing of a high note...[Lucic is] a superb Verdi baritone...understanding the composer's long lines and dramatic instincts” International Record Review, December 2010

“The singers are a distinguished bunch, with Željko Lučić the most sympathetic and pathetic Rigoletto I have seen or heard...[Damrau] sings gorgeously, and her acting is first-rate. Juan Diego Flórez makes a convincing Duke...His narrow-bore voice turns out to be ideal for conveying the predatory hedonism of the character. In the Sparafucile of Georg Zeppenfeld we encounter a star in the making” BBC Music Magazine ***

“Filmed live at the Dresden Opera in 2008, Nikolaus Lehnhoff's production updates the action to the 1970s; Diana Damrau (all seething hormones and naive sensuality) and Juan Diego Florez (smarmy but endearing) makes a light-voiced but compelling pair of lovers, whilst Serbian baritone Željko Lučić balances savagery and tenderness to perfection as the tormented jester” Katherine Cooper, Presto Classical

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DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

Erato - 6418689

(DVD Video)

$16.75

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Verdi: Rigoletto

Verdi: Rigoletto

Live Recording from The Gran Teatre Del Liceu, 2004


Marcelo Álvarez (Il Duca), Carlos Álvarez (Rigoletto), Inva Mula (Gilda), Julian Konstantinov (Sparafucile), Nino Surguladze (Maddalena), Mercé Obiol (Giovanna), Stanislav Shvets (Monterone), Joan Martin-Royo (Marullo), on Plazaola (Borsa)

Gran Teatre del Liceu, Jesus-Lopez Cobos (conductor) & Graham Vick (director)

Set Design by Paul Brown

In their series of celebrated opera productions from the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona, Arthaus presents a staging of Rigoletto, one of Verdi’s most popular operas. The tragic opera about the Duke of Mantua, the court jester Rigoletto and his daughter Gilda forms part of the composer’s trilogia popolare together with La Traviata and Il Trovatore. It is full of melodious arias, expressive duets and highly dramatic orchestration.

With the brilliant Marcelo Álvarez singing the Duke of Mantua and baritone Carlos Álvarez, whose Rigoletto has been hailed as the perfect embodiment of Verdi‘s court jester, appearing in the title role, this production presents international stars in two of the leading roles. The dramatic requirements of this well-conceived and convincing interpretation are both musically and visually extremely well met by the leading male singers and Inva Mula’s Gilda. She is a Verdi soprano par excellence. The remarkable ensemble, orchestra and chorus of Barcelona’s Liceu under the experienced baton of Jesús López Cobos prove the opera house’s international standing once again. Graham Vick’s production and Paul Brown’s sets and costumes aim to convey the essence of the drama conceptually rather than literally which makes for a captivating performance.

Sound Format: PCM Stereo, DD 5.1, DTS 5.1

Picture Format: 16:9

DVD Format: DVD 9, NTSC

Subtitle Languages: IT, GB, DE, FR, ES, Catalan

Running Time: 130 mins

FSK: 0

“[Vick's production] has an ingeniously designed revolve at the centre of the set...The performance is strongly conducted by Jesus Lopez-Cobos, and Inva Mula again makes a memorable and moving Gilda...Carlos Alvarez, too, is a powerful and dominating Rigoletto, although his vibrato may not please all ears.” Penguin Guide, 2010 edition

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

Arthaus Musik - 107147

(DVD Video)

$29.50

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Verdi: Rigoletto

Verdi: Rigoletto


Renato Bruson (Rigoletto), Andrea Rost (Gilda), Roberto Alagna (Il Duca di Montova), Dimitri Kavrakos (Sparafucile), Mariana Pentcheva (Maddalena), Giorgio Giuseppini (Monterone), Antonella Trevisan (Giovanna), Silvestro Sammaritano (Marullo), Ernesto Gavazzi (Borsa), Antonio de Gobbi (Conte di Ceprano), Nicoletta Zanini (Contessa di Ceprano), Marilena Laurenza (Paggio)

Orchestra E Coro Del Teatro Alla Scala, Riccardo Muti

Rigoletto is one of the greatest baritone roles and dominates Verdi’s opera which is based on Victor Hugo’s play Le roi s’amuse. Both opera and play rang foul of the censor and consequently the setting for the opera was removed to a fictional court in Mantua. Rigoletto is the court jester who is torn between public duty and his role as a clandestine father. The work contains some of the most famous arias in Italian opera as well as one of the greatest ensembles, the quartet in Act Three.

Sony - The Sony Opera House - 88697448212

(CD - 2 discs)

$14.75

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Verdi: Rigoletto

Verdi: Rigoletto

Sung in German


Josef Metternich (Rigletto), Mimi Coertse (Gilda), Libero De Luca (Duke), Gottlob Frick (Sparafucile) & Ira Malaniuk (Maddalena)

Cologne Radio, Mario Rossi

Recorded 1956

Walhall - WLCD0193

(CD - 2 discs)

$13.00

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Verdi: Rigoletto

Verdi: Rigoletto


Naxos Historical - 8110020-21

(CD - 2 discs)

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Verdi: Rigoletto

Verdi: Rigoletto


Piero Cappuccilli (Rigoletto), Ileana Cotrubas (Gilda), Plácido Domingo (Il Duca), Nicolai Ghiaurov (Sparafucile), Elena Obraztsova (Maddalena), Hanna Schwarz (Giovanna), Kurt Moll (Monterone), Luigi de Corato (Marullo), Walter Gullino (Borsa), Dirk Sagemuller (Conte di Ceprano), Olive Fredricks (Contessa di Ceprano), Audrey Michael (Un paggio)

Wiener Staatsopernchor Wiener Philharmoniker, Carlo Maria Giulini

“By and large this set of Rigoletto must now become the recommended version. [This recording was met with] excited anticipation at finding Giulini once again in the studio recording his beloved Verdi … Giulini, like the composer, was himself out to "make something of a great subject", and he – with the dedication of about as strong a cast as it would be possible to assemble today, the Vienna Philharmonic and the DG engineers – has achieved not just another performance of an oft-recorded work but something with that kind of individual distinction so rarely encountered.” Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 1980

DG - 4796493

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