Bluebell CD, Cavalleria, Turiddu, Canio, Stockholm


Jussi Bjorling was neither the first nor the last tenor to sing the roles of Turiddu in Cavalleria rusticana and Canio in Pagliacci in the same evening. He may well however have been the youngest ever, for he was only twenty-five when he first sang both roles at the Royal Opera in Stockholm on April 21,1936: a feat he repeated -only in Sweden- again in 1936 and also in 1938, 1944, 1948, 1954 and 1955. Many of the performances were sung entirely in Swedish, but in his fifties Bjorling preferred to sing Turiddu in Italian (even though surrounded by others signing in his mother tongue), having relearnt the part in that language for performances in the United States from 1947 onwards. Thus the live recording published in CD by Bluebell (ABCD 085) in their "Jussi Bjorling Series" (the performance was broadcast on December 8, 1954) combines a bilingual Cavalleria with an entielt Swedish Pagliacci.

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