Saturday, September 1, 2007

Greatest Classical CD Covers EVER, Part III (Pagliacci Edition)

Click here for the complete (ongoing) series...

Cavalleria Rusticana / Pagliacci
Pavarotti looks more like a mime here. I'm sure his performance of "Vesti la giubba" while walking against the wind killed on stage, I'm sure it doesn't work on CD. And the end, when the invisible box Pavorotti's in keeps getting smaller and smaller until he expires? It's definitely an argument for the superiority of DVD over CD for opera in the home.

Pavarotti's Greatest Hits
Maybe he's supposed to be dressed up as Canio. But his face isn't painted. I'm forced to conclude that Pavorotti is wearing his street clothes in this photo. Hey man, it's the 21st century: do your own thing.

Pagliacci (Cellini)
This cover screams "clowns" to me. "Why yes, I do work with Eliot Ness. What's that? Al Capone's on the streets again? Well, we'll see about that!"

Legendary Performances of Franco Corelli
Opera stars are allowed to have personal lives, you know. And if Corelli wants to go to Star Trek conventions dressed as Spock, it's well within his rights. Who are you to call him a nerd? It looks like he's ready to reenact Spock's freakout scene from "Amok Time".

Der Bajazzo (Stein)
Covers to Pagliacci should give you an idea of the tragic story the opera tells. They aren't supposed to make you shout "oh, boo hoo hoo! Be a man, for God's sake!" at the opera set you have in your hands in the middle of the CD store and you're escorted out by security because this has happened twice already and please don't come again, sir, until you can control yourself.

Elgar - An Anniversary Portrait
I'm afraid the exorcism didn't work, Father Damian. The spectre of Elgar will forever haunt this cursed isle. Perhaps we should venture to safety on the continent. Or perhaps west. Across the sea...

I didn't know Pagliacci was about hippies having indiscriminate sex with each other. This is i am curious (clowns).

Cav & Pag
Frickin' Regietheater. Cav & Pag done as if it was that Star Trek episode where the guys with the black and white faces discriminated against the guy with the white and black face. We all learned a lesson from that one - if you're all gonna paint your faces, do it together so you make sure you're coordinated.

Normally, I think imposing ideas that have nothing to do with the opera is foolish, but I gotta admit that the effect of Canio beaming on and off stage was stunning. Surely this is Trek conventioneer Corelli's favorite performance. Hopefully he got his copy autographed by William Shatner at the convention in Burbank.

Jesus! Tito Wayne Gacy. Disgusting. I can't imagine the horrors when they dug up the basement of Gobbi's suburban bungalow. And he sold CDs of his singing from prison! What kind of sick person would buy those?

Click here for the complete (ongoing) series...


Ian said...

I thought this idea was going downhill. Then I read "i am curious (clowns)". Bravo, sir, Bravo.

Akimon Azuki said...

Fat Lucy is the king of crazy covers and Sutherland is the queen. How about two of them together...? Take a look at that
This cover has been cheering me up for ages.

Jason said...

Yeah, that's a great one. Pavorotti's picture alone deserves an essay...

Colby Cosh said...

He looks like he's auditioning for a playing card.

Anonymous said...

The guy on the Chandos "Pag" is a dead ringer for Crazy Joe DeVolla in the Seinfeld "opera" episode where Crazy Joe starts believing he's Canio and Elaine is Nedda. "Did you betray me, Nedda?"

Alison said...

Good lord, it's really true. Edward Elgar is the Big Giant Head!

Spencer said...

I'm going to have to go with Pagliacci.