Stuart Neill

1965 Atlanta -

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The only time I heard Stuart Neill on stage was in a Puritani performance at the Wiener Staatsoper in 1995; he stepped in for a sick colleague, and he was quite a surprise. The voice pretty, slightly ill-placed, but really just slightly, he gave a far above-average performance in this difficult role - and his top was actually more than remarkable, crowned by an effortless high F in Credeasi misera. Well, tenors capable of singing a high F on stage are obviously a rare species, and so for many years, I hoped he'd come back to Vienna. He never did. And in the meantime, having heard a few recordings of his more recent singing, I'm really glad about it... He must be completely crazy - with this purely lyrical voice (on whose placement he should have continued to work), he has made Manrico his new cheval-de-bataille (of course without working on the placement, which has thus grown worse). The Puritani excerpt I'm sending is from about the time when I heard him, the Di quella pira is from 2009, Florence - this was broadcast by an Italian radio station!! Admittedly, there is also a recording (available on youtube) from the final rehearsal of that production where he fares much better, but then, even muchmuchmuch better wouldn't have made him a Manrico.
Stuart Neill sings Il Trovatore: Di quella pira
The audience was deaf!
Stuart Neill sings I Puritani: Vieni, vieni, with Ruth Ann Swenson
In RA Format
I wish to thank Robert Schlesinger for the recordings and notes.

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