I had never heard the tenor Jesús Quiñones Ledesma, before listening to this recording of Il Trovatore. This recording was recorded live during the performances of December 14/16th 1973, at the Teatro de la Universidad de Puerto Rico. It always rewarding to find some previously unknown outstanding tenor, especially in view of the current lack of tenors capable of singing this opera, as I recently witnessed in Portland.
The opera is started strongly with Pedro Morell as Ferrando. He offers strong support during the rest of the opera.
The other discovery is the soprano Aura Norma Robledo (Leonora) who has a wonderful exciting voice. In the notes, Jesús Quiñones Ledesma renders her homage posthumously. The Tace la notte is both lyrical and exciting. She is received rapturously by the audience. In Timor di me?, she displays again excitement, sensibility and fine top notes to great acclaim. She is again exciting in Tu vedrai, while the duo with Héctor López displays pure vocal excitement.
In Deserto sulla terra, Jesús Quiñones Ledesma takes immediately possession of the role and impresses right away. He makes the necessary vocal impression in Ravvisami: Manrico io son, Che tardi? … Del carnefice consegna. The second scene ends with an exciting trio with the addition of Héctor López as De Luna. The audience displays again their justified enthusiasm. During his scene with Azucena, he stresses excellently the meaning of the words, for example Io caddi! Però da forte io caddi. His Mal reggendo all’aspro assalto is finely sung. The Ah si, ben mio, coll’essere has both lyrical qualities and strength, while as expected the Di quella pira brings down the house. He offers a fine Misere with Aura Norma Robledo, exhibits the necessary restraint in the duo Ai nostri monti with Isales (Azucena), while exhibiting the necessary dramatic heft in Ed a qual prezzo? .., Ha quest’infame .. Ti maledico!
Héctor Lopez displays good lyricism in Il balen del suo sorrriso and strength in Per me ora fatale. He is strong in his duos with Azucena and Leonora.
The Azucena, Darysabel Isales, is also on a high level in Stride la vampa, Condotta ell’era in ceppi .. Ei distruggeasi in pianto. The duo with De Luna is exciting and received rapturously.
The conductor is, also a new name to me, Randolfo Juarbe, who offers strong support. The audience, like me, is very excited by the whole performance and shows it at all the curtain calls.
Reference: Il Trovatore issued by Aptel, Inc. in 1998