The return of Unnatural Acts of Opera continues with another rarity, Respighi’s 1934 grand opera La fiamma. Starring in this tale of witchcraft in medieval Ravenna is American soprano Alessandra Marc as the mysterious Silvana.
According to Will Crutchfield‘s review of this live 1987 performance in the New York Times, La Marc’s “voice is full, beautiful, creamy at times. Her tone is pure: it does not have the overripe, pushed vibrato that afflicts so many singers in weighty operatic roles today. Miss Marc also has a feel for the soaring curves of Puccinian lyrical writing. She is generous with portamento, and she lets her feelings into her singing. One would not be surprised if Zinka Milanov had been one of her models.”
The cast also includes Mignon Dunn and James McCracken, with Robert Bass conducting.