Swedish tenor Jussi Björling was born 110 years ago in 1911. He was undoubtedly
one of the great tenors of the 20th century. His laser-like silver tones graced
some of the classic operatic recordings, including a famed La Bohème
conducted by Thomas Beecham, and a wonderful Turandot with Birgit Nilsson.
He was also one of the great Manricos in Il Trovatore. We are
lucky to have live performances of this opera. The best is probably from Covent
Garden in 1939. Another magical recording he made was of Manon Lescot.
He sings that with Italian soprano Licia Albanese. This is a classic reading.
We are fortunate, as there are also extra live performances from 1949 and 1956,
the latter of which is particularly fine. It is conducted wonderfully by Dimitri
Mitropoulos. Just listen to the last two acts!
Jussi Björling Appreciation Society is there to keep the legacy of
the Swedish tenor alive, and we issue a magazine annually. This will give
members advance notice of any future releases, as well as review them and
highlight any interesting anniversary. Recently, the Society informed its
members of a completely new Björling concert from October 1959, just
before he started his last season at the Metropolitan opera. This last season
from the Met, consisting of performances of Tosca, Faust
and Cavalleria Rusticana, is also the subject of new releases from
Immortal Performances. These
will be reviewed in the next journal of the Appreciation Society. To join
the Society for the very low cost of £20 a year, please contact Robert
Manderson at firstname.lastname@example.org.