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Carlos Cogul: Introduction
27 Aug 2007

Carlos Cogul: Introduction

Carlos Cogul is a London vocal coach and an appreciated baritone giving many a recital ……in the London Tube while commuters hastily pass by to catch their trains. Judging from the photo on this CD he is not a young man any more.

Carlos Cogul: Introduction.
Arias from Il Barbiere, Un Ballo, Puritani, Don Giovanni, Pagliacci, Don Carlo, Favorita, Trovatore, Otello, Rigoletto, songs.

Carlos Cogul, baritone, Compagnia d’Opera Italiana Orchestra, Antonello

Chironrecords [CD]

£9.99  Click to buy

Carlos Cogul: Introduction.
Arias from Il Barbiere, Un Ballo, Puritani, Don Giovanni, Pagliacci, Don Carlo, Favorita, Trovatore, Otello, Rigoletto, songs.

Carlos Cogul, baritone, Compagnia d’Opera Italiana Orchestra, Antonello Gotta (cond.)

Chironrecords [CD]

It seems that the label discovered him while he was concertizing in the draughty corridors of one or another station. I would be glad to report that a major voice had been overseen by the opera houses but I fear this is not completely true. Mr. Cogul has a light tenorish baritone, lacking heft in his bottom notes. It is an agreeable sound with a slight vibrato but it is not an operatic voice or to be more specific not a voice which is suited to some of the heaviest arias in the baritone repertoire. There is something too tentative in his singing, hardly daring to attack a note in Favorita; almost like a conservatory student. Though the top is good it doesn’t have a real G in Pagliacci where the voice starts to wobble.

There are some discrepancies too with the orchestra; the ‘Compagnia d’Opera Italiana Orchestra’ conducted by Antonello Gotta. Now that name is not unknown to me as he is the conductor of an enormous number of CD’s which nevertheless are not to be found in most opera lovers' collections. With his ad hoc orchestra Gotta produces “cantalopera” CD’s; that means just the instrumental accompaniment to hundreds of arias for all kinds of voices. Aspiring singers can then mix their own voice with the orchestra and this explains the discrepancies on the CD. I fear Mr. Cogul is a victim of the times. I’m sure he would have been a very attractive performer in operetta and classical musical half a century ago but unhappily those times have gone. Of course it must be frustrating for someone that probably far less talented singers like Watson and Flanders own horror Helmut Lotti are treated as if they have a voice but light baritones are not much in demand anymore. Personally I enjoyed Mr. Cogul far more in his attractive version of some pop songs and I would be glad to hear him in some Lloyd Webber. But it is sometimes difficult to face the whole unmitigated truth on one’s own vocal means when someone is severely bitten by the operatic bug as Mr. Cogul is (he often ardently raises his voice on the web to praise a singer).

Jan Neckers

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