The best of opera on record 2003, presented by Stephanie Hughes.
It's a golden age in the history of opera recordings - more are becoming available on CD than ever before: new recordings, reissues of classic recordings of the past, and first issues of some of the great performances of the twentieth century from opera houses across the world.
Over the Christmas and New Year fortnight, Stephanie presents complete recordings and highlights from the best of what's hit the shelves in 2003.
Today, Italian opera from Bellini to Puccini and beyond, featuring Maria Callas as Bellini's Norma, and Julia Varady and Jussi Björling in Verdi.
Plus brand-new recordings of an opera by Ponchielli that isn't La Gioconda; and the biggest nose on stage: Cyrano de Bergerac by the man most famous for finishing Puccini's Turandot - Franco Alfano.