Sutherland, Callas and Sills. And the venom is spewed and the imbecilic attacks rage on. They were all three wonderful. So are others, but I for one like them the best. Callas was my first love, she's strange, but I still like her, her vicious off-stage personality (which I have a recording of) notwithstanding. How silly! I don't like Sutherland singing anything but coloratura, sorry, but all else bores me. I bought a CD of her Suor Angelica and hated and trashed it. But coloratura, she's a dream. Sills, however, is my favorite. I can't resist that silky, butter melting on a plate voice of hers. And her coloratura (and Callas') is no schlock either. But this opera. It was smooth and warm and beautiful. The sound quality was perfect. It was all sung in French, and for once the opera sounded it. It begins with some spoken dialogue (by the Muse) which turned me off and I was mad as hell and decided to throw the thing away, I thought I had been duped, cheated into another comic opera. But (sigh), I went back and discovered to my joy that it is all sung, and beautifully. Sills plays all Hoffman's loves. The trio at the end of Antonia's act was wonderful as far as the women went, but (sigh) Dr. Miracle was again the weak link. No one I've heard beats Bacquier on the Sutherland (a version with dialogue, sad to say) recording, but this one came close. The trio was beautiful of course (with that music and good singers, how could it miss), but I thought it lacked the spark on Sutherland's version. I'm sure I've enraged Callas fanatics and Sutherland devotees and maybe even a Sills fan or two. So be it. The order of acts are Olympia, Giulietta and Antonia. I enjoyed the opera which arrived yesterday and which I listened to this morning. If you like/love Sills as I do, I recommend it. Otherwise it's just another Hoffmann.