Hey! I have been writing no CD reviews for a while and I kinda miss it on my blog (yeah…that sounds weird)…anyway I have something to tell you.
Recently I’ve listened to solo recordings of the talented mezzo soprano Joyce DiDonato. Joyce is a successful American opera singer. She regularly appears on stages like Royal Opera House, Metropolitan Opera etc. It’s very interesting to follow her career and I always look forward to hearing new materials from her! I already posted about her CD «Drama Queens» (which is my favorite!), here I wanna share my impressions of her other recordings: «Furore» and «Rossini: Colbran, the Muse».
«Furore» is a compilation of Handel’s works. I love Handel! His music possesses massiveness and depth which moves people very, very much. Handel is a master of conveying pure emotions like love, anger or despair in his pieces. And Joyce’s CD is also about that. It presents mad scenes from Handel’s operas. The recording has made a complex impression on me. In general, it’s a wonderful tracklist. In my opinion, the most beautiful aria here is «Scherza Infinda» from «Ariodante». It’s one of his best melodies I’ve ever heard! Also I really enjoy excerpts from the opera «Teseo», they are so powerful and passionate in a classic Handel way:). In all this flood of admiration I have one «but» which is «Hercules». Let’s say, it’s not my cup of tea, mostly because of English language. I don’t like when baroque arias are sung in it. Maybe you will like them as you can understand every word, it’s up to you:). Again, in a whole it’s an amazing work! Joyce demonstrates her great vocal and artistic skills here like nowhere else. You should be a rich personality to make this music work. Yankeediva does it with flying colors showing us a huge range of emotions!
«Rossini: Colbran, the Muse» (2009)
Rossini and Joyce are a great union! We can observe Joyce in this repertoire very often and we are happy! Rossini is a genius of a musical comedy, I think. Some people who don’t like him say: «The same melody every time, it’s boring!». But I object!!! It’s his style, it’s not the same! Isabella Colbran was Rossini’s wife. This was her who sang the premieres of the operas presented in this CD. Now Joyce is following her steps. I’ve discovered a lot of fantastic pieces which I’ve never heard before! The aria from «Maometto II» is marvellous! I’m really gonna find this rarely performed opera and watch it cause it’s the second time I enjoy the extract from it (the first time was when I listened to the aria from Elina Garanca’s CD «Bel Canto»). Also I’m looking forward to seeing Joyce as Elena (in «La donna del lago») and Semiramide (in «Semiramide»). The music of these two operas is great as well with beautiful choir singing in the background. Joyce has already sung Elena in Covent Garden, in the season 2014-15 she is gonna perform with it at the Met. Rumor has it, she’ll make her debut as Semiramide in the season 2015-16 again at the Met! It seems to me that she sounds perfect in Rossini repertoire, so I’m really excited about it!!!
Big surprise for me is the opera «Otello». It’s very unusual of Rossini to show us a sad side of him. Sometimes I unintentionally recognize some Donizetti’s intonations and, so to say, «means» like a harp solo, a «roll call» with a flute etc. The most striking example is «Assisa appie d'un salice». I was glad to suddenly hear a wonderful Rossini singer Lawrence Brownlee there. This opera is in my waiting list too:). The aria from «Elisabetta, regina d'Inghilterra» is also very interesting cause it’s sort of a first version of a famous «Una voce poco fa», yeah…Rossini liked to steal his own melodies:))).
So this album is absolutely worth listening if you’re a big fan of Rossini or Joyce!
P.S. Some interesting and useful links for you, guys: