DVD and CD Reviews

DVD and CD Reviews In Review
‘Giovanna D’Arco’ DVD Review
During the 2015-16 season, the Teatro alla Scala revived Verdi's rarely performed opera "Giovanna d'Arco." The opera, while never a standard piece of the repertoire, had a slight resurgence thanks to Renata Tebaldi and Monserrat Caballe in the mid 1900s. Other performers like Anna Moffo, Katia Ricciarelli, and Mariella Devia recorded the opening aria "Sempre all'alba." But it was still rare to see a stage performance with a big diva.…
DVD and CD Reviews In Review
Prologue CD Review: Francesca Aspromonte’s Vocal Beauty Is Glorious In Experimental Baroque Album
The Italian soprano Francesca Aspromonte has already attracted significant attention, within the field of Early Music, for her stunning performances on the opera stage and in the concert hall. With the release, earlier this month, of her first solo CD entitled “Prologue,” she takes the next step in cementing her already blossoming reputation. From opera’s very beginnings, and lasting around 100 years, composers prefaced their works with a prologue, which…
DVD and CD Reviews In Review
Verdi CD Review: Sonya Yoncheva’s New Album Is A Mixed Bag Of The Composer’s Favorites
Three years ago when Sonya Yoncheva recorded her first album "Paris Mon Amour," it was a triumph. It was an album filled with a variety of interesting repertoire and a voice with great color and flexibility. It captured a rising star that was on the path to stardom and gave an incredible vibrancy to each reading on the album. Fast forward to 2018 for Yoncheva's highly anticipated Verdi album. The…
DVD and CD Reviews In Review
CD Review: Paterson and Cote’s ‘Three Way’ Not Your Usual Sex Opera
Is it possible to create something risqué yet non-controversial at the same time? Something that tackles sexually-charged topics such as the LGBTQ community, dominatrices, couple swapping and the role of artificial intelligence in relationships? Can all of this be depicted in a way that isn’t preachy or pejorative in these polarizing times? Nobody probably asked themselves these questions but if anyone did, they have an answer in what composer Robert…
DVD and CD Reviews In Review
Rigoletto CD Review: Dmitri Hvorostovsky Delivers Immersive Performance In Otherwise Disappointing Package
For years Dmitri Hvorostovsky was one of the leading interpreters of “Rigoletto” around the world. And while there are many baritones in the modern era that have successfully realized one of the most complex characters of the Verdi canon, few navigated the emotional turmoil quite the way the great Russian baritone did. He brought crudeness and ugliness to his vocal interpretation but also managed to exude warmth and tenderness in…
DVD and CD Reviews In Review
‘Mozart’ CD Review: Juan Diego Flórez and Conductor Riccardo Minasi Deliver Magical Mozart Experience
As he moves into heavier repertoire, one composer has been rather absent from the repertoire of Peruvian tenor Juan Diego Flórez – Mozart. Listening to him dominate the bel canto repertoire, it has always been of great interest to hear this brilliant and polished singing actor take a stab at a composer equally noted for his polish and finesse. The tenor has taken a few forays into the work of…
DVD and CD Reviews In Review
Dreams CD Review: Pretty Yende Offers Virtuosic Power In Second Album
Pretty Yende has become one of the world's most sought-after singers for her energetic and positive stage presence. Her Cinderella story is widely recognized and her performances have become must-see events. Having dominated the world's greatest stages and released her first album "A Journey," Yende now brings audiences a taste of what is to come in her second album "Dreams." Like her first album, which explored her career path from significant and meaningful…
DVD and CD Reviews In Review
Maria Callas: The Live Recordings CD Review: A 42 Disc Box Set With Rare Gems & Wonderful Remasterings
For years Warner Classics has remastered Maria Callas' collections for opera lovers, releasing various sets that showcase the art of the legendary soprano. After releasing the complete studio recordings, Warner Classics returns with "Maria Callas: Live Remastered Recordings." Ther 42-disc box set comes on the heels of the 40th anniversary of La Divina's death and brings many of the soprano's signature roles to the forefront. For fans of the soprano, many…
DVD and CD Reviews In Review
L’Opera CD Review: Jonas Kaufmann’s Latest Album Is Full of Vocal Genius
Can you believe that “L’Opera” is tenor Jonas Kaufmann’s first and only album fully dedicated to French Opera? I had to look at his collection of CDs to make sure that statement wasn’t actually true, but it is. His 2007 album for Decca, “Romantic Arias” is a mix of different music and does include some of the big hits from the French repertoire, but his 2017 album, is effectively the…
DVD and CD Reviews In Review
La Favorite DVD Review: Elina Garanca And Matthew Polenzani Are Outstanding In This Deutsche Grammophon Release
Last year the Bayerische Staatsoper opened a new production of Donizetti's beloved French work "La Favorite." It was specifically created for Elīna Garanča, who was making her staged role debut after having impressed in the work in a concert performance at the Salzburg Festival alongside Juan Diego Flórez. This time around the company brought along two of her frequent collaborators, Mariusz Kwiecien and Matthew Polenzani, and the results were outstanding if not…