Sonya Yoncheva, Jennifer Rowley & Chelsea Guo Lead New CD/DVD Releases

By Francisco Salazar

This week audiences can see two recent live performances and a unique solo album by a pianist/soprano. There are also new releases from some of the world’s biggest stars.

Here is a look.

Chopin: In My Voice 

Orchid Classics releases “Chopin: In My Voice,” the debut album of 2020 National Chopin Piano Competition top prize-winner Chelsea Guo. The album showcases the Guo performing simultaneously as a pianist and soprano, in works that show all facets of Frédéric Chopin’s compositional style.

The album opens with Chopin’s complete Preludes, Op. 28, Barcarolle in F-sharp Major, Op. 60, and Fantasie in F minor, Op. 49, and continues with works showcasing Guo’s voice, including the “Moja pieszczotka,” Op. 74 No. 12, “In mir klingt ein Lied” (Étude, Op.10 No.3) with text by Ernst Marischka, and “Di piacer mi balza il cor” from Rossini’s “La Gazza Ladra.”

Drawing Life: Remembering Terezin

The song cycle “Drawing Life: Remembering Terezin” by composer Jocelyn Pook is to be released on disc, 80 years after the establishment of the concentration camp in Terezín in November 1941. Humming Records will release the recording which features soprano Melanie Pappenheim and tenor Lorin Sklamberg.

Love Duets 

C Major Entertainment will release a concert from the Arena di Verona starring Sonya Yoncheva, Vittorio Grigolo, and Plácido Domingo conducting. The concert featured works from “Madama Butterfly,” “La Boheme,” “La traviata,” “Roméo et Juliette,” “Tosca,” and “Manon.” Mihaela Marcu and Davide Luciano also make a special appearance.

Simon Boccanegra

Christian Gerhaher stars in Opernhaus Zürich’s new production of Verdi’s opera “Simon Boccanegra.” Accentus releases the new DVD with Fabio Luisi conducting the opera from a rehearsal hall over half a mile away. Andreas Homoki directs the production which will also stars Christof Fischesser, Otar Jorjikia, Jennifer Rowley, Nicholas Brownlee, Brent Michael Smith.