Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Vincenzo Bellini, Richard Wagner, Mark Elder|
Jane Eaglen - Bellini & Wagner
Bellini and Wagner may seem like a musical odd couple, but the pairing makes sense since Italian bel canto formed one of the streams that fed the tumultuous torrent of Wagnerian music drama. Jane Eaglen's sumptuous dramat... more »
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Bellini and Wagner may seem like a musical odd couple, but the pairing makes sense since Italian bel canto formed one of the streams that fed the tumultuous torrent of Wagnerian music drama. Jane Eaglen's sumptuous dramatic soprano is a throwback to rare prima donnas of the past who excelled in the music of both composers although, like them, she possesses a voice whose size and amplitude often defeat the microphone's ability to capture it with realism. Still, there's much to admire, including the sheer novelty of so sizeable a voice negotiating Bellini's fragile lines and the sheer beauty of much of the singing. However, despite some thrilling whoops and hollers in Brünnhilde's battle cry from Die Walküre, impact is dimmed by a hint of interpretive blandness, routine orchestral accompaniments, and, especially in Bellini, a rhythmic slackness. An important, if flawed, document of one of the great voices of our age. --Dan Davis
Awsome, Thrilling and Brilliant
aleibo31 | Dobbs Ferry, NY USA | 11/08/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Do not hesitate, simply stop what you are doing and order this CD. Jane Eaglen is the finast drmatic soprano singing today, and one of the three or four best of all time. She has the golden tones of Kirsten Flagstad along with the thrilling high notes of Birgit Nilsson. This disc is a wonderful example of her ability, listen to the beautiful phrasing and tone of Casta Diva and the Liebestoad and then compare it to the awesome attack of the Hojotoho battle cry. I have heard her sing many times at the Met here in NY and each and every time I walk out of the opera house in awe. She sings the most demanding roles in opera and makes it look so easy and effortless it is almost criminal. I recently saw her perform as Isolde, opposite Ben Heppner, and her voice was as glorious at the end as it was five hours earlier. She is the BOMB."
essmac | Nashville, TN USA | 04/18/2000
(3 out of 5 stars)
"You at least have to hand it to Ms. Eaglen for doing Wagner and Bellini. It's wonderful that someone still finds it important to do both, realizing how much a Wagnerian performance can benefit from some bel canto proficiency. Still, the Bellini just seems a little limp. In interviews, Ms. Eaglen seems like a humorous, opinionated, forthright person, but these qualities don't come across in this recording. However, if your main interest is a Valkyrie warcry complete with trills as written, you won't be disappointed."
Not Whitney Houston
H. F. Corbin | ATLANTA, GA USA | 02/10/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The British soprano Jane Eaglen has chosen selections from Bellini and Wagner for her first recording, and what an amazing CD this is. Apparently there isn't much she isn't capable of doing with this glorious voice. From pianissimo high notes to the dramatic, her voice soars and swells. All the arias here are altogether wonderful-- from "Casta diva" to "Brunnhilde's Battle Cry" and "Brunnhilde's Immolation Scene," the first Wagner, according to the notes, that Mr. Eaglen sang in public while still in her early 20's.
The notes, both about the singer and the selections, are most informative. Quoting from her commentary: "Wagner wrote dramatic music that should be sung beautifully and Bellini wrote beautiful music that should be sung dramatically." And finally, when Ms. Eaglen began her first voice lessons while still a teenager, she realized immediately, to her everlasting credit, that she wasn't a pop singer. "There was no way I could make myself sound like Whitney Houston," she says. While there is certainly nothing wrong with Houston's voice-- some of her music I like a great deal-- we can all be thankful that this great voice wasn't wasted on pop music.
This very fine CD will bring you much pleasure."