Search - Ambroise Thomas, Jules Massenet, Jacques Offenbach :: Kathleen Battle - French Opera Arias / Chung

Kathleen Battle - French Opera Arias / Chung
Ambroise Thomas, Jules Massenet, Jacques Offenbach
Kathleen Battle - French Opera Arias / Chung
Genre: Classical
  •  Track Listings (10) - Disc #1


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Simply supeb.
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Kathleen is my absolute favorite opera star. Her angelic voice touches the soul as always and her unmatched technical precision leaves her head above her peers. She truly redefines the word DIVA. I'm afraid I'm going to spoil it for myself due to constant play of this album. I'm looking for a comparable voice for variety. Needless to say, I have failed miserably. The first selection, a little tribute to France, is something else. If I were french, I would initiate a drive to make this the national anthem. This is a must for collector's library."
Good But I Expected Much Better
M. Bish | Rochester, NY United States | 01/31/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)

"As I said in the title of this review, this album is good however I expected better from Kathleen Battle in this repertoire. Better because much of Ms. Battle's recorded output is top-shelf. Like Ms. Battle's other efforts, this CD contains singing that is almost beyond reproach, technically speaking, but for the most part it does not sound as if she is emotionally engaged in the individual arias. (For instance, in the HAMLET aria, her Ophelia sounds entirely too composed. This is, after all, a "mad scene" but it sounds like the LOUISE aria in which the character is waxing poetic on the issue of love.) There is very little, if any, differentiation in the tone color and timbre; it sounds like one long song. Also, many of the high notes (the C's, D's, and E-flats) sound very hard, it's easy to hear the effort it took to ascend to these notes perched near the top of the scale. These notes stand out because the majority of the rest of her range is very limpid and pleasing, as opposed to strident. Also of note, on this recording Ms. Battle has a problem with pushing for a bigger sound that her lyric-coloratura/soubrette voice cannot support. Listen, for instance, to tracks 4 and 10 which cry out to be tackled by a larger instrument with more power. Perhaps had I been unfamiliar with Ms. Battle then I could give this album a 5-star endorsement but, as is, I can only give it 3 stars. Pick up an album on which she sings Mozart, Strauss, or bel canto for that is where she really excels."