Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky, Antonin Dvorak|
Renée Fleming - Signatures ~ Great Opera Scenes / Sir Georg Solti
As the possessor of one of the great lyric soprano voices of our time, soprano Renée Fleming is in demand in the world's great opera houses. (It doesn't hurt that she's also lovely and a fine actress.) This album is an out... more »
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Amazon.com essential recording
As the possessor of one of the great lyric soprano voices of our time, soprano Renée Fleming is in demand in the world's great opera houses. (It doesn't hurt that she's also lovely and a fine actress.) This album is an outstanding collection of great arias, ravishingly sung. It shows something of Fleming's range, including as it does music by Mozart, Tchaikovsky, Dvorák (the sumptuous "Song to the Moon" from Rusalka, the best part of the entire opera, and sung here in definitive fashion), Verdi, Britten (an effective "Embroidery Scene" from Peter Grimes), and Richard Strauss. This disc is a good starting point for someone seeking to learn more about operatic singing, and a valuable addition to the library of anyone already converted. Fleming is given strong support by mezzo-soprano Larissa Diadkova, baritone Jonathan Summers, and by the late Sir Georg Solti in one of his last recordings. --Sarah Bryan Miller
Wow . . .
New World Smurf | Richmond, Virginia | 10/15/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Although I've loved classical music since I was a child, I've always found it difficult to enjoy opera--to the untrained ear, opera is just a bunch of people screeching in a foreign language! Coming home after a horrendous day at work one evening, I flipped on the local classical radio station to unwind--and the most absolutely gorgeous soprano voice I had ever heard poured out of the speakers. I literally stopped dead in my tracks to listen. I had no idea what she was singing, but the sound was so beautiful it brought tears to my eyes. When the aria ended, I ran to the phone, called the radio station, and asked who the soprano was. The answer was Renee Fleming. "Signatures" was the first CD of Renee's that I purchased, and even though I've acquired most of her catalog, this is the one I always come back to. The sheer beauty and emotion in her voice transcends any and all barriers. I still am a bit of a neophyte when it comes to opera--okay, a lot of a neophyte--but I know what I like. A great CD to win over opera haters--or at least get them to grudgingly admit that some of it isn't that bad--and a tremendous CD for those who can appreciate the voice of one of the greatest modern sopranos. Bravo, Renee!"
A delightful collection
jhorro | VA | 06/29/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This CD goes beyond its purpose of being a showcase for Renee Fleming. The items for this CD were well-chosen, VERY well-chosen. The excerpt form Verdi's Otello is a flexible reading, catching the dexterity of Fleming's voice. The excerpt from Strauss's opera Daphne is by far the most valuable item on this CD. To have part of this rarely performed opera with Fleming and Solti conducting the LSO is quite special. The excerpt from Rusalka anticipates the success of the complete set and it is obvious that Fleming has affinity for this music. The Figaro and Onegin excerpts will impress but I think are more for variety. The six-minute excerpt from Peter Grimes is not really worth buying the CD for. Fleming is in superb voice and the LSO is on the peak of their form throughout. As great as the entire program is, the Daphne excerpt will make it a classic."
tenor_in_training | 03/02/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I am truly excited about this CD release. As a young man, I would hate to see opera becoming something grandparents talk about remembering the good old times. After all, that's how most of the opera magazines sound these days: Milanov did this and Callas did that and Vickers showed us how to, etc, etc. But, thank God, the art of opera is alive and well, and thanks to great recording technology available today we can enjoy the incredible young artists not only "picking up the torch" and "following the tradition" (which seems to be the highest form of praise in those magazines) but also inventing their own traditions and their own interpretations, which is essential if we want to see the art of opera survive and flourish. Soprano Renée Fleming has been singing major roles for quite some time before Decca finally made this release happen along with several others to follow. It almost appears as though she got her big break too late. Thankfully, that's not the case, this great singer is still in her prime and, as the three-plus years after this recording showed, she will remain on top for quite a few years to come. This CD offers splendidly done scenes and arias from the greatest operas in five different languages of which Ms. Fleming has impeccable command. And what a treat it is to hear Sir Georg Solti at the helm providing beautiful, tactful, and rich orchestration! Ms. Fleming's voice is incredibly resonant and sensuous, simply gorgeous. (No shrieking or loud breathing whatsoever.) And her interpretations never fail to impress with passion and thoughtfulness. I have to mention that her Russian is fantastic for a non-native speaker (btw, listen to the nurse in the letter scene - it's Kirov's Larissa Diadkova). And I also absolutely have to say that Ms. Fleming is the "total package" so to speak - great voice and artistry plus phenomenal good looks. Oh yes, I do imagine her clearly as Countess or Desdemona, and even as Tatiana. This disc also shows why she is one of the most diverse singers in the world; is there something she cannot sing and sing well? Not likely. Not only this album is an absolute must-have for anyone interested in opera, it is also a proud statement that we the young generation will also have stories to tell of great singers with whom we were fortunate to share a time period with."