Just sit back and enjoy the truly astonishing
firstname.lastname@example.org | Kampen, The Netherlands | 01/28/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This disc has become one of my favourite party tricks, especially for people who do not know Gruberova (and amazingly enough, there are people who don't). From beginning to end this is the purest of pure enchantment. What is even more amazing is that these performances are all recorded "live", with the exception of the "Puritani" aria from an actual series of recitals featuring all the other arias. The "Puritani" is taken from the superb complete recording also available on Nightingale. For the rest, it must have been an evening to remember. The Rimskij-Korsakow aria which opens the disc is hauntingly beautifully rendered and I often delight in seeing the wonderment on my guests' faces as the voice soars effortlessly through the aria. With great joy I can then say: "Well, she was just warming up." Because the rest is fire-works bar none. The "Hamlet" mad scene is nothing short of astonishing, as Gruberova manages to bring Ophelia to life through music which could easily be merely silly and sporadic. She has certain trade-mark phrases (which the sceptics call mannerisms) which heighten the emotional content of both musical line and text to fever pitch. Her "Pirata" might not have the intensity of a Callas, but there are more than enough other qualities to compensate. The recital ends with the gamut of emotions called the "Anna Bolena" mad scene, which has become a bit of a signature tune for the artist. Her ability to change timbre, tone and mood in this scene is miraculous. The coloratura is of course taken for granted, but the intensity of it is in a class of its own. Stunned silence followed by delirious screaming of "brava" is indeed the only appropriate reaction."
Great singing of a great soprano
email@example.com | 04/10/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I cannot understand why Gruberova has been so neglected by the american audiences. Sometimes I belive that it has to do with the style of the singing they are use to, but then I think that it has to do more with their ignorance, or perhaps, both together.This CD, like all the Nigthingale material of Gruberova, was taken from public performances, and Gruberova is just beyond any possible expectation you might have. The voice is perfect. The sound is big, beautiful, incredible in all the impressive tessitura, and the dramma that Gruberova gives to each aria is something you cannot be indiferent at.I recomend this CD for all the public who wishes to hear a great bel canto singing, but more to those who are use to commercial recordings of american sopranos, who, by the way, can take a lesson of singing for the price of the CD."