Cher Public

Leah and the barihunk

At yesterday’s recital at the Morgan Library, presented by the George London Foundation for Singers, Leah Crocetto sang as her encore Kern and Hammerstein’s “Can’t Help Lovin’ Dat Man.” The performance was quite special; something seemed to open up in her. Her voice bloomed, redolent with melancholy and longing. Mark Markham, her pianist, urged her on with his jazzy playing; together they developed a symbiotic rapport—they listened to each other, let loose, and had a good time. It was a magical moment, exemplary of all that is wonderful about live performance.  Read more »

Apparition

There was a moment during Natalie Dessay’s performance of Schubert’s “Gretchen am Spinnrade” when the singer summoned the ghost of her former self. It was on the word Kuß!: her voice opened majestically, blooming with a youthful vibrancy. It brought back memories of her great successes on the operatic stage—Ophelia, Lucia, Zerbinetta—the performances that made her an international star.  Read more »

Head space

The best part of Paul Appleby’s recital for the Philadelphia Chamber Society came in his last two groups—five songs by Charles Ives followed immediately by three Ned Rorem songs to texts by Paul Goodman. Deftly accompanied by Ken Noda, Appleby showed a virtually perfectly controlled head voice, well balanced with a wide dynamic range, including a sweetly spun pianissimo that never became falsetto.  Read more »

Light from shadow

Javier Camarena offered a performance carefully calibrated to a more intimate venue that nonetheless offered emotionally potent results.

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Blackberry winner

Washingtonians enjoyed a happy reunion this past Sunday with David Daniels.

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Who’s that girl?

Diana Damrau is a great flirt.

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Beyond the blue horizon

Besides the heavens and a sweater in The Devil Wears Prada, it is the hue of Hibla Gerzmava’s soprano, in contrast to the red or rose or red-orange voices of most sopranos.

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From the depths

I was greatly anticipating Karita Mattila’s recital on Friday in Toronto’s Koerner Hall.

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Unadorned

There was wonder and magic last night in Philly when The Philadelphia Chamber Music Society presented British tenor Mark Padmore and American pianist Jonathan Biss in a recital devoted to the songs of Schumann, Tippett, and Fauré.

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Nightingale

Readers of this site are typically up to speed on emerging vocal talents, so clearly there is no need for me to write a review of Chilean-German soprano Carolina Ullrich’s riveting recital at the Paris Opera?

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