HOMAGE TO MARIA CALLAS: Angela Gheorghiu; Royal Philharmonic Orch/Armiliato

Tribute to La Divina: Gheorghiu treads the path of Callas.

Angela Gheorghiu pays tribute to Maria Callas in this collection of verismo arias closely associated with La Divina. Gheorghiu is no more the “Next Callas” than any other soprano, but in terms of repertoire and prima donna glamour, she’s arguably the best qualified for a venture such as this.

Gheorghiu is in strong form, if not quite as versatile as her illustrious predecessor. She’s a resplendently flighty Nedda, revels in the lachrymose possibilities of Le Cid and Medea, and is of course marvellous as Violetta, a role which is as much hers as Callas’s these days.

The breathy girlishness of Marguerite’s Jewel Song and Mimì’s Donde lieta is less appealing, however, while Delilah needs a smokier, more seductive timbre than she can muster. Comparisons aside, though, this stands alone as a solid representation of Gheorghiu’s artistry – sometimes mannered, sometimes compelling and very pretty – with Armiliato mostly following her lead.

There’s just one oddity on this album: a digitally manipulated “duet” between Gheorghiu and, yes, Callas, singing Carmen’s Habanera. It’s a strange idea and frankly unnecessary, but it’s not quite as kitschy as it could have been, and shouldn’t deter those keen to hear Gheorghiu in the rest of the repertoire on offer here.

Copyright © Limelight Magazine. All rights reserved

This article appeared in the December, 2011 issue of Limelight Magazine.

What are your thoughts on this article? Have your say and leave your comments below.
NOTE: You must be a registered member of Limelight to post a comment.
Click here to login | Click here to register
Please read our guidelines on commenting. Offending posts will be removed and your access may be suspended. Abusive or obscene language will not be tolerated. The comments below do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Limelight or its employees.
HOMAGE TO MARIA CALLAS: Angela Gheorghiu; Royal Philharmonic Orch/Armiliato
Verdict
3.5 out of 5
Info
Supplier:
EMI
Catalog
Composer
Current Issue
May 2014 issue on sale now!
What's On
 
Close Get the May 2014 issue of Limelight mailed to you for $8.50, including postage.

Buy now
Subscribe
Digital Version