|New from||Used from|
Audio CD, Audiobook, CD
- Is Discontinued By Manufacturer : No
- Product Dimensions : 12.7 x 14.61 x 1.14 cm; 110 Grams
- Manufacturer : Cbc
- SPARS Code : DDD
- Label : Cbc
- ASIN : B000641ZEK
- Number of discs : 1
- Customer Reviews:
In 2002, the beautiful Canadian-Armenian soprano Isabel Bayrakdarian scored a major success when she appeared as Cleopatra, Queen of Egypt, in Handels opera Giulio Cesare for the Canadian Opera Company. As one critic observed at that time, "Cleopatra is one of Handels most superb, and psychologically intricate, creations. The luminous Bayrakdarian has made a wonderful beginning in a role she will surely take to the great stages of the worldat first childishly seductive, then calculating, and ultimately revealing a profound nobility and vulnerability." For her third CD for CBC Records, Ms. Bayrakdarian has chosen arias from four works focusing on the Egyptian femme-fatale.
Review this product
Top reviews from other countries
And the Cleopatra "concept" album approach here, while seemingly a good idea on the face of it, in the end doesn't add up to much. But it does provide the main reason to own this disc: the last section consists of excerpts from the Hamburg composer Johann Mattheson's "Cleopatra"--the first recording of anything from this opera. There's very little Mattheson (1681-1764) in the catalog, and given the quality of the arias presented here, there should be a lot more. Mattheson conveys the emotionalism of the Cleopatra character very well, and Bayrakdarian's performances of these pieces are the highlights of the recording. And her German pronunciation is pretty good, too.
Bayrakdarian is a lovely young singer with a fresh voice and amazing technique. She charges in with her first aria, Tra le procelle assorte from Graun's Cleopatra e Cesare, singing at breakneck speed and daring, seemingly relishing every challenge the composer has placed in her way. Listening to it is a giddy experience.
She is obviously very confident of her skills, but she does smudge the coloratura in many of these selections, especially - and distressingly - in the Handel pieces. Her singing of of the two most famous arias for Cleopatra from Handel's Giulio Cesare is perhaps the only real disappointment for me in this disc. Perhaps because they are so well-known, and perhaps because my listening will always be haunted by the memory of Beverly Sills' seductive brilliance in the role, Bayrakdarian's singing here seems somewhat cautious and uninvolved.
Much better by far are the Mattheson numbers with which she finishes up. They are dramatic and unusual and Bayrakdarian, seemingly relishing the German language and the personality that language reveals in her, sings them with a passionate commitment and emotional nuance not heard in the previous selections.
Except for the Handel excerpts, this would have my highest recommendation. She is obviously ans exciting young singer who has the potential for a great career.