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  • David Daniels: Serenade
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David Daniels: Serenade

22 customer reviews

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Audio CD, June 6, 2000
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Editorial Reviews

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It's a truism by now that countertenors have made a notable comeback in our time, but David Daniels--Amazon.com's Opera & Vocal Artist of 2000--isn't about to rest on his laurels. As if his recent successes weren't enough to set him apart, on this recital album Daniels forays beyond the countertenor's stereotypical domain of the baroque to interpret lieder of Beethoven and Schubert, as well as French mélodies and Vaughan Williams. A stunningly beautiful disc. --Thomas May

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Product Details

  • Performer: Martin Katz
  • Composer: Franz Schubert, Ludwig van Beethoven, Antonio Caldara, Christoph Willibald Gluck, Charles Gounod, et al.
  • Audio CD (June 6, 2000)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Virgin Classics
  • ASIN: B00004SRG1
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #230,101 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Stephen Jackson on June 9, 2000
Format: Audio CD
What a brave and diverse group of pieces to appear on one recording. When you have heard 20 renditions of Dowlands "Lute Songs", no matter how beautiful, they simply get OLD. These pieces, ranging from old Italian (arie antique) through Romanticism and 20th century (albeit not my first choice of works) are ALL given a smooth and emotive performance. The only real fault I have with this disk at ALL is that the recording levels are a little inconsistent. This is barely an issue, but one that bothered me just a touch. Daniels moves full force into these pieces with NO reluctance to reach and stretch his voice throughout it's rich and magnificent range. While some may criticize his use of Vibrato and extreme variations in dynamics (which I particularly enjoy), this unique sound sets him apart from other well known counter-tenors. (like Brian Asawa, Deller and Otten) His technique and production are faultless throughout with only the VERY rare "odd' intonation or vowel. (as a composer and countertenor, I am must say that some of these pieces are NOT written to avoid these sounds <particularly the Vaghan Williams, but to a lesser extent, also the Gounod> and thus they are completely natural to both the countertenor voice and the artistic integrity of the piece.) Perhaps it is inherent in the production of the counter-tenor voice that Italian and German are more at home than English.
My favorites so far: Nacht und Traume -- beautiful legato and sensitivity
Pur dicesti -- such a fun song anyway.. Daniels sounds perfect here.
Absence -- exquisite artistry on the chanson style
La belle Jeunesse -- Vocal fireworks here.. I do not ever expect to hear this recorded by another counter-tenor, even the adventurous Me!
All in all, this is a REQUIRED purchase for countertenor fans and singers, and a STRONG RECOMMEND for anyone who loves good classical art songs.
Stephen Jackson thornblack@aol.com
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful By P H Wan on July 27, 2000
Format: Audio CD
There have been a number of countertenors lurking around providing us with a very pleasant sort of sound in recent years. Nice and pleasant as these voices can be, one can't really compare them with Daniels. He shows us how he is in control, in different ranges of the voice, and in different repertoire.
This disc consists of a very well chosen programme and Daniels demonstrates his ability to do everything, whether it's lirico-cantabile-pianissimo, or espressivo-con fuoco-fortissimo. I really hope that with this voice and excellent technique, Daniels can change people's conception of the countertenor as a voice: it's not simply a novelty or token voice part for Baroque only.
If you like vocal music / opera and are sick of one of the following:1. Sopranos with no control over dynamics, with a squeeky voice, sing with synthesizers or digital remixed arias, and demonstrate no sense of phrasing; 2. Contraltos who vibrate their way through arias; 3. Tenors who are Pavarotti-wannabes; 4. Basses with no diction, grumble loudly and can't join two notes in a phrase.
...this disc gives us all some hope.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Christopher Forbes on July 31, 2002
Format: Audio CD
At first it seems odd...countertenors are supposed to stay within certain boundaries. We let them have Baroque music, and even Gluck, and of course we let them have 20th century things written specifically for them, especially Britten. But to hear a countertenor singing Schubert, Beethoven or French melodies goes against our expectations. So we think, this must be a gimmick. But then Daniels voice takes over and such questions disappear.
Daniels sings this music as if it was inteneded for the countertenor. His sensitivity to the intimate marriage of text and music is phenomenal and his tone is always light and lyrical. I prefer this to many overblown sopranos that I've heard. Daniels weaves a spell that few singers of any voice type can match.
The Gounod is particularly beautiful. I had not been familiar with Gounod's art song before, and I've been missing something. L'Absent brought tears to my eyes just as the best Melodie of Duparc or Faure. And he sings Schubert as if he was born to it.
If you think you are sick of run of the mill vocal recitals, get this CD. The fresh voice and sheer artistry will astound you!
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Raymond Hui on November 23, 2000
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I cried while I was listening to Daniels sing the Vaughn Williams songs. All the rest were pretty good too, especially the Gounod and Italian songs. I have heard Daniels in his earlier discs and in performance, and I think he is maturing and deepening in both his range and his ability to convey nuance and feeling. Some of my friends have said that his rendition (both) of "Adelaide" were underpowered and wispy, but he is NOT a Heldentenor, has never pretended to be one, and I think an interpretation of "Adelaide" that does not evoke Tristan singing of his Isolde is just as valid. The beauty of his tone is wonderful. His increasing technical prowess as well as ability to project emotion is, in my humble opinion, gaining as the years go by. Do listen to this CD.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 10, 2000
Format: Audio CD
I've heard David Daniels in recital several times, so it's wonderful to have some of his recital repertoire on this CD. Daniels' voice is more thrilling live, as it is with the greatest singers, but this terrific recording gives the listener a good idea of how beautiful and expressive Daniels' voice is. I can't stop playing "Nacht und traume" and "Serenade." What will he record next? I've heard that a complete Rinaldo is due out in October. Can't wait!
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