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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Probably the finest singer before the public today
To put it simply, Joyce DiDonato is the finest coloratura mezzosoprano since Teresa Berganza and Marilyn Horne, and praise can't go much higher than that.
In this recital she visits several temperamental operatic queens from Monteverdi's Ottavia to Handel's Cleopatra, and she is stunning in every aria, her flawless technique, her imagination and sheer virtuosity are...
Published 24 months ago by J. Luis Juarez Echenique

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2 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Emotion still missing
Excellent voice but little or no emotion, in her singing, which leaves everything only half complete. If all you want is high quality sonic aesthetic, without emotion, buy this,. Otherwise, pass.
Published 12 months ago by G. Hungerford


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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Probably the finest singer before the public today, November 29, 2012
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This review is from: Drama Queens (Audio CD)
To put it simply, Joyce DiDonato is the finest coloratura mezzosoprano since Teresa Berganza and Marilyn Horne, and praise can't go much higher than that.
In this recital she visits several temperamental operatic queens from Monteverdi's Ottavia to Handel's Cleopatra, and she is stunning in every aria, her flawless technique, her imagination and sheer virtuosity are a marvel, and she has the Italianate temperament to go with these fiery aristocrats. It's also great that she has included some rare arias from Hasse, Keiser, Orlandini and Giacomelli.
She also has the inestimable contribution of Il Complesso Barocco, who phrase and "act" at once with her.
I saw Joyce DiDonato perform most of this recital live at Carnegie Hall last November 18 and she turned the audience wild, the voice was true and brilliant, no crooning like some Italian girl I can name, DiDonato filled the hall effortlessly, and it was an unforgettable experience.
Now let's hope that Virgin Classics records her in a complete Hasse or Jommelli opera. After the success they had with Leonardo Vinci's Artaserse, a glorious recording, it's only right to give DiDonato the chance to shine in a role written for the great Faustina Bordoni.
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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Amazing Joyce DiDonato Reigns!, November 6, 2012
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This review is from: Drama Queens (Audio CD)
Joyce DiDonato has surprised opera and concertgoers since she first appeared. She is `classified' as a mezzo-soprano, but her range is so extravagantly and securely throughout the territory of mezzo and soprano and coloratura that show has become unclassifiable! Not only does she possess a voice of rich color and perfect technique, but she also happens to be a brilliant actress; even in a small hall recital she brings both intense drama to her `mad' roles and hilarious flair to her lighter roles. It is no accident then that she pulls off this CD concept so completely successfully.

In conjunction with the ensemble Il Complesso Barocco conducted by Alan Curtis she surveys a recital of Royal arias form the 17th and 18th centuries, tasting the successes of the well known Handel, Haydn, Monteverdi and Vivaldi as well as the near forgotten Orlandinii, Keiser, Hasse and Porta. The roles she brings to life are all royal personages and each one is a staggering challenge for any singer. According to DiDonato, `"For me, this is my most exciting recording project to date because it is everything I deeply adore about the world of opera: high drama, profound emotion, fearless vocal writing, time-stopping passages, historical significance and real discovery. What more could I ask for?'

The works on this recording are as follows:

Berenice: Da torbida procella by Giuseppe Maria Orlandini
Ifigenia: Madre diletta, abbracciami by Giovanni Porta
Alcina: Ma quando tornerai by George Frideric Handel .
Galsuinde: Lasciami piangere by Reinhard Keiser
Giulio Cesare in Egitto: Piangero la sorte mia... by George Frideric Handel
Antonio e Cleopatra: Morte col fiero aspetto by Johann Adolf Hasse
Orontea: Intorno all'idol mio by Pietro Antonio Cesti
Alessandro: Brilla nell' alma un non inteso ancor by George Frideric Handel
Die edelmüthige Octavia: Geloso sospetto by Reinhard Keiser
L'Incoronazione di Poppea: Disprezzata Regina by Claudio Monteverdi
Sposa son disprezzata by Geminiano Giacomelli
Berenice: Col versar, barbaro, il sangue by Giuseppe Maria Orlandini
Armida: Odio, furor, dispetto by Franz Joseph Haydn

Everything about this dazzling recital works. Highly recommended. Grady Harp, November 12
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Joyce DiDonato Does Drama Like Noone Else, November 11, 2012
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Marguerite Foxon (Sydney, Australia) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Drama Queens (Audio CD)
Joyce DiDonato is a phenomenal singer who is seems to just get better and better. I have almost every CD on which she performs, and this is definitely the best, and a Grammy in waiting for sure, in my humble opinion. She sings with such energy, passion (even fury), and brilliance that it leaves one breathless and wanting more. I have found myself playing the CD over and over on my iPod and cannot get enough of it. What I really like is that she has included some most unusual pieces in the listing. If you love baroque vocal performance, do not pass this one by. If you are already a Joyce DiDonato fan but you've havent already bought it let me tell you - its a must for your DiDonato collection! This is mezzo singing at its finest. Well done Joyce! A great concept, and a marvelous performance on disc.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Joyce DiDonato Thrills With Her "Trills", December 17, 2012
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This review is from: Drama Queens (Audio CD)
Ms. DiDonato is a vocal virtuoso of the first magnitude. I happen to love the complexity and speed of the music of the Baroque era, but some of the selections on this album are literally hair-raising. She has a superb ear and musical memory for the runs, patterns, twirls and swirls of the style, but can also sing a lovely lyrical line with pathos and incredible control. After listening several times to the album, I found that I wanted to know more of this fine artist.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars call it coloratura, call it fioratura: it's superb, June 10, 2013
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This review is from: Drama Queens (Audio CD)
This CD presents Ms. DiDonato in a dizzying array of mezzo-soprano coloratura arias, composed basically by Baroque-into-early-Classic composers, the names of whom may be new to listeners. (There are no bios in the program notes.) The arias (in most cases) are set pieces of drama, power, and range that are excerpted from otherwise forgettable operas. Ms. DiDonato's ability to handle stratospheric tessitura is well known; it is thoroughly presented on this CD. Her below-the-staff tones are rich, full, velvety. What more could one ask for? As to her vocal acrobatics: the intonation is perfect, the effortless flow of rapid scales and larger intervals is thrilling. DiDonato uses all of her formidable technical and musical talents in this presentation, such that the message of each aria is rich and complete.
The authentic-instruments ensemble is excellent, and appropriate for this repertoire. Since several of the arias were in such keys as F-sharp Minor and B Major, my supposition is that the tuning was down to A=432, or thereabouts.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, July 11, 2014
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This review is from: Drama Queens (MP3 Music)
Joyce is the Creme De Creme of the sopranos of today.
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5.0 out of 5 stars My favored mezzo soprano, January 29, 2014
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This review is from: Drama Queens (Audio CD)
What can I say? I ordered a CD, and I received exactly what I was paying for - great personality, great voice, great technique.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfection, January 8, 2013
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This review is from: Drama Queens (Audio CD)
Joyce Didonato is at the top of her game and one of the best vocalists of our day. Smart selection of songs wonderfully produced and all starring Ms Didonato's sterling voice.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Who is better at bel canto in her Fach??, September 2, 2013
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This review is from: Drama Queens (Audio CD)
No one! It is a joy to hear her doing what she obviously loves to do and does better than anyone. What a vocal acrobat! But it may be acrobatics, but the feeling and the emotion is just as present. She is a treasure!
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Mezzo, March 12, 2013
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This review is from: Drama Queens (Audio CD)
Joyce DiDonato is emerging as one of the great mezzo sopranos of our generation. Her portrayal of Maria Stuarda at the Met stands out as one of the finest performances by anyone at the Met this season (2012/13). This album showcases the wonderful dramatic interpretation she can bring to a role. It's a CD to listen to over and over.
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Drama Queens
Drama Queens by Joyce DiDonato (Audio CD - 2012)
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