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Homage: The Age of the Diva ~ Renee Fleming

4.5 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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Audio CD, October 17, 2006
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Product Description

Acclaimed throughout the world's great opera houses, American soprano Renee Fleming enjoys particular success in roles from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, when glorious vocal writing and opulent orchestrations took the art of opera to new heights. In studying and performing this passionately lyrical music, Fleming became increasingly fascinated with her predecessors-sopranos of a golden age who made this intensely emotional music their own. Homage: The age of the Diva is a tribute to these iconic sopranos and their signature arias.

About the Artist

American soprano Renée Fleming continues to thrill audiences with a voice described as the "gold standard of soprano sound," a meticulous and dazzling gift for characterization, and a rare stylistic versatility. Her superb artistry has inspired her instatement as a Chevalier de la Légion d'Honneur by the French government (2005), as well as the "Renée Fleming Iris" (2004) and master chef Daniel Boulud's dessert "La Diva Renée" (1999).

A two-time Grammy winner, Ms. Fleming has been an exclusive recording artist with Decca since 1995. Her newest CD, comprising rarely-heard works associated with great singers of the past, releases in Fall 2006. The most recent of her numerous recordings include the Grammy-nominated CD of Strauss' Daphne conducted by Semyon Bychkov (2005), "Sacred Songs" (2005), the jazz recording "Haunted Heart" (2005), "Renée Fleming: Handel" (2004), and the movie soundtrack to "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King" (2003). Her work has earned nine Grammy nominations as well as the Classical Brits Awards in 2004 for Outstanding Contribution to Music, and in 2003 for Female Artist of the Year. That same year, she received Honorary Membership in the Royal Academy of Music and an honorary doctorate from The Juilliard School (where she was also commencement speaker). Ms. Fleming's most recent film appearances are in Phil Grabsky's 2006 documentary, "In Search of Mozart," celebrating the 250th anniversary of the composer's birth, and in the 2006-07 release of the major motion picture, "Margaret."

An advocate for literacy and an avid reader, Renée Fleming has been featured in promotional campaigns for the Association of American Publishers (Get Caught Reading), and the Magazine Publishers of America's READ poster campaign for the American Library Association. She was honored by The New York Public Library as a "Library Lion." Her book, "The Inner Voice," was published by Viking Penguin in 2004, and released in paperback by Penguin the following year. An intimate account of her career and creative process, the book is also published in France by Fayard Editions, in the United Kingdom by Virgin Books, by Henschel Verlag in Germany, and Shunjusha in Japan.

Among her earlier awards are the Commandeur de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from the French government (2002); the 2000 Gift of Music Award from the Orchestra of St. Luke's, honoring individuals who have made a significant contribution to the world of classical music; and the first Solti Prize of l'Académie du Disque Lyrique for her outstanding recording artistry (1996). A passionate champion of creativity in the arts, Ms. Fleming is both a proponent of new music - having had many works written for her - and an advocate for the revival of overlooked masterpieces. She is also a member of the Board of Trustees of the Carnegie Hall Corporation and of the Advisory Board of the White Nights Foundation of America.

In addition to her work on the stage and in recordings, Renée Fleming has represented Rolex timepieces in print advertising since 2001, and has served as the inspiration for the main character in novelist Ann Patchett's best-selling book, Bel Canto (2002). In 2005, her prominence led to honors from the Lotos Club, Distinguished Daughters of Pennsylvania, and in the cover story of Smithsonian Magazine's special anniversary issue, spotlighting "35 Who Made a Difference." In 2001, she was added Mr. Blackwell's best dressed list, and People magazine named her one of its "25 Most Intriguing People of 2000." Couturier Gianfranco Ferré has designed Ms. Fleming's stage gowns since 1998, and Issey Miyake, Vivienne Westwood, Bill Blass and Oscar de la Renta have created gowns for her as well.

Renée Fleming studied at The Juilliard School and holds degrees from the State University of New York at Potsdam and the Eastman School of Music. In early years, she was a recipient of a Fulbright Scholarship to Germany. A winner of the Metropolitan Opera National Auditions, she was also the recipient of a Richard Tucker Award, George London Prize, and the Grand Prix at the International Singing Competition in Belgium.

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Product details

  • Orchestra: Orchestra of the Marinsky Theatre
  • Conductor: Valery Gergiev
  • Composer: Bedrich Smetana, Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Giacomo Puccini, Erich Korngold, Charles Gounod, et al.
  • Audio CD (October 17, 2006)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Decca
  • ASIN: B000HXDEV2
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #151,348 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
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