Recital

‘Maria’ 
Cecilia Bartoli (mez) Orchestra La Scintilla / Adám Fischer 
Decca  475 9077DH 

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No question that this lavishly presented album is a star vehicle, but its titular star has been dead for nearly two centuries. Still, for singerphiles, the name of Maria Malibran represents a talent and a charisma that had the likes of Bellini, Rossini and Verdi riveted. It would clearly take a singer of exceptional personality and technique to suggest what it might have been like to have heard the iconic mezzo (whose myth is all the greater for having died before the age of 30). Bartoli delivered that. “This new recital is a brilliant summation of Bartoli’s art,” wrote John Steane. “The concentration of a scorching will-power is strikingly caught in her performances…there is no doubt about the magical effect of Malibran’s singing upon her audiences. If it was anything like the spell Bartoli herself casts…it must have been memorable indeed.”

 

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