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End of the Year “Best of” Lists

Song recitals can sometimes be stiffly formal affairs, but this charismatic mezzo-soprano made Carnegie Hall feel like a living room when she performed a wide-ranging program of Haydn, Rossini, Cécile Chaminade and Jake Heggie with the pianist David Zobel in March. The event was memorable not only for Ms. DiDonato’s spectacular singing but also for her engaging onstage commentary.” ~ Best of 2011 New York Times

Diva/Divo tops numerous lists as one of the top 10 Classical Recordings of 2011:

~ Place l’opera/Amsterdam: Solo Album of the Year

~ The New Yorker

~ Opera News

~ Time Out, NY: “The notion of doing trouser-role arias and frillier fare on the same disc isn’t altogether new, but it’s never been done with more penetrating insight or stylish range than on this smartly programmed, opulently sung recital from a mezzo who’s become America’s sweetheart.”

~ The Sunday Times

~ The Classical Review: “‘From literally the first note,’ enthused George Loomis, ‘this disc is a joy.’  Clearly reveling in the variety of challenges presented by repertoire gleefully exploiting the gender-bending provocations of trouser and castrato roles, the disc offered irresistible evidence, GL added, of ‘a major artist at the height of her powers.'”

~ Classical KUSC:  “… Joyce’s oh-so painstakingly ordered repertoire of responsorial gender-switching arias is a wonder. Naturally, it’s the alternating Pants Arias, which make this genius of programming possible. Plus it doesn’t hurt to have Joyce’s almost-paradoxically powerful & smooth pipes.”

~ Grammy Nomination for Best Classical Solo Album

~ The Star-Ledger:  “Joyce DiDonato is the reigning queen — or prince — of lyric mezzo-soprano roles. She is at her best in Rossini’s florid music, embodying the feisty, fearless spirit that makes his heroines so endearing. She also maintains jaw-dropping speed, a gratifyingly reliable trill and firm command of her range from its sweetly blooming upper reaches to its warm low notes”

~ San Francisco Classical Voice “But if I had to choose only one, it would be DiDonato’s. Here’s why:  She is astounding [...] This recital contains the 21st century’s counterpart to Golden Age vocalism.”

Broad Stage, Los Angeles

RECITAL TOUR

“OK, I’m a sap. Her Philadelphia Chamber Music Society concert in March was wonderful by any measure. But in a career that has been full of false starts (such as her time at Philadelphia’s Academy of Vocal Arts), Di Donato’s return had special meaning, summed up in her choice of encore: “Over the Rainbow.” A quiet wallop.” ~ Crescendos in a Classical Year The Philadelphia Inquirer

“Cliburn makes the list again. If the vocal recital is on death’s door, as many say it is, then Joyce DiDonato gave it a shot of adrenaline and maybe even a pacemaker. It didn’t matter much what she sang, although the program was interestingly filled with rarities. As to her voice, it is a perfectly trained and beautiful instrument that can easily navigate all of the coloratura roulades and trills of the Rossini repertoire. She is able to float the most beautiful and focused pianissimo line for entire phrases, indeed, for entire songs. She is a real mezzo, and not a push-down soprano or a push-up contralto. She is able to act without “acting” and she struck the perfect balance between what would be acceptable on stage and what works in a recital. The pianist, David Zobel, was a perfect collaborator. He never missed a note and was with her every step of the way. Those who were not in attendance really missed something awesome (as the kids would say) and important (as I would say).” ~ Best of 2011 Theater Jones

CENDRILLION

“Other Covent Garden hits this year have been Laurent Pelly’s production of Massenet’s Cendrillon with a glistening Joyce DiDonato singing the title role: Betrand de Billy’s superb musical direction combined with the directorial master of French opera, Laurent Pelly, made compelling opera.” ~ The Best of 2011 The Huffington Post

4 Comments

  1. Dana said…

    What about the best drag king in the history of mankind: the hottest, sexiest, most credible, and sweetest voiced Isolier? ~ Best of 2011 – Public Opinion

  2. Cristina said…

    Una voz tan increiblemente cálida ,humana,sensible y con una pirotécnia vocal aterciopelada que sobrecoge , una línea de canto extraordinária y de inusual claridad servida con un domínio total de la escena y coronada con una grácia especial.Estaría nombrando todas las virtudes de tu voz pero no acabaría nunca Joyce.

    Brava sigue siempre así y cuida tu voz que és un tesoro de incalculable valor.

    Un abrazo muy fuerte, all my best

    Cristina

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Bring that innocent, childlike sense of wonder to your craft, and do whatever you need to find that truth again. It will continually teach you how to be present, how to be alive, and how to let go. Therein lies not only your artistic freedom, but your personal freedom as well!

~ Joyce DiDonato