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Songplay – coming to you in February 2019

Joyce DiDonato greets you with a song in her heart and twinkle in her eye. The American mezzo-soprano’s album Songplay unites extraordinary musicians from the varied worlds of opera, jazz and tango in the pure pleasure of improvisation, experimentation and exchange. Together they create their own musical language, surprising listeners with timeless melodies transformed and universal stories retold over centuries; songs in English, in Italian and – naturally – in the universal language of music.

‘I had one of the most exhilarating musical weeks of my life recording the album Songplay with a world-class band. Trust me: you’re going to remember each one of these guys! It’s an incredible family of musicians – bass, piano, trumpet, drums and bandoneon. We have essentially created our own sound-world, fusing together music from the Baroque era and classics from the jazz world – with a few other surprises tossed in,’ explains Joyce. ‘We’ve all let down our guard (some of us have even let down our hair) and we’ve each expanded the musical traditions that we have come from to create our own style for this album. It’s joyful, it’s exuberant, it celebrates great music, and it shines a spotlight on the timeless nature of a great song. I hope you’ll want to hear this album over and over, and will grow to appreciate the value of playing with a song!’

On Songplay, along with her hand-picked band led by pianist and arranger Craig Terry, Joyce draws inspiration from Cavalli and Chet Baker in equal measure. The languishing heart in Giordani’s Car mio benis as emotionally charged as Jerry Bock’s hopeful Will he like me? Perhaps the most compelling reminder of how the music of Songplay breaks down barriers is from DiDonato’s experience leading vocal and composition workshops in the New York prison Sing Sing, where one of the men who is incarcerated was particularly moved upon hearing her rendition of Car mio ben: ‘I feel like I’ve known this song my whole life.’

Joyce DiDonato’s stellar credentials in Baroque and Italian arias didn’t stop her from exploring her beloved American Songbook alongside Haydn and Rossini for the GRAMMY Award-winning album Joyce & Tony: Live from Wigmore Hall. With In War and Peace, she demonstrated the healing power of music that brings people together on the path towards peace. This album picks up from that place of peace and leaps into the realm of joy: it is an all-encompassing celebration of song – one in which there are no boundaries or rules. Let’s play.

Joyce DiDonato, voice
Craig Terry, keys
Chuck Israels, double bass
Jimmy Madison, drums
Lautaro Greco, bandoneon
Charlie Porter, trumpet

Songplay on tour:
18 February 2019 – Taper Auditorium – Seattle
20 February 2019 – Zellerbach Hall –Berkeley
25 February 2019 – Ordway Music Theatre – St Paul
27 February 2019 – Oberlin Conservatory
1 March 2019 – NEC’s Jordan Hall – Boston
10 March 2019 – Richardson Auditorium – Princeton

Photo: Chris Singer

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Exquisite partners in every way .... ! https://t.co/4Ee1QXn3w8

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I know it's been a hot summer, but I hope you all can stand to embrace "Into the Fire" ~ it was a great joy for us… https://t.co/R95m1rPdMj

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Such a meaningful, transformative project! #LISTEN https://t.co/G4IER7OUsT

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I am *THRILLED* to let you know that “Shakuntala” - the first preview track of my new album "Into the Fire” has just been released on @AppleMusic and @Spotify. 🎧 Listen to it here: 🔗link in bio. Recorded live at the iconic Wigmore Hall, this recital with my treasured partners, the Brentano Quartet, was conceived around Jake Heggie’s song cycle "Camille Claudel: Into the Fire", a work written for me. Jake is not only a brilliant composer but he has also been a dear friend for many years. This new recording is truly one of most moving projects I’ve ever been part of and I hope will enjoy it. When Camille utters, “Thank you for remembering me” at the conclusion of this beautiful cycle, it is my hope that we not only remember her, but that we vigorously honor her genius and her vision, as well. @warner_classics . . . Photo: @chrissingerme Design: @lennysstudio #camilleclaudel #wigmorehall #brentanoquartet #joycedidonato #jakeheggie #strauss #debussy #lekeu

How to #paella, 101. #summerlovin #hadmesomerice #gambasforever

🎈 I can't even begin to describe how excited I am about the upcoming release of “Songplay” on @warner_classics . It's a truly unique project that unites extraordinary musicians from the worlds of opera, jazz, and tango in the pure pleasure of improvisation, experimentation, and exchange. Together we create our own musical language, surprising listeners with timeless melodies transformed and universal stories retold over centuries; songs in English, in Italian and – naturally – in the universal language of music. I had one of the most exhilarating musical weeks of my life recording the album #Songplay with a world-class band. Trust me: you’re going to remember each one of these guys! It’s an incredible family of musicians – bass, piano, trumpet, drums and bandoneon. We have essentially created our own sound-world, fusing together music from the Baroque era and classics from the jazz world – with a few other surprises tossed in,’ explains Joyce. ‘We’ve all let down our guard (some of us have even let down our hair) and we’ve each expanded the musical traditions that we have come from to create our own style for this album. It’s joyful, it’s exuberant, it celebrates great music, and it shines a spotlight on the timeless nature of a great song. I hope you’ll want to hear this album over and over, and will grow to appreciate the value of playing with a song! #Songplay - coming to you in February 2019. Stay tuned! Photo: @chrissingerme

Who doesn’t love a lady who lives life without apology? #TheFlorenceFoaterJenkinsStory is available NOW on Amazon Prime in the US and UK. At the end of our filming, I had a profound, new level of admiration and love for this astonishing and complex Lady. I believe you will, as well ... #watchnow @primevideouk @primevideo

Magique......

So happy to be back in #Paris for tonight’s #BastilleDay Concert at the #tourdeiffel. #liberté #egalité #fraternité http://www.maisondelaradio.fr/evenement/concert-symphonique/concert-de-paris

I love beginnings. What an inspiring day, yesterday, with dear @nezetseguin, as we begin a new journey together....do, oh DO, stay tuned! #newadventure #themezzoandthemaestro #summerlovin #badenbadenbliss #anticipation

Summer lovin’, has me a bla-hast .....

Leaving Athens with the fullest of hearts, having met these extraordinary - and I do mean EXTRAORDINARY - young men in Athens. They played and sang for me and with me, along with many other beautiful young people, and they deserve every single opportunity in the world. Thank you, boys, for bringing such beauty, joy, love, and peace to me! We will meet again! @alabrasabdullah @pouya.pouya.372 @vic_palazzo2004 #skaramagascamp @elsistemagreece

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There will always be more freedom to acquire and more truth to uncover.

~ Joyce DiDonato