On August 25, Joyce DiDonato and pianist David Zobel join forces for a sold-out performance of Schubert’s profound Winterreise at the Canònica de Santa Maria de Vilabertran in Spain. The performance marks Ms. DiDonato’s debut singing at the Schubertíada, held every year in the village of Vilabertran. The event focuses on the musical work of Schubert and the German Romantic movement in general.
Joyce gave her first performance of Winterreise this past season with her colleague Yannick Nézet-Séguin in her hometown of Kansas City. Critics and audiences raved about their moving performance:
“Before the first (and longest) song of the cycle, “Good Night,” a single line appeared on the screen above the piano where the full house could follow the English translation of the German text: “I received his journal in the post.” In DiDonato’s interpretation, she doesn’t throw this goodbye package in the trash, forget him, and move on. She takes it hard, almost like she sings these words ceaselessly as a type of penance.
Not only is DiDonato one of the finest mezzo-sopranos on the planet with extraordinary technique, she is a skilled actress from her time in opera. She channels the overpowering melancholy and frigid despair that her ex pours out, right from the opening song: “The girl spoke of love, her mother even of marriage / Now the world is dismal, the path veiled in snow.” (IN Kansas City)