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Stella di Napoli - Bel canto opera arias of 19th century Naples, by Pacini, Bellini, Carafa, Rossini, Mercadante, Donizetti, Valentini / Joyce DiDonato, soprano

Album Summary

>Pacini, Giovanni : Stella di Napoli
>Bellini, Vincenzo : Adelson e Salvini (second version)
>Carafa, Michelle : Le nozze di Lammermoor
>Rossini, Gioachino : Zelmira, opera
>Mercadante, Saverio : La vestale
>Donizetti, Gaetano : Elisabetta al castello di Kenilworth
>Bellini, Vincenzo : I Capuleti e Montecchi, opera
>Valentini, Carlo : Il sonnambulo
>Donizetti, Gaetano : Maria Stuarda
>Pacini, Giovanni : Saffo
Performers Conductor Ensembles Composers

Notes & Reviews:

The Observer, 1st August 2014
They allow this adored US mezzo to display her dizzying technical virtuosity, her acting skills and her extravagant sense of drama. The OpTra de Lyon orchestra give characterful support...You may think bel canto recital discs are not your thing. Let Joyce DiDonato convince you otherwise. She did me.

The Times, 29th August 2014
This luscious collection of Italian bel canto opera arias presents the incandescent DiDonato on top form, the creamy tones effortlessly whipped into endless, kaleidoscopic threads of melody...Riccardo Minasi and the Orchestra of the OpTra National de Lyon bring their own pleasures with flute, harp and clarinet solos beautifully enhancing diaphanous textures.

Gramophone Magazine, November 2014
Warm tone, perfect control, a deeply sympathetic portrayal [of Maria Stuarda]. The finale of Zelmira provides DiDonato with the opportunity of showing off her brilliantly executed coloratura, while her mezza voce at the start of Romeo's farewell to the supposedly dead Juliet in Bellini's opera is sustained to perfection.

Daily Telegraph, 18th October 2014
DiDonato seems to have brought the performance and interpretation of the Italian bel canto repertoire to new heights, combining absolute technical security, intense but unmannered musicality, a beguiling range of colour and bell-like clarity of tone at a pitch of artistry that not even her nearest rival, Cecilia Bartoli, can match...This must surely rank as one of the greatest vocal recitals in recorded history.

BBC Music Magazine, December 2014
Everyone who cares about singing should promote it immediately to the top of their letters to Santa. Creamy, sumptuous, almost flawless - every adjective may be a clichT, but how else to describe singing of this quality?

Opera Now
The highlight, on many levels, is Mary's prayer from Maria Stuarda - both in musical and performance terms, because here she is really inside the music in a role she knows backwards, and it shows in the freedom, character and control: she knows where she's going.

Following the success of her crowd-sourced 'Best Of' collection "reJoyce" and her electrifying Drama Queens album of Baroque arias, Joyce DiDonato returns to her heartland repertoire to celebrate the birth of Bel Canto opera in 19th-century Naples. On Stella di Napoli (Star of Naples), the American mezzo-soprano's creamy tone and dramatic prowess breathe new life into little-known arias by Mercadante, Michele Carafa (a student of Cherubini and close friend of Rossini), Carlo Valentini and the prolific opera composer Giovanni Pacini, whose Stella di Napoli (1845) gives the album its title. Joyce worked closely with Italian conductor Riccardo Minasi (whose previous projects include Bellini's Norma with Cecilia Bartoli) to bring three unjustly neglected arias to light in new editions and world premiere recordings. Alongside these little-known gems, Joyce presents a sumptuous Bel Canto banquet with music by the three greats - Bellini, Rossini and Donizetti - including the latter's Maria Stuarda: a tour-de-force signature role for Joyce, recently screened in cinemas and released on DVD from the New York Metropolitan Opera. Joyce DiDonato won a 2013 Grammy for her last Bel Canto album "Diva, Divo," declared "an ideal vehicle for her glorious mezzo voice in which the most fiendish coloratura ornaments and trills sound effortless". (The Observer)

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Opéra de Lyon (10/17/2013-10/24/2013).



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Works Details

>Pacini, Giovanni : Stella di Napoli :: Stella Ove t'aggiri, o barbaro
  • Performers: Joyce DiDonato (Mezzo Soprano); Heloise Mas
  • Conductor: Riccardo Minasi
  • Ensemble: Orchestre de l'Opera National de Lyon
  • Notes: Opéra de Lyon (10/17/2013-10/24/2013)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 29 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic

>Bellini, Vincenzo : Adelson e Salvini (second version) :: Dopo l'oscuro nembo
  • Performer: Joyce DiDonato (Mezzo Soprano)
  • Conductor: Riccardo Minasi
  • Notes: Opéra de Lyon (10/17/2013-10/24/2013)
  • Running Time: 6 min. 25 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1825

>Carafa, Michelle : Le nozze di Lammermoor :: L'amica ancor non torna ... O di sorte crudel
  • Performers: Jean-Michel Bertelli (Clarinet); Joyce DiDonato (Mezzo Soprano)
  • Conductor: Riccardo Minasi
  • Notes: Opéra de Lyon (10/17/2013-10/24/2013)
  • Running Time: 9 min. 20 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1829

>Rossini, Gioachino : Zelmira, opera :: Riedi al soglio
  • Performers: Joyce DiDonato (Mezzo Soprano); Remi Mathieu; Nabil Suliman
  • Conductor: Riccardo Minasi
  • Notes: Opéra de Lyon (10/17/2013-10/24/2013)
  • Running Time: 8 min. 13 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1822

>Mercadante, Saverio : La vestale :: Se fino al cielo ascendere
  • Performer: Joyce DiDonato (Mezzo Soprano)
  • Conductor: Riccardo Minasi
  • Notes: Opéra de Lyon (10/17/2013-10/24/2013)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 23 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1840

>Donizetti, Gaetano : Elisabetta al castello di Kenilworth :: Par che mi dica ancora
  • Performers: Joyce DiDonato (Mezzo Soprano); Morgane Fauchois (Glockenspiel)
  • Conductor: Riccardo Minasi
  • Notes: Opéra de Lyon (10/17/2013-10/24/2013)
  • Running Time: 7 min. 33 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1829

>Bellini, Vincenzo : I Capuleti e Montecchi, opera :: Tu sola, o mia Giulietta ... Deh! tu, bell'anima
  • Performer: Joyce DiDonato (Mezzo Soprano)
  • Conductor: Riccardo Minasi
  • Notes: Opéra de Lyon (10/17/2013-10/24/2013)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 7 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1830

>Valentini, Carlo : Il sonnambulo :: Lasciami ... Se il mar sommesso mormora
  • Performers: Joyce DiDonato (Mezzo Soprano); Heloise Mas
  • Conductor: Riccardo Minasi
  • Notes: Opéra de Lyon (10/17/2013-10/24/2013)
  • Running Time: 5 min. 9 sec.
  • Period Time: Baroque
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1834

>Donizetti, Gaetano : Maria Stuarda :: Io vi rivedo alfin ... Deh! Tu di un'umile preghiera
  • Performer: Joyce DiDonato (Mezzo Soprano)
  • Conductor: Riccardo Minasi
  • Notes: Opéra de Lyon (10/17/2013-10/24/2013)
  • Running Time: 8 min. 4 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1834

>Pacini, Giovanni : Saffo :: Gran scena finale. Flutto che muggi ... Teco dall'are pronube ... L'ama ognor qual io l'
  • Performers: Joyce DiDonato (Mezzo Soprano); Heloise Mas; Remi Mathieu; Nabil Suliman
  • Conductor: Riccardo Minasi
  • Notes: Opéra de Lyon (10/17/2013-10/24/2013)
  • Running Time: 14 min. 27 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1840