Album Remarks & Appraisals:
"The true salvation is the human voice." When these words are sung by Sting on the title track of Welcome to the Voice, we are persuaded to believe in the strength of human desire. The singer-together with opera stars Barbara Bonney, Amanda Roocroft, Sara Fulgoni, and Nathalie Manfrino, as well as his rock comrades Elvis Costello and Robert Wyatt- is celebrating the voice's sensory, even extra-sensory power, in this modern work that aims to unite the black and white precision of classical writing with the color of chance and "happy accidents" associated with improvised music.
An unlikely encounter of a unique project with an all-star cast! Steve Nieve, Elvis Costello's long-time pianist and music director, and Nieve's partner Muriel Teodori, a film/theatre director, began working on Welcome To The Voice ten years ago. She wrote the libretto, he composed the music, and together they developed and shaped the project that is an opera in homage to the human voice. It is a very accessible opera on one CD - one that will interest both the pop and the classical consumer. Welcome To The Voice is a multifaceted opera that welcomes voices from different musical worlds. It lives on the juxtaposition of men who have rough, untrained voices, coming from jazz or rock (Robert Wyatt, Elvis Costello, Sting), with women who have classically trained voices (Barbara Bonney, Amanda Roocroft, Nathalie Manfrino, Sara Fulgoni). The score has been composed for the Brodsky Quartet while Marc Ribot, Ned Rothenberg, and Steve Nieve himself improvise with a jazz feeling. Apart from the music itself, the beauty of this project lies in the profound idealistic - even romantic - themes that transcend all levels of the work. The catchphrase is: 'unlikely encounter'. Seemingly opposing music genres, classes, artists, languages, and codes are unified in the name of love and art. It's no wonder that the project has attracted all the high-profile artists that collaborate in the opera and contribute to the uniqueness of this work.
Personnel: Sting (vocals, electric bass); Nathalie Manfrino, Sarah Fulgoni, Amanda Roocroft, Robert Wyatt, Barbara Bonney , Elvis Costello (vocals); Marc Ribot (guitar); Ian Belton, Andrew Haveron (violin); Paul Cassidy (viola); Jacqueline Thomas (cello); Ned Rothenberg (bass flute, shakuhachi, clarinet, saxophone); Steve Nieve (piano, Moog synthesizer, Theremin); Antoine Quessada (cymbals).
Liner Note Authors: Muriel Teodori; Michael Lang ; Steve Nieve.
Recording information: Air Studios, London, England; Avatar Studios, New York, NY; EMI Abbey Road Studios, London, England; Home Of Guillaume Sciama; Il Palagio, Italy; Phil Manzanera's Gallery Studios.
Librettist: Muriel Teodori.
Photographers: Muriel Teodori; Mark Seliger; Mark Seigler; Carole Bellaïche; Paolo Riversi; James McMillan .
Translator: Muriel Teodori.
Arranger: Steve Nieve.
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