Cecilia Bartoli, © DECCA/Uli Weber Editor's Desk / Editor’s Choice

This season, catch some of the greatest singers of our time, performing in concert or in costume on the preeminent concert and opera stages of the world’s music capitals. Here is an overview of the most exciting voices on tour in 2016-2017.

Cecilia Bartoli is not only one of the greatest voices of her generation. She is also a scholar of the music she performs, delving deep into the musicological context to ensure interpretations that are not only beautiful, but also true to the composer’s intention. Her musical integrity is on display in two very different contexts this season. In her “Händel’s Heroines” program, Cecilia Bartoli embodies the strength of the Baroque master’s most fearless female operatic roles. Composed nearly a century later, the title role in Rossini’s “La Cenerentola” has been associated with Cecilia Bartoli since she debuted the role at the Met in 1997. She sings Angelina for the last times this season, together with her period instrument ensemble, Les Musiciens de Prince.

Juan Diego Flórez made opera history at La Scala in 2007, and again at the Met the following year, reviving the practice of singing encores during staged opera productions. The Peruvian tenor’s extraordinary bel canto singing and his undeniable charm on stage make him one of the most sought-after singers today. He can be heard this season at the Deutsche Oper Berlin in David Alden’s anxiously awaited production of Meyerbeer’s “Les Huguenots”. Later in the season, revel in the full spectrum of Juan Diego Flórez’ vocal timbres and musical interests, when he performs in recital in Paris and Barcelona.

Joyce DiDonato is the vocal heroine of the United States today. Her charismatic presence and flawless mezzo-soprano voice invariably enthrall audiences, whether she is singing Maria Stuarda at the Met, or the US national anthem at her home team’s World Series baseball game. Joyce DiDonato is touring this season with her program of both famous and lesser-know Baroque arias. Entitled “In War and Peace: Harmony Through Music”, the collaboration with ensemble Il Pomo d’Oro is based on the belief in music as a source of harmony in times of discord.

Philippe Jaroussky has been at the forefront of the countertenor renaissance since he burst into the Baroque music scene. At the age of 30, he became the first countertenor ever to win the prestigious Echo Klassik Singer of the Year award in 2008. The young virtuoso is as much at home with the introspective sacred cantatas of Bach as he is in the coloratura flurry of Vivaldi’s opera arias. Admire Philippe Jaroussky’s stunning range and velvet sound in performances with the Freiburger Barockorchester. Later in the season, he teams up with I Barocchisti for a thematic program exploring the character of Orpheus as portrayed in music from Monteverdi to Offenbach.

Other must-hear vocal stars on stage this season include tenor Jonas Kaufmann, who sings in select dates of two opera productions at the Paris Opera. German baritone Matthias Goerne will also be heard in several performances in Paris theaters throughout the season, and he sings Mahler with the Staatskapelle Dresden in Brussels and Amsterdam next June. Come Christmas time, tenor Rolando Villazón will perform a rare recital with piano accompaniment at Paris’ Palais Garnier, and he will be back in Paris in 2017, singing Ulysses to Magdalena Kožená’s Penelope at Théâtre des Champs-Elysées.

 

 
Credits:Cecilia Bartoli, © DECCA/Uli Weber

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