The Golden Voice

The Golden Voice

by Joseph Calleja


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The Golden Voice

There are tenor arias that convey heroism and raw passion, and there are others that tell of more subtle feelings, often the sensitivity of a young man awestruck by love. For the latter type, Joseph Calleja is the tenor you want. Decca was wise to sign this promising Malta native at the tender age of 25, for on this recital album, his second, Calleja leaves no doubt that his sweet, supple voice is one of the most distinctive in opera today. With his slightly quavering vibrato and the pathos of his diminuendos into soft dynamics, Calleja often projects a sense of emotional vulnerability, especially in his top range. And since the bel canto arias of Bellini and Donizetti -- which fill half the recital -- are like a magnifying glass on the voice, every nuance of Calleja's long, sustained vocal lines is exposed to our scrutiny, proving the strength of his technique. Bellini also provides the album's highlight: a duet from La Sonnambula with soprano Anna Netrebko. Calleja's voice doesn't have the intrinsic glamour of Netrebko's, but he's at his best when reacting to a partner, and the two singers are expressively in sync throughout the long duet. His other finest moments, however, occur in the set of French arias at the recital's center; it's the idealistically romantic youths of Massenet and Gounod who bring out the singer's richest interpretations, though we could use a few more zestfully humorous numbers along the lines of Offenbach's "Au Mont Ida." It's going to be exciting to watch Calleja expand his dramatic range in the years to come, but this Golden Voice already offers plenty to treasure.

Product Details

Release Date: 04/11/2006
Label: Decca
UPC: 0028947569312
catalogNumber: 000541702
Rank: 144605


  1. I Lombardi alla prima Crociata, opera: La mia letizia infondere vorrei
  2. La favorita, opera: Favoria del re!... Spirto gentil
  3. L'elisir d'amore, opera: Una furtiva lagrima
  4. La sonnambula, opera: Elvino! E me tu lasci... Son geloso del zefiro err
  5. Roméo et Juliette, opera: L'amour, l'amour... Ah! lève-toi, soleil!
  6. Manon, comic opera in 5 acts: Instant charmant... En fermant les yeux
  7. La belle Hélène, operetta in 3 acts: Au mont Ida (Le Jugement de Pâris)
  8. Werther, lyric drama in 4 acts: Pouquoi me réveiller
  9. Les Pêcheurs de perles, opera in 3 acts: Je crois entendre encore
  10. Si j'étais roi, opera: Elle est princesse!
  11. Le duc d'Albe (Il duca d'Alba), opera: Innosservato, penetrava in questo sacro recesso...
  12. Dom Sébastien, roi du Portugal, opera: Deserto in terra
  13. I Puritani, opera: Son già lontani
  14. Maristella, opera: Io conosco un giardino

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