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Italian Love Songs
Various composers

Anna Leese

Italian Love Songs

Price: € 19.95 13.97
Format: CD
Label: Champs Hill
UPC: 5060212590510
Catnr: CHRCD 050
Release date: 28 January 2013
old €19.95 new € 13.97
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19.95 13.97
old €19.95 new € 13.97
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Label
Champs Hill
UPC
5060212590510
Catalogue number
CHRCD 050
Release date
28 January 2013
Album
Artist(s)
Composer(s)
EN

About the album

Anna Leese and Stephen de Pledge perform Italian Love Songs by Bellini, Puccini, Donizetti and Tosti. These elegant pieces for solo voice, some well known, others less so, connect directly with a rich and substantial body of Italian art songs, romanze and liriche da camera, composed over the course of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

Artist(s)

Anna Leese (vocals)

New Zealand Soprano Anna Leese is a graduate of the University of Otago, the Royal College of Music and the Benjamin Britten International Opera School. Her many awards include the 2005 Richard Tauber Prize. Recent concert engagements have included Mahler’s second symphony with Bernard Haitink, Vaughan Williams’s Sea Symphony with the Malaysian Philharmonic, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 in Madrid with Carlo Rizzi, and Elijah with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, conducted by Thierry Fischer. She made her debut at the 2006 BBC Proms with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Sir Roger Norrington, and has appeared in a number of opera gala concerts with José Carreras. Her recordings include a debut recital disc for EMI with Graham Johnson, and a Haydn...
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New Zealand Soprano Anna Leese is a graduate of the University of Otago, the Royal College of Music and the Benjamin Britten International Opera School. Her many awards include the 2005 Richard Tauber Prize. Recent concert engagements have included Mahler’s second symphony with Bernard Haitink, Vaughan Williams’s Sea Symphony with the Malaysian Philharmonic, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 in Madrid with Carlo Rizzi, and Elijah with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, conducted by Thierry Fischer. She made her debut at the 2006 BBC Proms with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Sir Roger Norrington, and has appeared in a number of opera gala concerts with José Carreras. Her recordings include a debut recital disc for EMI with Graham Johnson, and a Haydn disc on the Michael Storrs Music label. Anna Leese made her Covent Garden debut as Tamiri (Il re pastore), returning for Musetta (La bohème), Micaela (Carmen), First Lady (Die Zauberflöte) and Echo (Ariadne). For the New Zealand Opera she has sung Ilia in Mozart’s Idomeneo, Cleopatra in Giulio Cesare and Tatyana in Eugene Onegin. She has sung Biancofiore in Francesca da Rimini and Suzel in L’amico Fritz for Opera Holland Park, Antonia in Hoffmann for the Cologne Opera and Tatyana for the Flanders Opera, and she made her North American debut with the Canadian Opera Company as Musetta. Anna Leese is an Associate Artist of the Classical Opera Company. Other engagements include Leila in Pearlfishers for Opera Holland Park, Majenka (The Bartered Bride) and Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni) for the New Zealand Opera, and concerts with the Auckland Philharmonic Orchestra and City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra.
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Composer(s)

Gaetano Donizetti

Gaetano Donizetti was born in 1797 in a dark basement in Bergamo. He was born in a poor family with six children, but Donizetti was lucky enough to receive a free musical education at the school of the opera composer Simone Mayr. Mayr recognised Donizetti's talent and after giving him composition lessons he ensured he could continue his studies in Bologna. He also helped him get his first opera commission. Donizetti kept working hard and for a considerable period he composed four operas each year. A large part of his career, he worked in Naples, which could be a reason why his artistic style remained relatively conventional. After all, the opera audience in Naples had a conservative taste and censorship...
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Gaetano Donizetti was born in 1797 in a dark basement in Bergamo. He was born in a poor family with six children, but Donizetti was lucky enough to receive a free musical education at the school of the opera composer Simone Mayr. Mayr recognised Donizetti's talent and after giving him composition lessons he ensured he could continue his studies in Bologna. He also helped him get his first opera commission. Donizetti kept working hard and for a considerable period he composed four operas each year. A large part of his career, he worked in Naples, which could be a reason why his artistic style remained relatively conventional. After all, the opera audience in Naples had a conservative taste and censorship was extraordinarily strict: absolutely no violence or 'improper' romantic relationships on stage! Donizetti had the gift to compose remarkably fast and wrote in total more than 80 operas, both serious and comic. His operas L'Elisir d'Amore and Don Pasquale remain popular due to their cheerful and energetic music, uplifting rhythms, and tender melodies. Among his serious operas, his Lucia di Lammermoor, with its famous "mad scene" is most popular. Donizetti died in 1848 in Bergamo, after staying in a medical facility in Paris for months, suffering from dementia and paralysed by syphilis. A tragic death for a composer who was also known for his warm personality.


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Giacomo Puccini

The Italian opera composer Giacomo Puccini is viewed as the most important succesor of Giuseppe Verdi. Puccini was a true theatre man, who knew how to combine words, gesture and music seamlessly to emotionally touch the audience. Puccini's creative process was a tormented him. Often, librettists had to swallow a lot before he was satisfied with the text. Because of this, he only composed relatively few operas, but among those are some real masterworks. In his opera Tosca, Puccini knows how to keep the audience on the edge of their seats, and in his operas La Bohème and Madame Butterfly, it is hard not to weep in the end. Moreover, Puccini was able to compose arias which Verdi would have called 'something for the organ...
more
The Italian opera composer Giacomo Puccini is viewed as the most important succesor of Giuseppe Verdi. Puccini was a true theatre man, who knew how to combine words, gesture and music seamlessly to emotionally touch the audience. Puccini's creative process was a tormented him. Often, librettists had to swallow a lot before he was satisfied with the text. Because of this, he only composed relatively few operas, but among those are some real masterworks. In his opera Tosca, Puccini knows how to keep the audience on the edge of their seats, and in his operas La Bohème and Madame Butterfly, it is hard not to weep in the end.
Moreover, Puccini was able to compose arias which Verdi would have called "something for the organ grinder": melodies which linger in your head and people sing in the streets. This was proven once again by his famous "Nessun Dorma", which was used for the world championship football, and his "O Mio Babbino Caro" which was used in a well-known commercial. Due to his popularity and commercial success, critics did not acknowledge his talents for a long time. They accused him of a sensationalist approach. His reputation as a lover of women and fast cars certainly didn't help with his image either!
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