Dessay And Juan

Chanson, microphones, theatre and yoga. Natalie Dessay discusses her future plans with SFist - and reveals that she hasn't closed the door on opera altogether:

"I only have Manon in Toulouse. After this, I don't know. In 2015, I am taking a sabbatical. I'm doing concerts, but I'll take a leave from the opera. After that, I don't know if I'll do it again, nor how. The last opera that I'm signed for is in October, after this I'm not signed on for anything."

"Until now, I didn't want to do recitals. But I discovered that I had things to express musically. In particular with French melodies and songs. I'll express myself this way. I'm coming next year to Cal Performances with Philippe Cassard, my pianist. I recorded the Debussy album with him. The program will be French and German. In the first part, Clara Schumann, Brahms, Fitzner [sic], Richard Strauss, then some Debussy, Faure, Duparc, Chausson, Chabrier. And in parallel, I'll do a lot of yoga and some theater, and sing some songs. For instance, I'll go on tour next year with Michel Legrand, and I'll do Michel Legrand songs. I'll sing with a mike, and not at all with my operatic voice. I like jazz a lot, but I'm not a jazz singer, alas. It's really a music I'd like to discover. And there's the French songs, Michel Legrand, Claude Nougaro, Maxime LeForestier."

DVD: Fille du Regiment with Natalie Dessay and Juan Diego Florez

La fille du regiment. Royal Opera, London 2007. Director: Laurent Pelly. Cast: Natalie Dessay, Juan Diego Florez, Felicity Palmer, Alessandro Corbelli. Conductor: Bruno Campanella. Further information here.

This is a DVD of the same La fille du regiment production shown earlier this year on the HD telecast from the Metropolitan Opera. I´ve written in details on the HD transmitted performance here, all of which (with a few exceptions) also applies to the DVD, and need no repetition.
The most notable exceptions: As the Duchess of Krakenthorp the vastly irritating Marian Seldes of the MET was replaced (or rather it was the other way around) by the much superior Dawn French. But most importantly Bruno Campanella brought much more life to the score than Armiliato did at the MET.
Furthermore, Natalie Dessay seemed in better voice, though I still have the impression she is tearing rather heavily on on her vocal reserves. Juan Diego Florez was the same. At least to a non-Florez, non-belcanto afficionado as myself..

In brief, I found this production both funny and inventive. Most, if not all of this DVD may be seen for free on YouTube.

Natalie Dessay, Chacun le sait:
The bottom line (scale of 1-5, 3=average):

Natalie Dessay: 5 (see comments)
Juan Diego Florez: 5 (see comments)
Felicity Palmer: 5
Alessandro Corbello: 5
Bruce Campanila: 4-5

Laurent Pelly´s production: 5

Overall impression: 5

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