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Italian opera arias.

ITALIAN OPERA ARIAS

Rolando Villazon

Virgin Classics: 7243 5 45626 2 4 (1 CD)

I first encountered the young Mexican tenor, Rolando Villazon, in 2001 singing the role of Rodolfo in the New York City Opera's then-new production of Puccini's La boheme. Collectively, the cast was outstanding--young, fresh-voiced and irrepressible--but it was Villazon who stood out from the crowd. Now, with this stylish new recital disc as his calling card, the world will be able to hear what all the fuss is about. At the moment, Villazon (born in 1972) is a cross between a tenore di grazia (listen to the elegance of Nemorino's arias from L'elisir d'amore) and a tenore spinto (listen to the strength and passion in the Puccini and Mascagni arias). And although he can, on occasion, sound uncannily like a young Domingo, Villazon is blessed with his own unique sound, style and musical personality. This is exemplary singing. In addition to many of the standard tenor hits, this splendid disc also offers a few rarities, such as the ecstatic hymn to love, "Quando al soave anelito," from Mascagni's Nerone.

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Author:Crory, Neil
Publication:Opera Canada
Date:Dec 15, 2004
Words:185
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