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Classical - Released March 1, 1998 | Warner Classics

Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
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Classical - Released October 26, 2018 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet
Puccini love duets galore! That’s what the Polish soprano Aleksandra Kurzak and the tenor Roberto Alagna offer up here. Both are regulars on the world's greatest stages and their voices seem to have been tailor-made for this repertoire. The heroines - Mimì, Minnie, Tosca, Giorgetta, Butterfly and Manon - represent the absolute woman with a femininity that fascinates the composer, attracting him, inspiring him and making him fall in love. The male characters are undoubtedly a reflection of his own personality. Rodolfo, Mario and Calaf too, who is so besotted with Turandot that he risks his life for her: man, lover, seducer, villain, deceiver, poet, artist, knight or traitor... No doubt Roberto Alagna sees himself in these characters as well. Their traits are similar from one opera to the next, but Puccini knew how to make each vocal idiom wonderfully unique. © SM/Qobuz
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Classical - Released October 19, 2018 | Warner Classics

Hi-Res Booklet
La Navarraise is far from Massenet’s most famous opera. But can we even count it as an opera, considering that the composer saw it as a “lyric episode” and that it lasts only three quarters of an hour? Either way, it is indeed a work of the utmost maturity. It premiered in Covent Garden (sung in French) in 1894, featuring Emma Calvé, Pol Plançon and Albert Alvarez, the stars of their time. After a triumphant success in England, as well as in many European countries, La Navarraise disappeared from posters and was almost never be seen again. Italian Verismo and naturalism seem to have worn off on Massenet, as this is by far his “noisiest” score. The arrangement is filled with loud stage effects such as clapping hands, beating drums, clicking castanets, loud trumpets, clanging bells and shots from canons, shotguns and pistols. His music sometimes feels more like sound accompaniment rather than a lyrical passage. The musical content closely follows the theatrical action, which is very martial and turbulent indeed. Some, including the critic Willy, saw it as a kind of "Cavalleria española", and quite rightly so. The gloomy action takes place in the Spanish Basque Country around the time of its creation, as Massenet mentions the Third Carlist War that took place just two decades earlier. It would be a bit like if a composer today were to create music based on the Yugoslav Wars… Alongside Roberto Alagna as the male lead, we find the Polish soprano Aleksandra Kurzak in the title role. This recording adds to the discography of the work which, although it is not Massenet's greatest masterpiece, is clearly an underrated gem. © SM/Qobuz
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Classical - Released October 28, 2016 | Universal Music Division Decca Records France

Hi-Res Booklet
You can let star tenor Roberto Alagna summarize the aims of this album himself (in brutal, unforgivable, gray-on-brown print): dedicated to his daughter Malèna, "This is doubtless the most intimate and personal album I have made." You may then wonder why Neapolitan and Sicilian songs, popular materials that aim for broad appeal rather than intimate and personal experience, would be chosen for such a project. It's true that something like Funiculì Funiculà is a bit odd in such a context, but several factors mitigate the potential contradiction. One is that several of the tracks are new, composed by Alagna's brothers Frédérico and David, with input on the title track from Roberto Alagna himself. The family's ancestry is Sicilian, but mastery of this idiom is nonetheless an impressive and, yes, personal thing. Second, the Sicilian songs as a group are not nearly as familiar, individually or in style, as the Neapolitan ones are, and especially here Alagna seems to choose songs that could be interpreted as referring to the renewing love of father for daughter. Finally, Alagna, even though he came from France, just seems to have this idiom in his bones, in a way that Jonas Kaufmann, to name another recent entrant in this repertory, does not, for all the vocal beauty on display. With sympathetic backing from a mysterious and largely uncredited London Orchestra under conductor Yvan Cassar, this is a release sure to satisfy Alagna fans and those looking for something new in the repertoire of popular Italian song.
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Classical - Released January 1, 2006 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Classical - Released November 27, 2015 | Universal Music Division Decca Records France

Booklet
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Classical - Released August 13, 1997 | Decca Music Group Ltd.

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Classical - Released January 1, 2006 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Classical - Released January 1, 2006 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Looking over a pile of recital albums by operatic tenors, a person could easily conclude that there are only a dozen or so arias out there to be sung -- over and over. Not so here. Although its title, Nessun Dorma, suggests otherwise, Roberto Alagna's latest solo album is loaded with arias that will be familiar only to those who know obscure verismo works like Umberto Giordano's La cena delle beffe or Leoncavallo's La bohème, which has been eclipsed by Puccini's opera of the same name. The result is an interesting, and mostly well sung, album that gives a number of neglected operas a moment in the sun. Curiously, the few chestnuts on the album are the least musically satisfying. Alagna sounds unsettled in the titular "Nessun dorma" and occasionally pushed beyond his vocal limits in selections from Giordano's Andrea Chénier and Mascagni's Cavalleria rusticana. The opening of "Cielo e mar!" from Ponchielli's La Gioconda even reveals an alarmingly fuzzy, rough vocal quality. But Alagna finds his stride in "Giulietta, son io" from Zandonai's Giulietto e Romeo -- managing to capture a desperate emotionalism without overstressing himself -- and in general delivers much better performances in the less familiar material. Heartfelt and exciting performances of immediately appealing selections from Leoncavallo's Zingari and Chatterton, and Ermanno Wolf-Ferrari's Sly beg the question of why these arias (maybe even the operas themselves) aren't heard more often. The upshot is that Nessun Dorma opens a window on the emotionally charged and sumptuous world of late nineteenth century Italian opera, and establishes Alagna as an interesting interpreter of that material. Throughout, Mark Elder and the Royal Opera House Orchestra Covent Garden play with color and electricity, lending weight and pathos to the entire album.
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Classical - Released January 1, 2006 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Classical - Released April 22, 2016 | Warner Classics

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Classical - Released January 1, 2006 | Deutsche Grammophon Classics

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Classical - Released January 1, 2006 | Deutsche Grammophon Classics

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Classical - Released May 16, 2011 | Warner Classics

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Classical - Released January 1, 2007 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Classical - Released January 1, 2005 | Universal Music Division Decca Records France

Sicilian-French tenor Roberto Alagna continues with his bid for superstardom, an effort that has involved performing crossover material in quantities comparable to some of his illustrious tenor ancestors. Among his strong points here, in addition to a really compelling high C that he doesn't just throw around, is that he tends to find really unusual popular material to replace the Neapolitan songs that were musical common coin in Caruso's day, or even the big pop ballads that worked in Domingo's. Here Alagna unearths the repertory of post-World War II French pop singer Luis Mariano, whose voice first made an impression on him when he was 10. For most listeners outside of France, Mariano will be little more than a name, but the songs for which he was famous work well in drawing out Alagna's playful personality and in exploiting his ability to shift vocal personalities in pop material. Various composers are represented; the most frequent is the Basque-born Francís López, whose Spanish- and Mexican-flavored French songs had the lush quality familiar to American listeners from dozens of easy listening arrangements. Alagna does well with songs like México, track 1, and he manages to bring the listener on board with his enjoyment of fluff like Noël Roux's Salade de fruits (Fruit Salad). Alagna's accented but not uncomfortable readings of two Cole Porter songs, "C'est magnifique!" and "I Love Paris," will satisfy English-speaking listeners, but the copy of the disc examined had booklet notes and song texts (except for the Porter items) in no language other than French. Even if translations had been provided they wouldn't have helped much, for the booklet design renders the text virtually unreadable. The album also stumbles with the inclusion of several duets with vocally undistinguished French pop stars and even rugged movie star Jean Reno; these break up the momentum Alagna generates. Nevertheless, the tenor takes another step with this release toward creating the sense of relaxed fun that will put him in the Three Tenors territory.
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Classical - Released January 1, 2006 | Deutsche Grammophon Classics

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Classical - Released January 1, 2006 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

This is an intact reissue of Roberto Alagna's Christmas album of 2000, complete with its original booklet notes. Those notes explain that Alagna, an professed admirer of Mario Lanza, wanted to create "an album reminiscent of some of the great 'Hollywood' recordings, with a full symphony orchestra and various groups of singers and rhythm-section musicians where appropriate." In the event, that's not quite what he came up with, but the final product has proven successful enough for a fresh go-round on store shelves and web pages. The key to his success is that a really surprising variety of material is matched by a repertoire of vocal manner that may well even appeal to operatic purists who would otherwise toss this disc. There are a few familiar hymns, several of them compressed into medleys with English children's choirs on full-bore cute setting. But there are also some genuinely unusual items. Are you familiar with the strangely melancholy minor-key Guardian Angels, co-written by none other than Harpo Marx? Alagna gives it an enthusiastically Neapolitan reading. The variety of voices Alagna adopts over the course of this album is truly impressive. He croons in White Christmas (this final track is perhaps the album's least successful). He emulates Domingo's attempts at a pop anthem on The Love of a Child. He goes into a fine traditional Italian tenor encore mode for Adeste Fideles, conveys a cheerful domesticity on Away in a Manger (his English is accented but clear and never unpleasant), and gives shining sacred consistency not only to Ave Maria but also to the Romanian carol O! Ce veste minunata!, which was suggested by Alagna's Romanian-born wife Angela Gheorghiu. On that piece he is accompanied only by a choir, but elsewhere you will hear the symphonic arrangements of conductor Robin Smith, who leads the London Symphony Orchestra. They're about halfway in between Hollywood and the soberer traditional arrangements of carols, and sometimes they seem to compete with Alagna's voice rather than complement it. Some of the choral parts were obviously dubbed in and don't quite mesh with Alagna's singing, either. The omission of texts in the booklet is a flaw -- how many of the potential buyers will understand Romanian? -- but on several pieces Alagna sings different verses in different languages. This is a pleasantly offbeat Christmas program from a singer who is looking like a strong candidate to fill the shoes of one, at least, of the Three Tenors; it's just the thing to put on the CD player when the old holiday standards begin to cloy.
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Classical - Released October 19, 2018 | Warner Classics

Booklet

Classical - Released September 28, 2018 | Warner Classics

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