Maria was a landmark recording in homage to the legendary 19th century diva Maria Malibran. The recording immediately shot to #1 on the Billboard classical chart upon release and was featured in the New York Times and on National Public Radio while being resoundingly praised by critics worldwide. It was honored with two GRAMMY nominations this year: for both Best Classical Album and Best Classical Vocal Performance.
Maria Double DVD
Bartoli continues her tribute to Maria Malibran with a double DVD to be released on Decca on Feb. 10. The first DVD features the Barcelona concert from the ongoing Maria album tour "La Rivoluzione Romantica". The 80 minute program, recorded during a live performance in the Palau de la Musica Catalana, features selections from the Maria album, but also contains tracks not available elsewhere, including the soprano's heartbreaking rendering of Rossini's "Willow Song" as a DVD exclusive.
The second DVD features a scintillating 70 minute film Malibran Rediscovered, which follows Bartoli as she researches the life of Maria Malibran and records the album.
These releases will be supported by a tour which debuts stateside on Feb. 17th and includes dates in Southern California, Santa Barbara, San Francisco, Vancouver, Toronto and New York.
La Sonnambula Album
On Feb. 24th Decca releases a major new studio recording of Bellini's Romantic masterpiece La Sonnambula with Cecilia Bartoli and Juan Diego Fl‹rez.
The two leading bel canto superstars of today, Cecilia Bartoli and Juan Diego Fl‹rez join forces for the first time in what will be the most complete and authentic recording of Bellini's La sonnambula - an eagerly awaited moment in the operatic world and a must have item for all fans of Bartoli and Fl‹rez. This "must-have" (Sunday Times) recording is Bartoli's first complete studio opera recording in nine years. This is also the first ever recording of the work with a mezzo-soprano in the lead role, and the first with a period instrument orchestra.
Many of the cadenzas sung by Cecilia Bartoli are those used by Maria Malibran, whose interpretation of the role of Amina was considered one of her signatures during her lifetime. Fl‹rez whom the Sunday Times calls, "an Elvino of equal vocal allure and Italianate ardour" tackles the fearsomely difficult role with both supreme elegance and masculine power. This recording has been called a "landmark" by the Financial Times and was just named Gramophone Magazine's Editor Choice in their February 2009 issue. The recording is beautifully packaged in a CD-sized hard-bound book that includes the complete recording, numerous full color photographs, essays on the opera and a complete libretto with translation.
Cecilia Bartoli North American Maria Tourdates
February 17- Orange County
February 19- Santa Barbara
February 22- Berkeley
February 25- Vancouver
March 1- Toronto
March 3- New York, Carnegie Hall
For further information, visit Cecilia Bartoli Online.