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Another Verdi album, this time courtesy of Joseph Calleja. And arguably another fine vocal instrument pushed beyond its natural capacity. Whilst it is attractive to hear the phrases of Celeste Aida spun so dreamily, it is also alarming to hear the tuneless shriek at ‘ergerti un trono’ that leads to the final bars. Surely it could have been re-recorded. Likewise, his Trovatore cabaletta is overly pushed. Curiously, it’s in the selections from Otello that Calleja sounds most comfortable. Just when one would expect the voice to sink beneath the orchestral waves he provides precisely the refinement required, sings within his means and reminds us that not the entire role requires powerhouse bellowing. Ramón Tebar’s conducting is judicious and attentive.

Francis Muzzu Read the full review on Agora Classica

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