LSM Newswire

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Jonas Kaufmann sings great German arias on two new releases available April 6th, 2010

Opera Arias by
Mozart, Schubert, Beethoven, Wagner
Mahler Chamber Orchestra/Claudio Abbado
Die Schöne Müllerin with pianist Helmut Deutsch

“He has burst upon the international scene as a fully mature, major artist. And "artist" with Kaufmann means the full deal.” Gramophone

“It’s Kaufmann’s gift that his immensely seductive and secure voice can encompass nearly anything the tenor repertoire throws at him.” The Times of London on
Romantic Arias

NEW YORK, NY – February 2010 – Jonas Kaufmann is now established as one of the most successful and versatile tenor of his generation, attracting rave reviews for his live performances and recordings. With a velvety rich and dark, almost baritonal timbre unique among tenors performing today, Jonas Kaufmann lends an exquisite sound and unique artistic outlook to a wide variety of repertoire.

Following the international success of Romantic Arias, Jonas Kaufmann returns with two new albums available on Decca on April 6th, 2010. These recordings are released simultaneously just as Kaufmann arrives in the Unites States to perform the role of Cavarodossi in Puccini’s Tosca at New York’s  Metropolitan Opera (April 14th-24th).

One album features outstanding German tenor arias from the great operas of Wagner, as well as the challenging leading role of Beethoven's only opera Fidelio, favorite arias by Mozart, and rarely heard opera arias by Schubert.  Jonas Kaufmann has already sung most of these roles on the world's great opera stages.  Claudio Abbado directs the Mahler Chamber Orchestra in his first ever vocal recital recording for Decca, and his first Decca recording for almost 40 years.

This album was released in Europe to coincide with his role debut as Wagner's Lohengrin in a new production at the Munich Festival last summer. “Quite simply,” Opera News wrote of that performance, “tenor Jonas Kaufmann sang a Lohengrin for the ages. Not one minute of his performance was less than extraordinary.”
The album cover shows Jonas Kaufmann as Wanderer - inspired by the much-loved painting by German Romantic artist Caspar David Friedrich.

Tracklisting for Opera Arias
RICHARD WAGNER (1813–1883) In fernem Land ... bin Lohengrin genannt (Lohengrin); Mein lieber Schwan ... Leb wohl! (Lohengrin)
WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART (1756–1991) Dies Bildnis ist bezaubernd schön ... Ware sie dann mein (Die Zauberflöte); Die Weisheitslehre ... führt mich der Ton zu ihr (Die Zauberflöte)
FRANZ SCHUBERT (1797–1828) Was quälst du mich ... In tiefbewegter Brust (Fierrabras); Schon, wenn es beginnt zu tragen ... und mein Herze will ihm nach (Alfonso und Estrella)
LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN (1770–1827) Gott, Welch Dunkel ... In des lebens Frühlingstagen (Fidelio)
RICHARD WAGNER Wintererstürme wichen dem Wonnemond (Die Walküre); Amfortas! Die Wunde! ... Ewig von mir (Parsifal); Nur eine Waffe taugt ... (Parsifal)


SCHUBERT: Die Schöne Mullerin
Jonas Kaufmann with Helmut Deutsch, piano

Also in stores on April 6th is Jonas Kaufmann’s interpretation of Schubert’s devastating song cycle Die schöne Müllerin.  This is a work Kaufmann wanted to record before he got much older (he recently turned 40) as the piece, he says, “calls for a young voice as well as a young soul. It is about a young man who goes out into the world bright and happy and utterly carefree — and then his life is completely shattered. His ill-fated love for the miller’s daughter is his first painful experience. And for this ‘innocence’ to be reasonably believable, the interpreter should not sound overly mature.”

“For me, the first songs are purest expressions of joie de vivre,” Kaufmann goes on to say, “and that’s how they should be presented. The fellow who sets off on his wanderings is bursting with energy and self-confidence. The better you convey this mood, the greater the build-up of tension, the harder the fall.”

As with the best of German Lieder, Die schöne Müllerin is not music for the singer only but an equal duet between pianist and voice.  Helmut Deutsch, a renowned collaborative pianist, brings his intelligence and sensitive artistry to bear in these heart-rending performances.

For more information on Jonas Kaufmann’s Opera Arias and Die schöne Müllerin recordings, including exclusive videos and interviews with the artists, please visit www.jonas-kaufmann.com.

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