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Marina Rebeka’s approach to Mozart’s great soprano arias is just ideal. She gives every phrase time and space to fulfil its emotional potential. Her effortless singing lets you sit back, forget the technical complexities and revel in radiant sound. At the same time there’s nothing complacent or facile here. Her Countess in Figaro is tinged with poignant longing; Donna Elvira’s ‘Mi tradì’ is full of internal conflict, spinning a musical thread with twists and turns that keep up a desperate momentum without sounding hectic. Fiordiligi’s ‘Come scoglio’ moves with miraculous ease from the low chest notes to the high histrionic flourishes. If there’s a single flaw, it’s that Rebeka’s voice is so inherently tender and heartbreaking that she’s an unconvincing villainess: Elettra’s summoning of the forces of hell lacks viciousness and venom; the Queen of the Night delivers all notes with pinpoint accuracy, but falls short of true rage. This is a tiny niggle in an otherwise superb recording. Rebeka is given warm, unaffected and meticulous support by the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic under the baton of Speranza Scappucci. Highly recommended.

Franz Wulf Read the full review on Agora Classica

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