Home  |  Audio Reviews  Audiophile Shows Partner Mags  News     

Enjoy the Music.com Review Magazine
Arias and sacred songs by Handel, Giacomelli, Vivaldi, Caldara, Vinci, Mozart, Bellini, Mendelssohn, Persiani, Rossini, Mascagni, Bach, Gounod, Dufruflé, Franck and Fauré
Cecilia Bartoli, mezzo-soprano, various conductors and orchestras
Review By Joe Milicia


  Fans of Cecilia Bartoli might like to have "Deluxe Edition" of Sospiri — but they should be aware that this two-CD set, with its hardcover format and goofy photos of the mezzo-soprano diva posing with cascades of soap bubbles, is a compilation of previous Decca releases. Following the common practice of pop/rock releases, the album includes two first-time-ever cuts to tempt the completists: a world premiere recording of an aria from a baroque opera called Medo, thought to be by one Leonardo Vinci, and the very familiar Una voce pocofa from The Barber of Seville, evidently recorded for Bartoli's Maria CD but not released then (likely because the latter CD already has nearly 80 minutes of music).

As an introduction to Bartoli's art, Sospiri has one drawback: in keeping with the title, which means "sighs," the great majority of the numbers are — I hesitate to say mopey or droopy but—languid, sorrowful, somber. The original albums naturally provide more contrasts aria by aria. But there is much to be relished here — indeed, nearly everything is — from the most obscure baroque numbers to freshly approached staples of the repertoire, like the mezzo version of Casta diva from Norma and Bartoli's take on saucy Rosina's aria from The Barber. Listeners can decide for themselves whether or not Bartoli's rendering of some of the sacred songs are a little too "artful," as opposed to a pure (i.e., seemingly spontaneous) outpouring of sound.

Recording times on the two CD's are a bit lopsided, with about 78 minutes on the secular arias disc and 30 minutes for the sacred numbers. One extra attraction of the secular disc is the appearance of "guest stars" for duets (another parallel to pop CDs): Bryn Terfel as Don Giovanni for Là ci darem la mano, Jean Diego Flórez for music from La Sonnambula, and Luciano Pavarotti from a 1997 recording of the Cherry Duet from L'Amico Fritz.

The sound is consistently good over the course of about 16 years' worth of recordings, featuring six orchestras led by seven conductors. Bartoli's luscious tones are captured especially well on the more recent cuts, and orchestral detail is almost always clear and in good balance with the soloist.




Sound Quality:













































Quick Links

Audiophile Review Magazine
High-End Audio Equipment Reviews


Equipment Review Archives
Turntables, Cartridges, Etc
Digital Source
Do It Yourself (DIY)
Cables, Wires, Etc
Loudspeakers/ Monitors
Headphones, IEMs, Tweaks, Etc
Ultra High-End Audio Reviews


Enjoy the Music.TV


Editorials By Tom Lyle
Viewpoint By Roger Skoff
Viewpoint By Steven R. Rochlin
Various Think Pieces
Manufacturer Articles

Show Reports
Pacific Audio Fest 2022 Report
T.H.E. Show 2022 Report
HIGH END Munich 2022
AXPONA 2022 Show Report
CanJam Singapore 2022 Report
Salon Audio Montréal Audiofest 2022
Florida Audio Expo 2022
AudioCon Los Angeles 2022
Capital Audiofest 2021 Show
The HiFi Summit Q2 2021
T.H.E. Show 2021 Report
The HiFi Summit Q4 2020
The HiFi Summit Q2 2020
Bristol Hi-Fi Show Report 2020
Click here for previous shows.


Audiophile Contests
Cool Free Stuff For You
Tweaks For Your System
Vinyl Logos For LP Lovers
Lust Pages Visual Beauty


Resources & Information
Music Definitions
Hi-Fi Definitions


Daily Industry News

High-End Audio News & Information


Partner Print Magazines
Australian Hi-Fi Magazine
hi-fi+ Magazine
HiFi Media
Hi-Fi World
Sound Practices
The Absolute Sound
VALVE Magazine


For The Press & Industry
About Us
Press Releases
Official Site Graphics


Contests & Our Mailing List

Our free newsletter for monthly updates & enter our contests!




Home   |   Industry News   |   Equipment Reviews   |   Press Releases   |   About Us   |   Contact Us


All contents copyright©  1995 - 2022  HighEndAudio.com and Enjoy the Music.com®
May not be copied or reproduced without permission.  All rights reserved.