Friday, October 12, 2012

Gratuitous Friday – Joyce DiDonato Sings Bach

Joyce DiDonato is way too busy and way too famous to be playing the role of Soprano II in Bach’s B-minor Mass these days. What a loss to Bach and the world of choral music! Her 2006 performance from Notre Dame in Paris gives us yet another reason to love her.

Bach: Mass in B minor – Laudamus Te 

Ms. DiDonato lives and breathes the joy in this song of praise to God: “We praise you, we bless you, we glorify you, we adore you.” Note too, the way she interacts with the solo violinist—not an accompanist, but a partner. 


  1. How wonderful it is when optimum vocal intelligence is wedded to optimum vocal beauty. DiDonato is one of the peerless singers with us today and for that we should rejoice. When Schwarzkopf recorded this with von Karajan (at slowers speeds if I recall) she later commented that the Laudamus Te should be sung by a lower voice and was puzzled as to why she was chosen to sing it. Legge or von Karajan? At any rate the lady knew whereof she spokel

  2. Yup, a half step lower and quite a few ticks slower back in Schwarzkopf's heyday. When organizations economize and only get one soprano for the B-Minor Mass, there is always that question about who sings the Soprano II solos. Five soloists is always best, and I have even heard performances with both a baritone and a bass, since their (his) two solos each have a very different tessitura. I still love to hear those old Karajan and Klemperer (etc.) Bach recordings now and then.


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