Scene d’amore = TCHAIKOVSKY: Puskay pogibnu ya (Eugene Onegin); BIZET: Je dis, que rien ne m’epouvante (Carmen); GOUNOD: Je voudrais bien savoir (Faust); PUCCINI: 2 arias; VERDI: 2 arias – Soile Isokoski, sop. – Ondine

by | Jan 3, 2009 | Classical CD Reviews | 0 comments

Scene d’amore = TCHAIKOVSKY: Puskay pogibnu ya (Eugene Onegin); BIZET: Je dis, que rien ne m’epouvante (Carmen); GOUNOD: Je voudrais bien savoir (Faust); PUCCINI: Si. Mi chiamano Mimi (La Boheme); Tu che di gel sei cinta (Turandot); VERDI: Come in quest’ ora bruna (Simon Boccanegra); Emila, ten e prego (Otello) – Soile Isokoski, soprano/ Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra/ Mikko Franck, conductor – Ondine ODE 1126, 57:15 *** [Distr. by Universal]:

This is your typical collection of arias designed to showcase a house singer, no different than we have seen thousands of times before. Soile Isokoski made somewhat of a splash with her Strauss Four Last Songs a few years ago, and more recently, her Sibelius Luonnotar Songs have been well received.

I wanted to like this album more than I did. The singing is fresh, technically on mark, and solid as an oak. But neither she nor the orchestra seems very involved with the music. There is not one spot on this nicely-varied recital that I can point to with any degree of enthusiasm as offering illuminating or particularly emotional content. It simply seems a run-through, flat and monochromatic, with no depth of vocal imaging or expressive nuances. The voice remains pure and unaffected—one of the most clearly enunciated expressions on the market today—but without any sense of connection to the characters or scenarios involved in each piece. The Tchaikovsky and Gounod pieces probably fare the best, Puccini suffering the worst. Sound is clean and clear, but not very broad.

So this one is a little bit of a dud. This in no way is a slight on this wonderful singer, as she has proved herself before and no doubt will do so again in the future. It just goes to show that even the best have their off days.

— Steven Ritter

Related Reviews