Renée Fleming - Kudos

Four Last Songs, Royal Festival Hall, December 2011

The Financial Times | December 16, 2011

[Fleming’s singing] floats on ... an effortless stream of warm and beautiful tone. Fleming was made for these Strauss songs, and they for her. In this performance the music was presented as high German romanticism. The conductor was Christoph Eschenbach, with whom Fleming has often sung (and recorded) the songs. He favours a very full texture from the orchestra, so it is fortunate that Fleming’s voice has more richness lower down than some others of its kind, and Strauss’s accompaniments surged in waves of sound. Like a Wagnerian threnody, the last song faded away slowly and grandly, as if looking out over a majestic landscape of autumnal bronze and deep red. For an encore, Fleming and Eschenbach offered Strauss’s “Waldseligkeit” – more quietly rapturous singing, more lush, woodland poetry from the orchestra.

-Richard Fairman

 

The Independent | December 15, 2011

No one makes an entrance or wears a frock quite like Fleming: she is in every sense a star turn - and if you've got it (and she has, in spades), flaunt it, I say. She certainly flaunted the Strauss.

-Edward Seckerson

Love Letters with Alec Baldwin, Carnegie Hall, November 2011

The Huffington Post | December 14, 2011

Sometimes theater thrives on the simplest pleasures. A couple actors on a bare stage. This was the case at the last event for Carnegie Hall's young donor group, the Notables. Of course, it helps when those two actors are Alec Baldwin and Renee Fleming who both exude an effortless charm (even when they're on book) that buoys A.R. Gurney's charming play of a lifelong friendship told through a series of letters. It's refreshingly old-fashioned, and perfectly suited to a reading.

-Chris Kompanek

Rodelinda, Metropolitan Opera, November 2011

The New York Times | November 15, 2011

Bringing Back the Baroque in a Revival Tailored to the Met

The Metropolitan Opera's production of Handel's "Rodelinda," created in 2004 as a showcase for the soprano Renée Fleming, went a long way toward establishing Baroque opera — and with it, elements of period performance practice — as something more than a novelty item at the house.

In addition to Ms. Fleming's star power, Stephen Wadsworth’s direction has received much credit for the production’s initial success and durability.

Who can ignore Ms. Fleming even when she is marking time?... She threw herself and her voice wholeheartedly into the considerable drama.

-James R. Oestreich

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