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Battle of the Divas: The 55th Grammy Awards

Happy Grammy Sunday, opera fans!
As you may know, here in the U.S., it’s Grammy night. The Grammy’s are the equivalent of the Academy Awards for music. There are live performances, musical tributes and stars young and old making their bones in the music business, and coming to reap the rewards.

While the Grammy Award Show might not be a classical music buff’s favorite program of the year, classical music is always well represented and the awards in lower profile categories-like classical music or opera-are given at a live stream show at 3 PM NY time.

In today’s post, I’m going to focus only on the two classical solo vocal and operatic albums nominated.

Last year, Joyce DiDonato performed at the pre-show but last year as seen below.

Unfortunately, there won’t be any live classical performances this time, but we’re blessed with a ton of great albums and DVDs.

First, in the “Best Classical Vocal Solo” this year, we have a myriad of fantastic performances. At the front of the pack are Joyce DiDonato, Renee Fleming and Natalie Dessay for their respected recordings. Also nominated is Anne Sophie von Otter.

It’s going to be Battle of the Divas!

divas grammy

From the Grammy webiste, the “Best Classical Vocal Solo” nominees are:
(Click the images to order the CD)

  • Debussy: Clair De Lune

Natalie Dessay (Henri Chalet; Philippe Cassard, Karine Deshayes & Catherine Michel; Le Jeune Coeur De Paris)
Label: Virgin Classics

  • Homecoming – Kansas City Symphony Presents Joyce DiDonato

Joyce DiDonato (Michael Stern; Kansas City Symphony)

Label: Kansas City Symphony
*You may notice that Joyce DiDonato’s fantastic Drama Queens CD is not nominated. That is because it missed the submission deadline and can be considered for nomination next year.*
  • Paris Days, Berlin Nights

Ute Lemper (Stefan Malzew & Vogler Quartet)

Label: Steinway & Sons
  • Poèmes

Renée Fleming (Alan Gilbert & Seiji Ozawa; Orchestre National De France & Orchestre Philharmonique De Radio France)

Label: Decca Records
  • Sogno Barocco

Anne Sofie Von Otter (Leonardo García Alarcón; Sandrine Piau & Susanna Sundberg; Ensemble Cappella Mediterranea)

Label: Naïve Classique
Next, we have “Best Opera Recording”. Text courtesy of the Grammy website:
(Click the images to order the recording.)
  • Berg: Lulu

Michael Boder, conductor; Paul Groves, Ashley Holland, Julia Juon & Patricia Petibon; Johannes Müller, producer (Symphony Orchestra Of The Gran Teatre Del Liceu)

Label: Deutsche Grammophon
  • Handel: Agrippina

René Jacobs, conductor; Marcos Fink, Sunhae Im, Bejun Mehta, Alexandrina Pendatchanska & Jennifer Rivera (Akademie Für Alte Musik Berlin)

Label: Harmonia Mundi
  • Stravinsky: The Rake’s Progress

Vladimir Jurowski, conductor; Topi Lehtipuu, Miah Persson & Matthew Rose; Jean Chatauret, producer (London Philharmonic Orchestra; Glyndebourne Chorus)

Label: Opus Arte
  • Vivaldi: Teuzzone

Jordi Savall, conductor; Delphine Galou, Paolo Lopez, Roberta Mameli, Raffaella Milanesi & Furio Zanasi, Jordi Savall & Manuel Mohino, producers (Le Concert Des Nations)

Label: Naïve Classique
  • Wagner: Der Ring Des Nibelungen

James Levine & Fabio Luisi, conductors; Hans-Peter König, Jay Hunter Morris, Bryn Terfel & Deborah Voigt; Jay David Saks, producer (The Metropolitan Opera Orchestra; The Metropolitan Opera Chorus)

Label: Deutsche Grammophon
I haven’t seen or heard a few of these selections, but I’m sure that they are each very special.
I wish all of the nominees luck and I hope you watch the stream today to see who comes out on top!
Happy Listening!
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