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Cat. No. CHAN 3100 Price: £4 No. of discs: 1
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CHAN 3100 - Great Operatic Arias, Vol. 13 -  Bruce Ford 2
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Available From: 18 August 2003
"Each issue in this series of solo recitals presents, in the first place, an individual artist, a singer whose qualities can be more fully appreciated when they are shown in sequence over a wide programme. The singers represent, in turn, a particular type of voice, for instance, the ‘coloratura’ soprano (Elizabeth Futral), the lyric baritone (Alan Opie) or the dramatic bass (John Tomlinson). With each type goes the appropriate repertory, and one of the Great Operatic Arias series’ tenets is to explore and illustrate this. The present disc is Bruce Ford’s second in the series. The first (CHAN 3006) presented the lyric tenor in a ‘central’ programme, with well-known arias such as Handel’s ‘Where’er you walk’, Donizetti’s ‘I saw the tears’, and the Serenade from Bizet’s The Fair Maid of Perth. This is the fare of the tenore di grazia, the Tito Schipa, Heddle Nash or Léopold Simoneau of a generation or two ago. In this second disc, the type is less easily defined.

It is no disparagement of the three distinguished tenors mentioned, nor of Bruce Ford himself, to say that anyone who knows his art well might hesitate to place him side-by-side with them. For one thing, he belongs to an age which has developed a special expertise in florid music that in previous times was widely held to have been unsingable. For example, Bruce Ford’s previous recital disc ended with ‘Finish this futile argument’ – an aria from Rossini’s The Barber of Seville, which required a virtuosity unheard of at the time of the opera’s writing and which almost invariably was omitted until recent times. That number pointed ahead to this present disc, which demonstrates the extent and the brilliance of Bruce Ford’s technique.

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Reviews

Its a pleasure to hear these [arias] so ardently sung; Fords voice is beautiful, his technique never less than solid, with impeccable enunciation and style.When called for… the tenor shows spectacular coloratura facility.
Opera News

How refreshing to come across operatic recitals which eschew the hackneyed… The latest in the series is another contribution from Bruce Ford, and what a pleasurable 73 minutes it has given me.
International Record Review

Bruce Ford is a well-trained singer, gifted with a voice of fine quality, skilled in florid work not sung with the aid of aspirates or other separation devices; he sings expressively while… preserving a true legato; and, most important in this present context, his diction is clear and natural.
Gramophone

The American tenor has long been admired for the combination of solidity and verve in his Mozart and Rossini singing, and here his work in these two composers is well up to the high standards he has previously set.
Opera

Ford goes for his trademark Mozart and Rossini, and his fluency in the fast passages is complemented by his easy delivery. There are very few versions of the Counts guitar-accompanied serenade from The Barber as charming as this.
BBC Music Magazine

Bruce Fords previous solo disc in the Opera in English series (Great Operatic Arias – CHAN 3006) received excellent reviews: One of the finest of todays bel canto tenors… Fords attractive timbre, smooth legato and impressive high notes are well deployed throughout this disc.
BBC Music Magazine

 

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