Jessye Norman With James Levine | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

Jessye Norman With James Levine 

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Those of us who were lucky enough to hear the supreme collaboration of soprano Jessye Norman and conductor James Levine in act one of Wagner's Die Walkure last July at Ravinia, will never forget the experience: it was music making of the very highest order. Norman is at the height of her vocal talents and is quite simply the greatest American soprano presently singing. Her power, her range of dynamics and vocal color, her expressivity and musicianship are second to none. Lieder recitals are generally not appropriate for a space as large as Orchestra Hall, but in this case, don't worry about the singer being heard--she can set any section of the place on fire. An extra bonus of this "duo recital," as it is being billed, is the expert and subtle piano accompaniment of James Levine, lent out from Ravinia management and pulled away from his busy season at the Met for this special appearance. Included on the program will be lieder of Beethoven, Brahms, Debussy, and Schumann. It should be another glorious and memorable evening. Sunday, 7:30 PM, Orchestra Hall, 220 S. Michigan; 435-6666.

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