A TRIBUTE TO PAVAROTTI

13 November, 2008 in the Pump Room, Cheltenham

'Full marks to Bel Canto Opera' Roger Jones - the Gloucestershire ECHO (scroll down for full review)

 

A special concert dedicated to the memory of the world's best-loved tenor

featuring the Portuguese tenor Bruno Ribeiro

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SUPPORTED BY PRINCIPALS OF BEL CANTO OPERA

Sue Black

Robert Bateman

Kate Bennett

Patrick Briddon

Edward Harper

David Purcell

Josephine Williamson

AND THE BEL CANTO ORCHESTRA

CONDUCTED BY WILLIAM BELL

The concert raised over £400 for the Burma Cyclone Appeal

 

Review by Roger Jones, critic of the Gloucestershire ECHO

"The death of Luciano Pavarotti left a huge gap in the world of opera, so full marks to Bel Canto Opera for putting on a gala evening of music to celebrate his remarkable legacy - and also raise funds for the Burma Cyclone Appeal.

 The star of the show was Bruno Ribeiro, a young Portuguese tenor who impressed local audiences when he sang in Bel Canto's The Force of Destiny earlier this year. Mr Ribeiro knows how to pull at the heartstrings as he showed in the Lehar classic You are my Heart's Delight and the Neapolitan songs of which Pavarotti was so fond.

 Conductor William Bell had also assembled plenty of local talent, including G & S stalwart Kate Bennett who sang Mimi's aria with such feeling. Patrick Briddon's Una furtiva lagrima revealed a tenor voice of great sensitivity, while David Purcell's as Macbeth communicated vividly the Scottish king's despair. 

 The orchestra were a little overpowering in some of the arias but they acquitted themselves well in the Polonaise from Eugene Onegin and the Intermezzo from Carmen which featured some exquisite flute playing by Peter Tomlinson.

 Bel Canto's next production will be Don Carlos and the generous helping from of Verdi's masterpiece provided a foretaste of treats in store.

 Ribeiro and Susan Black set the tone singing  the duet Io vengo demondar with conviction. Edward Harper as the loveless King Philip engaged our sympathy in a similarly powerful performance of Ella giammai m'amo, and  Josephine Williamson brought the King's mistress Princess Eboli to life in O don fatale. A stirring duet by Ribeiro and Robert Bateman pledging eternal friendship rounded off the sequence."

 The evening ended sumptuously with the aria Pavarotti made his hallmark - Nessun dorma. 

        ROGER JONES    

Sue Black, Kate Bennett, Jospehine Williamson, David Purcell, Robert Bateman, Bruno Ribeiro, Patrick Briddon, William Bell

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