Saturday, November 11, 2006

Philippe Jaroussky

I am reading Balzac's Sarrasine at the moment. Witnessing the public's reaction to countertenor Philippe Jaroussky's creamy voice and youthful presence stirs interesting thoughts in my head. Born in 1978, the French singer seemed poised for an international career, but a Google search revealed that, inexplicably, he's no longer managed by IMG Artists. Now represented by a French firm, he's performing mostly in his homeland.

That's a shame, because he's one of the finest and most exciting young singers I've heard. His strikingly beautiful voice--rich, creamy, incandescent--covers a large range, from a strong chest register to shimmering tones above the staff. In Jaroussky's mouth, Vivaldi's florid (understatement of the season) coloratura sounds beautiful and natural. But he's equally at home in slow, introspective pieces, where he unleashes tender and luscious legato.

Following Thursday night's concert at the Theatre des Champs-Elysees, his label, Virgin Classics, hosted a signing to mark the release of Jaroussky's new disc. He and conductor Spinosi have a clear love for their work. They never stopped talking, carrying on a constant dialogue with fans who passed through. I didn't see one person who wasn't wearing a smile. It was an hour before I finally arrived at the signing table, and there remained at least a dozen people behind me.

[Note: I need to put some links in here. I also need to update a couple entries.]

1 comment:

K.Lundell said...

having just found out about this amazing man, I'm having a hard time uncovering any kind of concert schedule, European or otherwise. do you have any leads? thanks! Kate