Saturday, 24 September 2011

Mojca Erdmann, Mozarts Garden, Mostly Mozart, Mostly Sweet

Mojca Erdmann: Mozarts Garden or mostly mozart. CD 2011. Deutsche Gramophone

If one upcoming soprano is marketed for stardom it is the German lyric soprano Mojca Erdmann. With the same manager as Anna Netrebko, the ways for major contracts seems paved, such as Zerlina both in Baden-Baden this summer and in the new upcoming Met production this fall.

Initially named "mostly mozart" for the German release, the international release will be called "mozart´s garden". A more catching title, agreed for this all-Mozart program ranging from Zaide to Magic Flute.

From the accompanying material to the CD we learn that Mojca Erdmann loves Mozart more than anyhing, that Mozart makes her cry and that she loves flowers. And this is how Deutsche Gramophone markets her: Sweet, sweet sweet. She also looks sweet, of course.

And, almost needles to say, she sings sweetly as welll. And she does have a beautiful voice, especially in the high register. What I miss, is individuality, personality. She sings Pamina as she sings Zaide. Sweetly, clearly concentrating on the beautiful sound over the textual drama. And, though the voice indeed is beautiful, to my taste her use of a certain slow vibrato is excessive in the middle register, and more than once this specific quality reminded me of some pop singers attempting opera.
Though perhaps unfair (to Mojca Erdmann), it is almost impossible not to compare her to Anna Prohaska, also German, also in her mid-twenties and with overlapping repertoire on stage.

Personality, obviously, is something to develop. But I would expect to see more at this stage of her career if she eventually is to become truly loved by audiences. Publicity may go some (a long) way, but eventually it is her personality that will make her career.

The bottom line (scale of 1-5, 3=average): 3

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