1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Accomplished but rather tame,
This review is from: My Personal Handel Collection (Audio CD)
A previous reviewer, despite his experiencing more enthusiasm for this recital than I, has hinted at a potential problem with it insofar as he suggests that it could be rather "indigestible" at one sitting, being a compilation of not perhaps the most striking or celebrated of Handel arias despite the presence of some famous numbers. Furthermore, Lynne Dawson does not evince the most varied or easily coloured of timbres, having a small, pure, rather "white" soprano which does not have the same colorific possibilities as the voices of Handel singers such as David Daniels, Eva Podles, Andreas Scholl and Lorraine Hunt Lieberson, all of whom are the soloists in CDs in my collection which do not bore me in the way I am afraid this one does. Another contributing factor is that they are more boldly and imaginatively accompanied than is Dawson here by a small, German period band whose tone is hardly grateful.
Dawson has made a very successful career singing mostly Baroque music, often in the company of Anne Sophie von Otter. From my point of view, that is not entirely without significance or by chance, in that von Otter is another singer whose pre-eminence and gifts I acknowledge without being able to say I much appreciate what I find to be a quality in her singing that often borders on the bland rather than the beautiful. I have enjoyed both artists, especially in their Gluck recording with Gardiner but I fear that this album does not thrill me, for all that I can hear Dawson's accomplishment. Her top is not especially effulgent and I really do need to hear more variety of inflection if I am not to think she is merely an efficient note-spinner.
I would particularly like to say that I esteem this disc, as it was a gift some years ago from a kind friend, who evidently derives more satisfaction from it than I have able to. I have periodically taken it down from my shelves in the hope that I would be more impressed on a subsequent hearing, without result.