November 25, 2014

Maria Callas, Joyce DiDonato and Sabine Devieilhe win Diapason d'Or Awards

A night of operatic triumphs for Warner Classics & Erato at the 2014 Diapason d'Or Awards (Golden Tuning Fork).
Maria Callas Remastered Edition Diapason d'Or

Warner Classics & Erato swept the Diapason classical music awards in a ceremony held at Radio France in Paris last night, honoured to accept four prizes crowning the most significant opera releases of 2014.

The lavish Maria Callas Remastered Edition boxed set was declared Best Reissue in praise of the labour of love that saw La Divina's complete studio recordings remastered at Abbey Road. "And there was light!" proclaimed Diapason.

Allan Ramsay, one of the four engineers who spent a year working intensively on this pioneering project, travelled from London to accept the award in person.

From Callas to one of today's most in-demand divas: American mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato took home the golden Diapason for Best Opera Recital with her album of Neapolitan bel canto rarities, Stella di Napoli. "With a bouquet of wisely chosen arias, Joyce DiDonato serves up some real fireworks. The explosion of colours and emotions reignites the splendour of bel canto," Diapason enthused in its review.
Grand Theatre de l'Amour Sabine Devieilhe
From bel canto to the French Baroque, Diapason chose young lyric-coloratura soprano Sabine Devieilhe in the Best Baroque Vocal category for her debut album on Erato, Le Grand Théâtre de l'Amour, one of the most widely praised releases marking the 250th anniversary of Rameau's death this year. In the review published earlier this year, Diapason came under the spell of a soprano "as enchanting as she is impressive." The critic found it "difficult not to be charmed all the way through this guided tour through Rameau opera. The charm of the slender but full tone of a light soprano, flute-like highs and distinctly nuanced declamation." Sabine accepted her award in person and performed live at the ceremony.

Veteran opera director Peter Sellars also accepted an award in person on behalf of the New York Metropolitan Opera in the Best Opera category, for the DVD of John Adams' groundbreaking Nixon in ChinaThe recent revival of Sellars' 1987 world-premiere staging, conducted by Adams himself, was filmed as part of the Metropolitan Opera's acclaimed Live in HD series.

Congratulations to all the winners of the 2014 Diapasons d'Or.