February 23, 2015

Maria Callas Remastered Edition launches Deezer app

A new online streaming app explores the life and legacy of the most famous opera star in recording history.

Warner Classics’ Maria Callas Remastered Edition was one of the most highly anticipated and critically acclaimed releases of 2014, winning the Classica and Diapason awards for Reissue of the Year. These accolades are testimony to the fruits of a yearlong labour of love, in which La Divina’s complete studio recordings (1949-69) were remastered by a team of expert sound engineers at the famed Abbey Road Studios, in 24-bit/96kHz sound for the first time, from the original master tapes.

All 39 albums in the Maria Callas Remastered Edition are now available to millions of listeners on the Deezer streaming service as part of Warner Classics' new app dedicated to the most famous opera star in recording history.

Available for free in English, French, Italian and German, the app is designed to offer not only an accessible introduction for users beginning to explore classical music thanks to the convenience of online streaming, but also an indispensible collection of high-quality recordings and biographical materials for opera-lovers and completists.

Users will experience the striking difference in quality from previous Callas remasterings: as Gramophone magazine enthused, “The recording now sounds like a million dollars...restoring to us the sound of the voice as it would have been heard in the studio.”

The Maria Callas app offers extensive insights into the life of an artist who transcended the world of opera to become a true, everlasting cultural icon. Alongside the searchable catalogue of the Remastered Edition’s complete opera and recital albums, including an album showcasing her greatest arias, there is a detailed timeline of Callas’ career and tragic personal life, featuring rare photographs of the diva.

A bonus ‘making of’ digital album exclusive to Deezer contains interviews with Simon Gibson, the award-winning sound engineer who spearheaded the project, in conversation with Callas’ own engineer Robert Gooch (now in his nineties), who says he was “knocked over” and “practically in tears” listening to the soprano singing Casta Diva remastered from his original recording. For audiophiles, the album presents a comparison of aria excerpts with old and newly remastered versions heard side by side.

Opera buffs can test their knowledge by identifying arias in a blind listening test for the chance to win prizes in regular Maria Callas giveaways.

With this major Remastered Edition now available to millions via the Maria Callas Deezer app, Warner Classics brings one of the most significant recorded legacies into the 21st century and to a wider audience than ever before.

“You couldn’t ask for better than what Warner Classics has done with Maria Callas – Remastered. For longtime believers, this project rekindles the sacred fire; for new converts, this set is a beacon illuminating the mysterious but indispensable art of Maria Callas.” –New York Observer

Maria Callas: available online and via smartphone.