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Jessye Norman杰西•诺曼

地区: United States of America 美国
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杰西·诺曼自幼在唱诗班接触音乐,儿童时期就表现出了非凡的音乐才华。1968年她在慕尼黑国际声乐大赛中一举夺魁,成为国际声乐界冉冉升起的新星。随后她登台柏林德国大剧院、米兰LaScala大剧院、英国皇家歌剧院、美国纽约林肯中心等世界顶级艺术殿堂,高亢嘹亮而且音域宽广的声线使她稳坐“世界第一女高音”的宝座。
杰西·诺曼的演唱清新且富于生气,浑厚且富有色彩。她横跨高中低音,高音圆润、中音结实、低音浑厚,嗓音的穿透力极强。最难得的是杰西·诺曼十分注重对作品的整体把握,歌曲的感情内涵诠释准确到位,特别是控制气息的本领无人能及。她演唱黑人灵歌很多时候都是半声唱出来的,这种独特的发声方法在乐坛相当罕见,堪称一绝。
杰西·诺曼灌录的唱片在世界各地也大受欢迎,舒曼的《妇女的爱情与生活》、勃拉姆斯的《艺术歌曲集》、拉威尔的《夏夜》等作品经过她的诠释成为唱片史上的经典版本。她热爱各种类型的音乐,歌剧、清唱剧、艺术歌曲、民歌、灵歌,甚至流行歌曲等都是她涉足的领域。杰西·诺曼今年获得了第48届“格莱美终生成就奖”,此前她曾先后在1989年、1990年和1999年3度获得“格莱美最佳歌剧奖”。
A prominent American soprano, Jessye Norman was the daughter of a schoolteacher and an insurance broker. She started singing spirituals at the age of four at Mount Calvary Baptist Church; one Saturday while doing her chores she heard an opera for the first time, broadcast on the radio. She became an instant opera fan and started listening to recordings of Marian Anderson and Leontyne Price. Nat "King" Cole was also a major inspiration for her.
When she was 16, she started studying at Howard University in Washington, where her voice teacher was Carolyn Grant. She sang in the university chorus and had a job as soloist the Lincoln Temple United Church of Christ. In 1965 she won the National Society of Arts and Letters singing competition. She continued her studies at Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore, and at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, where her most important studies were with Elizabeth Mannion and Pierre Bernac.
In 1968 she won the Munich Competition, leading to her operatic debut as Elisabeth in Wagner's Tannhäuser in Berlin. A major European operatic career quickly developed: she appeared as Meyerbeer's L'Africaine at Maggio Musicale in Florence in 1971, Verdi's Aïda at La Scala in Milan in 1972, and as Cassandra in Berlioz's Les Troyens at London's Covent Garden the same year. These roles are all princesses and bespeak a major part of her stage persona, a commanding and noble bearing, partly due to her uncommon height and size. But this is even more a function of her unique, rich, and powerful voice. She has an uncommonly wide range, encompassing all female voice registers from contralto to high dramatic soprano.
As her operatic career developed, she also made important recital debuts, including London and New York in 1973. She made an extensive North American concert debut in 1976 and 1977, but did not appear in opera in the United States until 1982. This was with the Opera Company of Philadelphia, in a double bill as Dido in Purcell's Dido and Aeneas and Queen Jocasta in Stravinsky's Oedipus Rex. Her Metropolitan Opera debut was as Cassandra in 1983, the opening night of the Met's centennial season.
Her interpretation of Strauss's Four Last Songs is legendary. Its slowness is controversial, but the tonal qualities of her voice are ideal for these final works of the great Romantic German lieder tradition. She also sings the Gurrelieder of Arnold Schoenberg, and the same composer's Erwartung. She sang that opera on a memorable double bill at the Met with Bartók's Bluebeard's Castle, which was broadcast nationally. She has also appeared on live broadcasts of season-opening concerts of the New York Philharmonic.
In addition to the direct and emotionally expressive qualities of her singing, her performances also impress through formidable intellectual understanding of the music and its style, as well as first-rate musicianship. She studies the languages of the music she sings, and has been acclaimed in her singing of Mussorgsky songs in the original Russian, in the German Romantic lieder repertoire, and in French music from Berlioz to contemporary composers.
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