Today's Classical Music Video

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Amazing Jessye Norman in Amazing Grace

Last evening, I attended an extraordinary event—the return of the great Jessye Norman to Toronto in a program of Broadway/Jazz standards, with tribute to Nina Simone, Lena Horne, Odetta, Ella Fitzgerald and Duke Ellington.  The re-invented opera diva is now an authentic jazz stylist.  She sang two encores; the last was "Amazing Grace," accompanying herself (in the first part) on the piano, then walking around the stage urging the audience to join in.  It was a magical moment.  Here is her singing this spiritual in Berlin in 2009.  In the review of the CD issued live from this event, English critic Edward Seckerson tore it to pieces.  I'll let you decide.
- Joseph K. So



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