Joyce DiDonato, mezzo soprano & Craig Terry, piano, Featuring the Legendary Jazz Players Chuck Israels, Jimmy Madison, Lautaro Greco, & Charlie Porter
“Perhaps the most potent female singer of her generation” (the New Yorker), multi GRAMMY Award winner Joyce DiDonato returns to the Schubert Club’s International Artist Series to perform a special program in the Ordway Music Theater. With a voice that is “nothing less than 24-carat gold” as proclaimed by The Times, she is among the world’s most entrancing performers. Born in Kansas, Joyce has soared to the top of the industry both as a performer and a fierce advocate for the arts, gaining international prominence in operas by Handel and Mozart, as well as through her wide-ranging, acclaimed discography. Joyce’s program for this concert will feature music from her upcoming recording, SONGPLAY. In her own words, “this is a project of experimentation and play, aimed at giving a joyful (playful!) experience to the listener.”
Joyce DiDonato greets you with a song in her heart and twinkle in her eye. The American mezzo-soprano’s program Songplay unites extraordinary musicians from the varied worlds of opera, jazz and tango in the pure pleasure of improvisation, experimentation and exchange. Together they create their own musical language, surprising listeners with timeless melodies transformed and universal stories retold over centuries; songs in English, in Italian and – naturally – in the universal language of music.
“We have essentially created our own sound-world, fusing together music from the Baroque era and classics from the jazz world – with a few other surprises tossed in,” explains Joyce. “We’ve all let down our guard (some of us have even let down our hair) and we’ve each expanded the musical traditions that we have come from to create our own style for this program. It’s joyful, it’s exuberant, it celebrates great music, and it shines a spotlight on the timeless nature of a great song.”
ProgramOn Songplay, along with her hand-picked band led by pianist and arranger Craig Terry, Joyce draws inspiration from Cavalli and Chet Baker in equal measure. The languishing heart in Giordani’s Caro mio ben is as emotionally charged as Jerry Bock’s hopeful Will he like me? Perhaps the most compelling reminder of how the music of Songplay breaks down barriers is from
DiDonato’s experience leading vocal and composition workshops in the New York prison Sing Sing, where one of the men who is incarcerated was particularly moved upon hearing her rendition of Caro mio ben: ‘I feel like I've known this song my whole life.’
This program is an all-encompassing celebration of song – one in which there are no boundaries or rules. Let’s play.
Please join us one hour prior to the performance for a pre-concert talk led by Mark Bilyeu.
MusiciansJoyce DiDonato, voice
Craig Terry, keys
Chuck Israels, double bass
Jimmy Madison, drums
Lautaro Greco, bandoneon
Charlie Porter, trumpet