World famous mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato and conductor-pianist Yannick Nézet-Séguin join forces to take on one of the most brilliant song cycles ever written: Schubert’s Winterreise (Winter Journey). DiDonato, however, casts a different light on this beloved cycle of 24 songs in telling their story from the perspective of the woman, the lost love. Nancy Plum, Town Topics writes: “The question of what happened to the woman who sent the narrator on a tortuous journey was not answered in the Wilhelm Müller poetry from which Schubert drew the text, but DiDonato created a scenario onstage of being that woman, reading from the narrator’s journal and responding to the inherent despair.”
New York Classical Review wrote about Joyce Didonato’s interpretation: “…what stood out was the heavy emotion that came through in her singing, as she lingered on a syllable here, pressed her tone there. She created vivid feelings with her contrasts…”
Few women sing Schubert's desolate, passionate anti-odyssey of the rejected male lover, but when they do it can be memorable. Never more so than in this superb performance, where Nézet-Séguin is the perfect companion. DiDonato has a voice of rare beauty, but even more heartbreaking than the loveliness of her singing is her endlessly varied dramatic colouring of the text. Incomparable.
– Sunday Times UK (David Cairns)
Drawing on her formidable range of vocal colour, DiDonato captures the drama within each song, and across the cycle. Any fan will enjoy the insight DiDonato brings.
– The Guardian/Observer (Fiona Maddocks)