Anna surely is a 21st century Diva. There’s is no negative flavour to this status. On the contrary, she fully deserves to be one. Her majestic presence, scenic posture, and..regardless her early Cinderella story, when Gergiev noticed her musical talent while she was mopping a Mariinsky floor, or her rather public private life, there is one thing that makes us forget everything and be fully magnetised – it is her voice. It takes us everywhere, it makes us travel, marvel and admire. Historically, divas were the ones changing course of the world. Whether it was Pouline Viardot, and her charm over geniuses of both Turgenev and Chopin or Maria Callas who has taken opera singing to the utmost dramatic angle, Netrebko seems to take it even further: she adds a physical presence, a Meyerhold drama plasticity on stage so strong that the rather spacious Carnegie hall stage seems simply too small for her.
She has matured into a real artist who not only relies on her looks but shows her intellect, depth and emotional generosity. Anna was singing in 6 languages: Russian, German, Italian, Czech, English and French. It is almost amusing to follow a settle changes of the voice intonations and depth depending on the language and its phonetics. Anna sang Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninov, Rimski-Korsakov, R.Strauss, Debussy, Charpentier, Bridge, Leonkovallo, Dvorak, Moore and Offenbach. And one could only be travelling even more with a wonderful almost celebrity-like looking Anna.
I would like to compliment the amazing talent of pianist Malcolm Martineau, who has found his niche in the world of “too many pianist”: one could tell he “accompanies” best singers in their recitals and lieder nights, but I would rather say co-creates, supports, orchestrates, offers rhythmic and sonoric stability, guides through.
When listening to the opera singer during the opera production, one can be easily carried away by the decoration, staging, orchestra, choir and a overall production. It is a completely different experience when a singer performs in recital. One can no longer hide imperfections as a magnifying glass of a solo performance is the toughest critic ever. But this was never an issue for Anna as the more magnified is the glass the more nuances of her talent we could admire.