Romanian soprano Angela Gheorghiu's superb rendition of "L'ora fatal s'appressa...Giusto ciel! In tal periglio" (Gioacchino Rossini, L'assedio di Corinto, 1826; act III). This is bel canto singing at its finest.
Check out also the playlist "Angela Gheorghiu - A Vocal Portrait of the Great Diva": it contains 200 clips adding up to more than 25 hours of superb music - it is Youtube's most comprehensive resource on Angela Gheorghiu (you find the playlist by doing a Youtube search with the full name of the playlist).
Frequently compared with MARIA CALLAS for her innate musicality, dramatic flair, sense of style, and exquisite musicianship, and with RENATA TEBALDI for the extraordinary quality of her voice and her natural affinity for verismo roles, Romanian soprano ANGELA GHEORGHIU is the most known contemporary soprano and probably the only one from the current generation who will be remembered 100 years from now. Gheorghiu's luscious, ravishingly beautiful timbre is instantly recognizable and her stage presence, glamour, and charisma are legendary. Situated in the transition zone between full lyric and spinto, her velvety, silvery, slightly veiled voice conveys morbidezza and is remarkably phonogenic and rich in harmonics.
"Anytime I think that something is beyond this woman's capacity, she ALWAYS proves me wrong. Whatever reservations I may have had about her choice of repertory, I would never deny that Gheorghiu is probably the greatest soprano in the world now. I am a collector of opera recordings with some 60 other sopranos in my collection, so this isn't something I would say lightly. To badly paraphrase Lord Byron, all that's best of dark and bright meet in her aspect and her voice. Listening to her sing is like looking at a nebula through a telescope and seeing the glowing of new stars cradled in the interstellar dust that gave them birth. Her voice has power in addition to sweetness, and most important of all, it has soul. Gheorghiu's technique and musicianship are superb. More important is her superb sense of line, her beautiful control of dynamics (all the way down to heavenly pianissimi), her intelligence, her instinctively right feelings regarding musical expression. With Gheorghiu, like with Callas, it is the music first and foremost which dictates her emotions. As many others have noted, she finds the right individual voice and personality for every character and situation, and not only that, she makes each individual word mean something. Gheorghiu is a rarity, a singer of true individuality and genius. May she continue to astonish us." Joy Fleisig, New York (Amazon.com review)
"Vocally, Angela is leagues above any other soprano in recorded history. Not only is the voice thick, luscious, and velvety, but she is also able to emote her VOICE in a way that to me is unprecedented. I have yet to hear a singer who carries emotion into the voice better" (comment made on Youtube by user longliveclassicmusic).
"I continue to feel that Angela Gheorghiu's voice comes the closest to Maria Callas's in tone, texture, and focus. There is a voltage factor in her voice that I have yet to match in any modern classical soprano. I am never disappointed. And I am always energized by her incredible concentration. She always draws me into wanting more....." (comment made on Youtube by user johntmarohn1)
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