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David Denton
David's Review Corner, February 2020

This rather strange assortment of concert and operatic excepts is gathered together to showcase the young London-trained Azerbaijan lyric soprano, Seljan Nasibli.

Opening with Ravel’s Sheherazade, she immediately establishes her credentials to sing the French repertoire, her quiet passages having an innate beauty, and when the score needs passion we find a voice of vibrant quality. She handles the French language to good effect, and is well supported in the climatic moments by the Ukraine orchestra, the diminuendo that leads into the second part—La Flute enchantee—nicely handled by the conductor, Yalchin Adigezalov. With Nasibli he makes good musical sense of the final, L’Indifferant, with its many and various subtle colours. Maybe by changing the order of the tracks we could have been spared the massive jolt into Samuel Barber’s Andromache’s Farewell from The Trojan Women by Euripides. Nasibli confidently tackles this quite extended score that requires a dramatic power-house soprano, but I was happier when we reached the excerpts from Puccini’s opera Turandot, where Nasibili touchingly pictures the slave girl, Liu. Then again I enjoyed the seductive aria from Massenet’s Thais, where the courtesan ask the mirror to ‘Tell me that I am beautiful’, Nasibili floating passages of seduction. The recording made in the studio of the National Radio Company of Ukraine has Nasibili placed forward of the orchestra, but it is transparent in capturing an ensemble in fine form. © 2020 David’s Review Corner

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