Jonas Kaufmann

Schubert: Winterreise

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A superstar of opera, Jonas Kaufmann is somewhat less renowned for his interpretations of art songs, though this 2014 Sony release of Franz Schubert's Winterreise is his second disc in the genre, following his 2009 recording of Die schöne Müllerin for Decca. Even though it's more recognizable in the context of his Wagner and Verdi roles, Kaufmann's fluid and strongly supported tenor voice is well-suited to Schubert's arching lines and lyrical expressions, and its warm tone and rich timbres convey a variety of moods and emotions with minimal effort and no strain. Kaufmann and his longtime accompanist Helmut Deutsch have performed this song cycle in recital many times, and this performance reflects an ease and familiarity with the material and each other's timing that seem quite natural and spontaneous. Sony's recording does justice to the vocal part and the accompaniment by evenly balancing them in the mix, rather than recessing the piano to favor the singer.

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