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Sumi Jo & Dmitri Hvorostovsky with Moscow Chamber Orchestra

Sumi Jo & Dmitri Hvorostovsky with Moscow Chamber Orchestra

Posted July. 06, 2005 00:37,   


Jo Su-mi, a soprano who has fascinated music lovers with her clear, light, yet composed voice and magnificent skill, and Russian baritone Dmitri Hvorostovsky, who captures the minds of music fans with his overwhelming volume and big-scale yet intellectual expression. The two top musicians born in 1962 will perform on stage on July 30 at 7:30 p.m. at the Sejong Center for the Performing Arts under the title “Sumi Jo & Dmitri Hvorostovsky with the Moscow Chamber Orchestra.” Having first met in Bellini’s “I Puritani” at the London Royal Opera House in the early 1990s, what would they think of each other? We had the chance to interview them before the performance over the phone and through e-mail.

Jo Su-mi Describes Dmitri “Wild”-

Jo Su-mi is currently staying in New York for an outdoor performance of Bellini’s “La Sonnambula.” When she started her words with “Dmitri is…” over the phone, her voice hinted of curiosity and expectations.

Mr. Hvorostovsky had the solitude, prince-like look when he visited Korea for the second time. How is he viewed among colleagues?

“He is cool. Even though I haven’t talked to him in-depth, as a person, he is the same as his songs. Wild, passionate, sorrowful, yet something powerful hidden inside….”

Jo Su-mi featuring beautiful, light yet intellectual songs and Hvorostovsky overwhelming the audience. Don’t you think the combination will be a “Beauty and the Beast?”

“(Taken aback) Hmm…, we both are very ambitious. But I think I need to be somewhat ‘feminine’ this time since he’s too masculine. I guess that will come off well on stage.”

Hvorostovsky Says “Su-mi’s a Born Actress”-

Hvorostovsky highly praised Jo Su-mi via e-mail on his nationwide recital tour in Russia, saying, “Su-mi is an excellent singer and actress.”

What do you think is Jo Su-mi’s strength as vocalist?

“Su-mi has all that is asked of an opera singer. I’m not just talking about a distinctively attractive voice or vocal skills. You can see her true value when she performs on stage because of her outstanding acting skill that makes her immersed in the role.”

Did you also feel attracted to her as person?

“She is a very passionate and understanding person. Unlike many opera singers, she seriously listens to others’ words and songs. I was deeply impressed with her devoted acting during the rehearsals.”

Duet of Rossini and Verdi-

In the upcoming performance, the two vocalists will sing duets in Rossini’s Barber of Seville and Verdi’s Rigoletto. Alexander Borodin’s aria from “Prince Igor” sung by Hvorostovsky, Giacomo Meyerbeer’ aria from “The Star of the North” by Jo Su-mi, and other individual favorite songs will be introduced. The accompaniment will be played by the Moscow Chamber Orchestra, highly evaluated by Shostakovitch as the “world’s best chamber orchestra.” The show costs from 50,000 to 200,000 won. For more information, contact at 02―751―9607∼9.

Yoon-Jong Yoo gustav@donga.com