The Twenty Most Beautiful Mezzo Arias
In opera, the mezzo-soprano (literally "half soprano") is rarely the bride, more often the bridesmaid – or just the maid. If sopranos tend to be angelic objects of idealized love, Mezzos are more often earthier. They are dignified, feisty and strong willed, not to mention aware of their charms, as is certainly the case with Carmen, the most famous mezzo character of all. Some of them take destiny into their own hands, but many also suffer at the hands of others: Dido, for example, the heartbroken Queen of Carthage abandoned by Aeneas. This playlist presents Dido as composed by both Purcell and Berlioz, as well as a series of other memorable characters from operas both well-known and rarely heard. We also feature oratorio with the inclusion of "Erbarme dich" from Bach's 'St Matthew Passion', one of most beautiful and moving arias of all.