The fabulous dramatic coloratura Soprano Julia Varady singing the insidiously sinister aria ‘La Luce Langue’ from Verdi’s opera Macbeth.
In this aria, the capricious Lady Macbeth revels her husband’s usurping of the throne that will in turn raise her as Queen. This is without doubt where the requirements of this role test the full range of a singer as the tessitura is predominantly contralto/dramatic mezzo and then has to ascend through dramatic runs all the way to the High B in an intense dramatic coloratura fashion. This aria is often a great indicator of who and who cannot sing this role, as pure Sopranos simply couldn’t handle this devilishly fluctuating vocal line that has to accommodate all three registers of the female voice with full support at both ends of the spectrum. The embodiment of an Assoluta role.
Varady although not as inflamed as Callas’s version, does an incredible job. The vocal line is so deviously sinuous, with a very dark hue concentrated within the middle to lower tones and then colours the high tones with incredible force, bristling with metal and malice.
One of the few singers with the inherent sensibilities for Verdi’s heaviest roles.