Classics European – 2006

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Classics European

Classics European Version 2006 CD album Europe EMI

1. La Wally
2. Anytime Anywhere
3. Ave Maria
4. Lascia Chi’O Pianga
5. Hijo De La Luna
6. What You Never Know
7. En Aranjuez Con Tu Amor
8. La Luna
9. It’s A Beautiful Day
10. Nella Fantasia
11. The Music Of The Night
12.Pie Jesu
13. Winter Light
14. Nessun Dorma
15. Time To Say Goodbye
16. A Question Of Honour (Part II)

Sarah’s personal liner notes from the European release of Classics: The Best Of Sarah Brightman.   Thanks to Jeffrey / hameshaluna from Official SB Forum

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1. La Wally
This aria, from the Italian opera La Wally, had for a few years been part of the classical repertoire that I had been performing in concerts. Because of my passion for and vocal familiarity with this song, it was an obvious choice to record. I also had a successful chart hit in Germany with this song under another guise {A Question Of Honour}.

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2. Anytime, Anywhere
This is an adaption of Adagio in G Minor by the Italian Baroque composer, Tomaso Albinoni. I have always enjoyed adapting popular instrumental pieces for voice, and this particular piece was irresistible. The Baroque era of music has a natural rhythmic pulse that we chose to enhance the percussive flow of this song. My producer, Frank Peterson, together with myself, our engineer Michael Soltau, and Sicilian lyricist Chiara Ferra, had a wonderful time putting this composition together.

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3. Ave Maria
While the music for this song originates from composer Franz Schubert, my inspiration for singing it comes from Verdi’s opera Otello, where the young girl {Desdemona} is saying this prayer for peace while also thinking of her jealous lover, Othello. This is why I allowed my voice to be breathy and sensual. The video was banned in certain parts of the world due to its sensuality.

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4. Lascia Ch’io Pianga
I adore Handel’s music and this piece has always sounded like a modern-day ballad, withstanding the test of time.

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5. Hijo De La Luna
My favourite Spanish composer, Jose Mario Cano, wrote this song. I have recorded a song of his on almost everyone of my albums. His lyrics are truly beautiful.

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6. What You Never Know
This was a new song written for me by composer Stephan Moccio. Before meeting him in person, I had always enjoyed the style of his work and he, likewise, mine. Being part of the mutual admiration club we decided to meet. I flew to his home in Canada where we spent a great day together exchanging ideas. A few weeks later came What You Never Know, which I included on my album Harem.

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7. En Aranjuez Con Tu Amor.
I originally heard this well-known Spanish melody song by Jose Carreras and I wanted to do a version of it for soprano.

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8. La Luna
This beautiful song is from the Czech opera Rusalka. I first learned of this opera as a child and it inspired me to open the door to discover the classical singer’s repertoire. In the early days of my classical vocal training I listened to many of the more experienced pupils in my school sing this song in the difficult language of Czech and then in English, which for me never lived up to the musical origins. Years later, when I planned to record it, I decided to give it Italian lyrics and let my voice have a more natural, airy quality in the verses as they lie quite low for a soprano. I recorded the song in Prague with the Prague Symphony Orchestra, where the musicians created a moment of perfection as they magically identified with a piece of their culture.

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9. It’s A Beautiful Day
Having always been interested in ambient electronic music, I was excited to team up with composer/producer Christopher von Dylen, who has been successful in this field for many years. We mixed a part of the poignant Un Bel Di from Madame Butterfly along with a rock section for which I wrote English lyrics. The song was a favourite in Asia and popular during my Harem World Tour.

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10. Nella Fantasia
I had always loved the music of Ennio Morricone, and it took me many years to persuade the composer to allow me to adapt this haunting instrumental with lyrics. Since its release in 1998, many singers have covered this version and it has gone on to become a staple for vocal repertoire.

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11. The Music Of The Night
The song The Music Of The Night is recognised as the phantom’s love song from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical The Phantom Of The Opera. However, there is a personal story behind the origins of this special piece of music. Originally titled Married Man, it was privately written for me by Andrew Lloyd Webber when we first started collaborating.

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12. O Mio Babbino Caro
A beautiful, timeless, classic piece of music, what more can one say.

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13. Pie Jesu
Andrew Lloyd Webber had always wanted to set music for the Latin requiem mass. One Sunday morning in the early-1980s, we were in New York City reading the morning newspapers, and he noticed an unsettling article about a young boy who had been forced by the Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia to shoot his elder sister. Andrew was so shaken by the article and by the worldwide abuse of children caught up in political situations, that it moved him to compose Pie Jesu. The song became part of his classical composition, [i] Requiem, and I performed it as a duet with boy soprano Paul Miles-Kingston. Pie Jesu had a Top 5 British chart entry and I received my first Grammy nomination for Best New Classical Artist in 1986. I also recall the moving experience of performing Requiem with Placido Domingo and conductor Lorin Maazel in a variety of prestigious venues, including the Metropolitan Opera House in New York City.

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14. Winter Light
I wanted to record this song because one of my favourite classical contemporary composers, Zbigniew Preisner, wrote the verses and I love it.

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15. Nessun Dorma
What can I say? Probably one of the best songs ever written for the tenor! Why do the boys get all the best pieces? I couldn’t resist. When performing my world tours, this is always the most popular with the audiences.

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16. Time To Say Goodbye
I first heard this song while searching for a piece of music that would work as a duet and be compatible for a performance I was asked to do at a televised sport event. A friend had recommended I listen to the album of a little-known tenor named Andrea Bocelli. At that time he had released a few albums in Europe but had only received recognition in Belgium. After buying his album, I let it lay on the top of my piano for a few days. Finally I put the CD into the player and sat open-mouthed as I listened to the song Con Te Partiro. I asked myself, why has this song been around for so long and not a hit? This is a worldwide smash! I quickly called Frank Peterson and my then manager, Jurgen Otterstein, and asked them to invite Andrea to record and perform this piece with me. He came to our studio in Hamburg, Germany a week later, where we finished the vocals in just under an hour. The song was reproduced by Frank with added English lyrics, thus was born the classic Time To Say Goodbye. Andrea and I premiered the song successfully at the sports event, and it immediately hit the charts as the most selling single in Germany and then went on to be a massive hit all over the world. Since then, both Andrea and my music careers have flourished exponentially.

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17. A Question Of Honour
The operatic opening and closing of this song is derived from the aria La Wally. This song was originally commissioned by the celebrated German middleweight boxing champion, Henry Maske, to be performed during one of his televised boxing matches. It was the first time I broke the mould and mixed an established piece of opera with rock. A remix of this song later became a club hit.

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