Lawrence Brownlee, Sarah Coburn, Constantine Orbelian, and the Kaunas State Symphony’s I Puritani gets a 4.5-star rating and Recording of the Month distinction in Limelight Magazine!
“This latest offering, featuring Bellini’s mellifluous swansong I Puritani, may just be their finest to date, conducted as usual by Constantine Orbelian, with Brownlee joined by the excellent American coloratura soprano Sarah Coburn. … First of all, a big tick goes to Orbelian and his fine orchestral forces. His expansive yet dramatically alert pacing of the opera gives the singers plenty of breathing space to make the most of solos and ensembles. The recording has just the right degree of resonance and air around the voices. The balancing, with the splendid Kaunas State Choir and soloists well forward, allows room for some telling aural and special effects, especially in the atmospheric opening scene with its sonorous fanfares, drums and church bells. As Elvira, Sarah Coburn is a real find. Steely in the middle register and silvery on top, her voice is a lovely instrument. What’s more, she invests the text with plenty of character, ensuring the role never becomes merely a coloratura showcase. … Lawrence Brownlee is equally impressive as Arturo, his lyric tenor managed superbly in what is a demanding role. Flexible, and strikingly comfortable with music that sits high in the voice, his A te, o cara is magnificently spun, while the cheeky top F that Bellini calls for in the final ensemble is a moment of special pleasure. … Kazakhstani baritone Azamat Zheltyrguzov and Lithuanian bass Tadas Girininkas are more than up to the demands of the lower-voiced men. … With only a handful of Puritani studio recordings in the catalogue, this new version can be welcomed without reservations.”—Clive Paget, Limelight Magzine