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Currently starring in Puccini at Covent Garden, Grigolo has already convinced British fans (Manon in 2010) that he is a member of that rare breed – the Italian tenor who sings French.

This solo album nevertheless misses its target. His Werther, which he has not yet sung in costume, is competent enough, but in popular arias by Bizet, Gounod and Offenbach he confuses softness and sweetness with poetry, and the recital ends up sounding generic. The most valuable numbers are the least known – “Rachel, quand du Seigneur” from Halévy’s La Juive and “Pays merveilleux” from Meyerbeer’s L’Africaine.

Vittorio Grigolo

The Romantic Hero

(Sony)

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