OP2755. LES PECHEURS DE PERLES, w.Fournet Cond. Concertgebouw Orch.; Alain Vanzo, Erna Spoorenberg, Jan Joris, Guus Hoekman, etc. (Belgium) 2-Verona 2707/08. Long out-of-print, final copy!
"...Vanzo combines all the elements of bel canto, whatever the selection. A seamless legato is joined with a technique that produces a beautiful, effortless sound....Vanzo's voice caresses the music and demonstrates elegance."
- Bob Rose, FANFARE, Nov./Dec., 2005
"Alain Vanzo made his debut at l'Opéra and the Opéra-Comique in 1957, going on to sing the Duke of Mantua in 1957. He became known and respected as a lyrical tenor and graduated towards a more robust tenor, culminating in his taking on Werther at age 40 and Don José at age 45! By the time he reached the age of 48, on 20 April, 1965, he sang with Montserrat Caballé (her American debut) in a concert performance in Donizetti's LUCREZIA BORGIA at Carnegie Hall. Finally, after his 1976 performances of FAUST in the US, he had become a star.
In 1985, at age 57, [Vanzo] starred in the Paris Opéra's historic revival of Meyerbeer's ROBERT LE DIABLE which the company had not staged for some 90 years. Mady Mesplé, the soprano and a frequent vocal partner, told Le Monde that 'with [Vanzo's passing in 2002] a whole page of French lyric history has vanished."
- Anne Midgette, THE NEW YORK TIMES, 24 Feb. 2002
"Erna Spoorenberg was a Dutch soprano who was born in Yogyakarta, Java, now part of Indonesia. As a child, she studied the violin and singing and, at the age of 14, she studied under Isa Neuhaus, a singer with the Düsseldorf Opera. Spoorenberg then studied singing under Aaltje Noordewier until she was 17, whilst continuing her violin lessons under Julius Röntgen. At the conservatory, she decided to pursue singing in preference to the violin.
In 1947, she made her debut on Radio Hilversum, singing Mozart's motet EXSULTATE, JUBILATE. In 1949, she auditioned for Karl Böhm and was given a guest contract at the Vienna State Opera, soon becoming a permanent member. Returning to the Netherlands, she was eventually offered a contract with De Nederlandse Opera for 25 performances per season. Her debut on 15 September 1955 was as Violetta in LA TRAVIATA. She performed in Hamburg and Berlin and concert tours throughout Europe. In 1963 and 1965, she toured the Soviet Union, appearing at the Kirov and the Bolshoi Theatre. In 1968, she debuted in the United States.
Parallel to her opera career, she gave many recitals, often with Geza Frid, and also as a soloist. In a 1957 recording of Bach's ST MATTHEW PASSION with De Nederlandse Bachvereniging, conducted by Anthon van der Horst, she was the soprano soloist. From 1970 to 1977, she taught at the Royal Academy in Brussels, and from 1971 to 1988 in the Sweelinck Academy of Music in Amsterdam. After 1978, she worked as a private teacher."
- Zillah D. Akron