Tuesday, January 11, 2011

David Foster Defends Andrea Bocelli and Jackie Evancho

Tenor Bocelli & star-maker Foster (Photo: Giovanni De Sandre)
"Pop, opera, it's a moving target, You have to dissect what's going on there, on a daily basis. With Jackie, I wasn't sure about her capabilities in either arena. One of the reasons I love Andrea Bocelli so much is that he truly is the only artist, who I know of, who walks in both worlds. He truly walks in the classical world and the pop world. Classical people don't love him because he doesn't project, but I say, 'Screw that.' He knows the repertoire inside out. To me, he is an opera singer."

10-year old Jackie Evancho
"After working with (Evancho) for two weeks, I may have discovered something about her that people may not realize. She is 100 per cent an opera singer, without a shadow of a doubt. She is not Charlotte Church. She is not Sarah Brightman. She is not Hayley Westenra. She is a real opera singer. And it's scary. It's scary, the depth of her knowledge and how deep she runs at 10 years old. It's just phenomenal."



  1. I agree with David! JACKIE IS A SUPERSTAR!

  2. Well with the utmost courtesy I must say Andrea Bocelli is NOT AN OPERA SINGER. Singing opera does not make you an opera singer.

    I love Jackie Evancho but at least for now she is firmly rooted in the crossover genre. She could be a real opera singer someday, but she is starting SO YOUNG. I hope maturity and oversinging leave her voice intact- I have doubts about the health of her technique.

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    2. I agree with everything you said. Bocelli is no opera singer. Foster is making a very ignorant comment when he says that he doesn't care that Bocelli can't project. Obviously Foster knows nothing about opera or what goes into making an opera singer. As for Jackie, she does have potential, but I, like you, fear that her poor technique may seriously damage her voice. I hope that her voice remains intact, but I sure have my doubts about that.

    3. Who are you guys? I'll give you 2 cents worth spending. They are both successful singers and Foster is a successful musician and producer. Your opinions are good for what?

  3. That statement of David Foster's disturbed me, but maybe he meant it in terms of her potential. But I'm pretty sure that Jackie Evancho, before Foster made that statement, declared that she does not sing or aspire to sing opera. This is still her position. In fact, her parents and others who look after her vocal health have wisely put certain operatic numbers off limits to avoid doing damage.

    She refers to herself as a classical-crossover singer, but as much as I love her for her talents, I would say that she doesn't fully fit in that category either. She sings a small number of classical pieces in a sort of bel-canto style (the comparison to which ends there, even though her voice is quite beautiful), but she also sings songs from the movies, Christmas songs and some contemporary numbers. She's a pop singer, but not in the Christina Aguilera sense. Her repertoire, her audience demographic and her singing style put her a category of its own, really, and I'm sure the Nielsen-Billboard statisticians tear their hair out trying to decide what category in which to report her record sales.

    In my opinion, people who have labeled her as an opera singer, or even a classical-crossover singer, have done more harm to her reputation than good, as these labels attract derision from those in the classical/opera world who resent the comparison, and who turn a critical eye toward her, holding her to standards of opera singing that would otherwise not apply, and should not apply (notwithstanding the fact that her voice is looked after anyway, and she is being trained not to damage it).

    I realize this blog post is a year old, but I think it's worth reminding everyone that Jackie Evancho is not an opera singer, and that this notion needs to be put out to pasture.

  4. Blah blah blah you all sound like a bunch of elitist snobs. He can sing, she can sing can any of you?

  5. With Jackie Evancho well underway in her 15th year and an incredible resume that includes collaborations with Bocelli, Carerras, Brightman, David Foster and a wide range of interest from the influential as well as millions of followers, Jackie neither needs nor desires the offhand criticism from the impotent snobbery.