By Anthony Tommasini
FOR months now, the acclaimed soprano Renée Fleming, her recording company and her public relations agency have been working hard to make one thing clear: “Dark Hope,” her new Decca recording of indie rock songs, is not a crossover project.
Crossover! Heaven forbid! To many classical music critics and tradition-minded artists, the commercial crossover projects in the last two decades are sure signs, in the words of the esteemed British baritone Thomas Allen, that “well-organized hijackers” and “money-grabbing, P.R.-led” marketers are using “wet T-shirted” violinists to — horror or horrors — sell classical records.
Whew. No wonder Ms. Fleming is at pains to distinguish “Dark Hope” from crossover. But what is crossover exactly?Keep reading...