Le nouvel Observateur (magazine) is running a small interview with American soprano Barbara Hendricks.
At fifty-eight years old (although she recently slowed-down, unable to tolerate the hassle of travel and the chaos of the big cities) she's still going strong with recitals around the world.
Not that she hasn’t done enough yet: An entertaining writer (if you go to her website’s "Editorial" section, you can read her views on almost everything from airplane security to her love of silence), Goodwill Ambassador (there is a Junior High School in France named after her, and she is an Honorary Ambassador for Life of the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees), political activist (loves Al Gore), human rights defender (via the establishment of the 1998 Barbara Hendricks Foundation for Peace and Reconciliation), Hendricks is a proactive soprano, and uses her fame to assist others less privileged.
Most recently in her spectrum of ongoing projects, she launched a new record label called Arte Verum, which she will use to release her own proprietary catalog of exclusive recordings. And since its establishment in January 2006, it shows promise: the first release was her "Canciones Españolas", a celebration of four Spanish composers, and an upcoming release will be her "Lieder of Schumann."
She explains in the interview that her old label EMI had been generally out-of-touch with the needs of the artists, was only interested in profits, and therefore slowly phased-out her works from their catalogs. This did not sit well (at all) with the diva, who decided to take matters in her own hands, therefore bolstering the very industry that would insure her vocal legacy.
Although we won't be buying her stuff (only suckas need to actually buy discs am i rite), we support the entrepreneurial nature of Hendricks, and wish her nothing but success with her label. ok j/k about that piracy stuff...OC would never stick it to the man or be like take that, MAFRIAA with our 32 digit hex sequence cracks and pw generators. never ever. oh my never.