Tarja: Act I

Former Nightwish frontwoman scales up in Argentina

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It’s been seven years since Tarja Turunen left Nightwish. In that time, her old compatriots have gone from strength to strength with their new singer, leaving their departee in the shadow of their success.

But for all the struggles that Tarja has faced, started and exacerbated by an acrimonious Dear John letter, she’s an accomplished soprano with an unwavering commitment to expounding her talent. Her first live endeavour is available as both a CD and a DVD set. Opt for the former and you’ll feel like you’re missing out. The DVD is filmed in the Teatro El Círculo, Argentina, whose magnificent interior resembles the Royal Albert Hall, giving the show a real sense of ‘I wish I’d been there’.

As satisfyingly grandiose as the audio version is, the visual presentation is lavish and bombastic on a Trans-Siberian Orchestra scale, to the extent that even the drum solo is enjoyable. Building towards a climactic final half hour of solo favourites and an exceptional rendition of The Phantom Of The Opera, Act 1 is a worthy addition to any symphonic fan’s DVD shelf.