Reneé Fleming (right) and Susan Graham — two "cheerful Americans" often mistaken for each other — are planning an intimate evening of French song. Craig T. Mathew/Mathew Imaging hide caption

itoggle caption Craig T. Mathew/Mathew Imaging

Pianist Simone Dinnerstein has a passion for rhythmically free musical lines. Lisa Marie Mazzucco/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

itoggle caption Lisa Marie Mazzucco/Courtesy of the artist

Renee Fleming in the title role of Donizetti's Lucrezia Borgia at the Washington National Opera. Karin Cooper via Washington National Opera hide caption

itoggle caption Karin Cooper via Washington National Opera

Verdi trumps Shakespeare by inserting a hauntingly beautiful "Ave Maria" into his operatic version of Othello. Universal Classics hide caption

itoggle caption Universal Classics