Hendricks's offer of Endless Pleasures, which features works by Handel and Purcell, for free is "a first for a classical music artist," said Believe, her digital distributor. The recording is under Arte Verun, the label Hendricks founded last year to "ensure production and the best possible distribution of her works."
Customers who pay above €7 are entited to download two more albums at the same price per unit.
The 59-year-old soprano's contract with EMI ended in 2004. Rock band Radiohead, whose recording contract with EMI expired the same year, also issued a pay-what-you-wish album last month.
Released October 10, In Rainbows sold 1.2 million copies within 24 hours, Gigwise reported.
"[The average price paid was] probably pretty close" to Ô£4 (currently $8), Bryce Edge of Courtyard Management, the firm that manages the band, told Billboard.
"What Radiohead did with their album was a genius idea," rapper Jay Z told The Guardian of London. "I'm gonna pay $50 for it."
According to Earthtimes.org, a recent study found nearly 60 percent downloaded the album for free.