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George Petrou, Il Pomo d'Oro, Max Emanuel Cencic - George Frideric Handel: Ottone (2017)

Posted By: ArlegZ
George Petrou, Il Pomo d'Oro, Max Emanuel Cencic - George Frideric Handel: Ottone (2017)

George Petrou, Il Pomo d'Oro, Max Emanuel Cencic - George Frideric Handel: Ottone (2017)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 972 Mb | Total time: 203:15 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Decca | # 483 1814 | Recorded: 2016

After a long period of neglect, Handel's 1719 opera Ottone has attracted renewed attention from historical-performance groups. The opera deals with episodes from the life of Otto II, Holy Roman Emperor in the 10th century, a topic so obscure that even for an 18th century audience an "argument" had to be attached to the libretto by way of background information. The opera was highly successful in Handel's own time, perhaps less for its musical value than for the always fun news stories about the stars in Handel's orbit; this time the feature was soprano Francesca Cuzzoni, who refused to sing the aria "Falsa imagine" until Handel threatened to throw her out a window.

Fabio Biondi, Europa Galante - George Frideric Handel: Imeneo (2016)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Fabio Biondi, Europa Galante - George Frideric Handel: Imeneo (2016)

Fabio Biondi, Europa Galante - George Frideric Handel: Imeneo (2016)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 586 Mb | Total time: 44:31+70:20 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Glossa | # GCD 923405 | Recorded: 2015

If, by this date, the London public was tiring of the Italian opera in which Handel had been excelling for decades, and the composer was now turning both to the oratorio and in the direction of the galant style, he was still able to call upon divos and divas of the quality of La Francesina and Giovanni Battista Andreoni to perform his music. Though not a success in its Lincoln’s Inn Fields staging in London, Imeneo was performed by Handel as his only Italian work during his season in Dublin (which also saw the first performance of Messiah), complete with additional arias to add to those praised in 1740 and a pruning of the libretto (which hadn’t received approval).

Alan Curtis, Il Complesso Barocco, Ann Hallenberg - Handel: Ariodante (2008)

Posted By: Vilboa
Alan Curtis, Il Complesso Barocco, Ann Hallenberg - Handel: Ariodante (2008)

Alan Curtis, Il Complesso Barocco, Ann Hallenberg - Handel: Ariodante (2008)
NTSC 16:9 (720x480) | Italiano | LinearPCM, 2 ch | Dolby AC3, 6 ch | 7.72+4.08 Gb (DVD9+DVD5) | 157 min
Classical | Label: Dynamic | Sub: Italiano, English, Francais, Deutsch, Espanol

Founded in Italy in 1992 by Alan Curtis, one of the most acclaimed specialists in the interpretation of pre-romantic music, Il Complesso Barocco, has become a renowned international baroque orchestra with a focus on Italian Baroque opera and oratorio. Their high standard for interpretation, intonation and stylistic accuracy has led to their being requested in the most important concert venues and festivals in Europe.

Philippe Herreweghe, Collegium Vocale Gent, Orchestre des Champs-Elysées - Bruckner: Mass No. 2 in E minor; Te Deum (2020)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Philippe Herreweghe, Collegium Vocale Gent, Orchestre des Champs-Elysées - Bruckner: Mass No. 2 in E minor; Te Deum (2020)

Philippe Herreweghe, Collegium Vocale Gent, Orchestre des Champs-Elysées - Anton Bruckner: Mass No. 2 in E minor; Te Deum (2020)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 208 Mb | Total time: 51:40 | Scans included
Classical | Label: PHI | # LPH034 | Recorded: 2012, 2019

Composed in 1866 for the inauguration of a votive chapel in Linz Cathedral, Anton Bruckners Mass no. 2 is a fine example of modernity blended with a centuries-old religious tradition, in that wind instruments are set in dialogue with choral writing inspired by Gregorian chant. Shorter in duration but scored for chorus and large orchestra with four soloists, his Te Deum of 1881 was acclaimed by such illustrious contemporaries as Hans Richter and Mahler, while the composer, usually very self-critical, opined that the score of this work would make God judge him kindly.

Ann Hallenberg, Federico Maria Sardelli, Modo Antiquo - Vivaldi: New Discoveries II ( (2012)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Ann Hallenberg, Federico Maria Sardelli, Modo Antiquo - Vivaldi: New Discoveries II ( (2012)

Ann Hallenberg, Federico Maria Sardelli, Modo Antiquo - Vivaldi: New Discoveries II ( (2012)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 354 Mb | Total time: 58:20 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Naïve | OP 30534 | Recorded: 2011

This is the 45th title in the Vivaldi Edition, 3 years after the first recording dedicated to Vivaldi scores discovered in Europe between 2000 and 2007, now in its 12th year. This second volume features the most recent discoveries in world premiere recordings and will further contribute to complete one of the most fascinating jigsaw puzzles in musical history Federico Maria Sardelli is a member of the musicological committee of the Istituto Italiano Antonio Vivaldi at the Fondazione Cini in Venice, for which he has published numerous scholarly essays. In July 2007 Peter Ryom chose him to continue his monumental work of cataloguing the music of Antonio Vivaldi; since then, Sardelli has been the editor of the Vivaldi Werkverzeichnis (RV).

Alan Curtis, Il Complesso Barocco - Gluck: Demofoonte (2020)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Alan Curtis, Il Complesso Barocco - Gluck: Demofoonte (2020)

Alan Curtis, Il Complesso Barocco - Gluck: Demofoonte (2020)
EAC | FLAC | Tracks (Cue & Log) ~ 1.10 Gb | Total time: 192:17 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Brilliant Classics | 95283 | Recorded: 2014, 2015

Demofoonte dates from the early Milan years of Christoph Willibald Gluck (1714-1787), long before the radical reform operas for which he is most famous and his break with opera seria and the librettos of Pietro Metastasio. Gluck arrived in the northern Italian city in 1737 and was mentored there by composer Giovanni Battista Sammartini. Though Sammartini primarily composed symphonies and music for the church, Milan boasted a vibrant opera scene, and Gluck soon formed an association with one of the city's up-and-coming opera houses, the Teatro Regio Ducal.

Andreas Spering, Capella Augustina - Handel: Imeneo (2003)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Andreas Spering, Capella Augustina - Handel: Imeneo (2003)

Andreas Spering, Capella Augustina - Handel: Imeneo (2003)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 582 Mb | Total time: 51:58+70:13 | Scans included
Classical | Label: CPO | # 999 915-2 | Recorded: 2002

This opera, Handel's penultimate, is relatively direct, both in its scoring–just strings and oboes–and its plot: Rosmene (soprano) must choose between Tirinto (mezzo-soprano), whom she loves and who loves her, and Imeneo (bass-baritone), who rescued her from pirates. Rosmene's confidante Clomiri (soprano) loves Imeneo, but it is unrequited; he loves Rosmene. Argenio (bass) is Rosmene's father; he wants her to marry Imeneo. This simplicity might lead you to believe that the opera is lightweight or emotionally void (it was referred to as an "operetta" at its premiere), but it's remarkable how involved the listener gets in the plot.

Andreas Spering, Cappella Coloniensis - Handel: Siroe, Re di Persia (2004)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Andreas Spering, Cappella Coloniensis - Handel: Siroe, Re di Persia (2004)

Andreas Spering, Cappella Coloniensis - Handel: Siroe, Re di Persia (2004)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 830 Mb | Total time: 79:08+75:57 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Harmonia Mundi | HMC 921826.27 | Recorded: 2003

While it isn't Handel's most obscure opera (hum a few bars from Catone, anyone?), Siroe, Re di Persia is definitely on the margins. It's hard to say why exactly, although the unflatteringly edited Metastasio libretto (by Nicola Haym) is surely part of the reason; the character and conflict development of the original are largely missing from the version Handel set. But the music is Handel at his best, and let's face it: from the perspective of a modern listener, plot is not the main draw of opera seria. With that in mind, Harmonia Mundi's complete recording, with Andreas Spering and the Cappella Coloniensis, is an excellent first step toward giving Siroe wider exposure. It's well played, thoughtfully conducted, and it features an excellent trio of leading ladies.

Alan Curtis, Il Complesso Barocco - Gluck: Ezio (2011)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Alan Curtis, Il Complesso Barocco - Gluck: Ezio (2011)

Alan Curtis, Il Complesso Barocco - Gluck: Ezio (2011)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 646 Mb | Total time: 69:25+77:25 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Virgin Classics ‎| 5099907092923 | Recorded: 2008

Gluck wrote his opera seria Ezio in 1750 for production in Prague. (In 1762, after the formal and stylistic breakthroughs of Orfeo ed Euridice, he revised the opera for a Vienna production, but it's the original version that's recorded here.) The opera has many of the characteristics of Italian late Baroque opera; it's essentially a series of arias separated by accompanied recitatives, the formula that the composer reacted against in Orfeo. It's not Gluck at his most innovative or original, but it's a fine example of opera seria, with a number of impressive arias and some very expressive recitatives, and it can make quite an impact in a performance as fine as this one.

Christophe Rousset, Les Talens Lyriques - Handel: Serse (2005)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Christophe Rousset, Les Talens Lyriques - Handel: Serse (2005)

Christophe Rousset, Les Talens Lyriques - Handel: Serse (2005)
NTSC 4:3 (720x480) | Italiano (LinearPCM, 2 ch) | (Dolby AC3, 6 ch) | 160 min | 7,84 Gb (DVD9)
Classical | Label: EuroArts | Sub: English, Deutsch, Francais, Italiano, Espanol | Recorded: 2000

Handel's opera recorded live at the Semperoper, Dresden, in June 2000. Equal parts comedy, tragedy and romance, the story revolves around the love both Xerses, King of the Persians, and his brother Arsamenes have for Romilda. Christophe Rousset conducts Les Talens Lyriques, with performances by Paula Rasmussen, Ann Hallenberg, Patricia Bardon, Isabel Bayrakdarian and Matteo Peirone.

Alan Curtis, Il Complesso Barocco - Handel: Ezio (2009)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Alan Curtis, Il Complesso Barocco - Handel: Ezio (2009)

Alan Curtis, Il Complesso Barocco - Handel: Ezio (2009)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 991 Mb | Total time: 67:56+61:08+57:45 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Archiv Produktion | 477 8073 | Recorded: 2008

Alan Curtis continues his exemplary series of Handel operas for Archiv with Ezio, a 1732 work that has received few modern productions. Its initial limited success and failure to generate much interest until the late twentieth century may have to do with its length (over three hours), its preponderance of recitatives, and the composer's reluctance to use the voices together in ensembles, so that the entire opera, until the final chorus, consists of solo singing. Handel's gift for astute psychological insight and distinctive musical characterization is evident throughout the score, and the recitatives, which are necessary for explicating Metastasio's convoluted plot, are not a problem when they are performed with as much vivid dramatic realism as they are here.

Alan Curtis, Il Complesso Barocco - Handel: Tolomeo (2008)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Alan Curtis, Il Complesso Barocco - Handel: Tolomeo (2008)

Alan Curtis, Il Complesso Barocco - Handel: Tolomeo (2008)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 767 Mb | Total time: 56:11+45:25+46:47 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Archiv Produktion | 477 7106 | Recorded: 2006

For the 1727 season – the waning days of opera's popularity in London – transplanted German composer George Frederick Handel wrote no less than three operas for the English capital's stage. Tolomeo, rè d'Egitto was the last and least enthusiastically received of them. Unsuccessfully revived in 1730 and then again in 1733, Tolomeo was unperformed for the next 200 years, and even now, it remains one of Handel's least performed and recorded operas. Prior to this Archiv set, only a 1995 Vox recording of the work with Richard Auldon Clark leading the Manhattan Chamber Orchestra had been released in the digital era.

Ann Hallenberg, Christophe Rousset, Les Talens Lyriques - Farinelli: A Portrait (2016)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Ann Hallenberg, Christophe Rousset, Les Talens Lyriques - Farinelli: A Portrait (2016)

Ann Hallenberg, Christophe Rousset, Les Talens Lyriques - Farinelli: A Portrait (2016)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 412 Mb | Total time: 79:39 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Aparté | # AP117 | Recorded: 2011

With more than a million copies sold, the soundtrack of Gérard Corbiau's film 'Farinelli' contributed considerably to the international renown of Les Talens Lyriques, in 1994. Back then the voice of the castrato Carlo Broschi, known as Farinelli (1705-1782), was created using a computer to mix the voices of countertenor Derek Lee Ragin and soprano Ewa Mallas-Godlewska. On stage, in 2011, rather than a falsettist, world-renowned mezzo Ann Hallenberg, was chosen by Christophe Rousset to portray the first rock star in the history of music.

Ann Hallenberg, Stefano Aresi, Stile Galante - The Farinelli Manuscript (2019)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Ann Hallenberg, Stefano Aresi, Stile Galante - The Farinelli Manuscript (2019)

Ann Hallenberg, Stefano Aresi, Stile Galante - The Farinelli Manuscript: Broschi, Latilla, Conforto, Giacomelli, Mele (2019)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 381 Mb | Total time: 72:04 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Glossa | # GCD 923521 | Recorded: 2019

With The Farinelli Manuscript Ann Hallenberg, accompanied by Stefano Aresi and Stile Galante, offers a scintillating reading of the music known to have been sung by the castrato Carlo Broschi during his 23-year stay in Spain (and sent as a present to the Empress Maria Theresa). Described as “a force of nature”, displaying flawless coloratura and a purity of timbre, the Swedish mezzo follows her previous appearance on Glossa with Aresi (a disc devoted to music associated with the later castrato Luigi Marchesi) with a spirited demonstration of the musicality which so attracted Farinelli to listeners at the Spanish court.

Philippe Herreweghe, Orchestre des Champs-Elysées, Collegium Vocale Gent - Brahms: Werke für Chor und Orchester (2011)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Philippe Herreweghe, Orchestre des Champs-Elysées, Collegium Vocale Gent - Brahms: Werke für Chor und Orchester (2011)

Philippe Herreweghe, Orchestre des Champs-Elysées, Collegium Vocale Gent - Brahms: Werke für Chor und Orchester (2011)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 245 Mb | Total time: 56:48 | Scans included
Classical | Label: PHI | # LPH 003 | Recorded: 2011

For his 3rd album on Phi, his new label published by the group Outhere, Philippe Herreweghe has brought together a splendid set of artists in the Lutoslawski hall in Warsaw. Ann Hallenberg, whose voice won over the public of some of the world’s most prestigious concert halls, takes on the Rhapsody for contralto solo and men's chorus by Brahms while the rest of the programme leads the listener through his essential works for chorus and orchestra. Herreweghe’s long-time affinity with the composer of A German Requiem has enabled him to provide a coherent and personal vision of those musical pages in which Brahms gave free course to his most intimate thoughts.