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Roberto Alagna - La Navarraise

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La Navarraise

Roberto Alagna

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La Navarraise is far from Massenet’s most famous opera. But can we even count it as an opera, considering that the composer saw it as a “lyric episode” and that it lasts only three quarters of an hour? Either way, it is indeed a work of the utmost maturity. It premiered in Covent Garden (sung in French) in 1894, featuring Emma Calvé, Pol Plançon and Albert Alvarez, the stars of their time. After a triumphant success in England, as well as in many European countries, La Navarraise disappeared from posters and was almost never be seen again. Italian Verismo and naturalism seem to have worn off on Massenet, as this is by far his “noisiest” score. The arrangement is filled with loud stage effects such as clapping hands, beating drums, clicking castanets, loud trumpets, clanging bells and shots from canons, shotguns and pistols. His music sometimes feels more like sound accompaniment rather than a lyrical passage. The musical content closely follows the theatrical action, which is very martial and turbulent indeed. Some, including the critic Willy, saw it as a kind of "Cavalleria española", and quite rightly so. The gloomy action takes place in the Spanish Basque Country around the time of its creation, as Massenet mentions the Third Carlist War that took place just two decades earlier. It would be a bit like if a composer today were to create music based on the Yugoslav Wars… Alongside Roberto Alagna as the male lead, we find the Polish soprano Aleksandra Kurzak in the title role. This recording adds to the discography of the work which, although it is not Massenet's greatest masterpiece, is clearly an underrated gem. © SM/Qobuz

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La Navarraise

Roberto Alagna

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1
La Navarraise, Act 1: Prélude 00:03:00

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, MainArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

2
La Navarraise, Act 1: "L'assaut à coûté cher, messieurs ! " (Garrido) 00:02:24

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, MainArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor - George Andguladze, Bass Vocals, FeaturedArtist

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

3
La Navarraise, Act 1: "Capitaine, je vois que vous appartenez" (Anita, Ramon) 00:02:48

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, MainArtist - Aleksandra Kurzak, Mezzo-soprano Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor - Issachah Savage, Tenor Vocals, FeaturedArtist

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

4
La Navarraise, Act 1: "Je ne pensais qu'à toi" (Anita, Araquil) 00:02:32

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, Tenor Vocals, MainArtist - Aleksandra Kurzak, Mezzo-soprano Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

5
La Navarraise, Act 1: "Araquil ! ... Mon père !" (Anita, Araquil, Remigio) 00:01:34

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, Tenor Vocals, MainArtist - Aleksandra Kurzak, Mezzo-soprano Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor - Brian Kontes, Baritone Vocals, FeaturedArtist

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

6
La Navarraise, Act 1: "Depuis deux ans je t'aime !" (Anita, Araquil, Remigio) 00:02:00

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, Tenor Vocals, MainArtist - Aleksandra Kurzak, Mezzo-soprano Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor - Brian Kontes, Baritone Vocals, FeaturedArtist

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

7
La Navarraise, Act 1: "Ah ! Mariez donc son cœur avec mon cœur !" (Anita, Araquil, Remigio) 00:02:28

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, Tenor Vocals, MainArtist - Aleksandra Kurzak, Mezzo-soprano Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor - Brian Kontes, Baritone Vocals, FeaturedArtist

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

8
La Navarraise, Act 1: "Etes-vous de la compagnie ?" (Anita, Araquil, Garrido, Remigio) 00:01:23

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, Tenor Vocals, MainArtist - Aleksandra Kurzak, Mezzo-soprano Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor - George Andguladze, Bass Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Brian Kontes, Baritone Vocals, FeaturedArtist

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

9
La Navarraise, Act 1: "Morts ! Les vieux compagnons, les meilleurs !" (Anita, Garrido, Ramon) 00:03:30

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, MainArtist - Aleksandra Kurzak, Mezzo-soprano Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor - George Andguladze, Bass Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Issachah Savage, Tenor Vocals, FeaturedArtist

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

10
La Navarraise, Act 1: "Crénelons les maisons donnant sur la campagne" (Garrido, Chorus) 00:00:52

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, MainArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor - George Andguladze, Bass Vocals, FeaturedArtist - New York Choral Ensemble, Chorus

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

11
La Navarraise, Act 1: "Ô bien-aimée ! Pourquoi n'es-tu pas là ?" (Araquil) 00:01:29

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, Tenor Vocals, MainArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

12
La Navarraise, Act 1: "Anita, la Navarraise ?" (Araquil, Bustamente, Ramon, Chorus) 00:01:59

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, Tenor Vocals, MainArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor - Michael Anthony McGee, Baritone Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Issachah Savage, Tenor Vocals, FeaturedArtist - New York Choral Ensemble, Chorus

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

13
La Navarraise, Act 1: "J'ai trois maisons dans Madrid" (Bustamente, Chorus) 00:03:04

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, MainArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor - Michael Anthony McGee, Baritone Vocals, FeaturedArtist - New York Choral Ensemble, Chorus

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

14
La Navarraise, Act 2: Nocturne 00:02:59

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, MainArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

15
La Navarraise, Act 2: "Alerte ! Alerte !" (Chorus) 00:00:19

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, MainArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor - New York Choral Ensemble, Chorus

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

16
La Navarraise, Act 2: "Mon argent ! ... Que dis-tu ?" (Anita, Garrido) 00:02:49

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, MainArtist - Aleksandra Kurzak, Mezzo-soprano Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor - George Andguladze, Bass Vocals, FeaturedArtist

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

17
La Navarraise, Act 2: "Voici ma dot !" (Anita) 00:00:45

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, MainArtist - Aleksandra Kurzak, Mezzo-soprano Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

18
La Navarraise, Act 2: "Blessé, mourant, j'espère !" (Araquil) 00:00:53

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, Tenor Vocals, MainArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

19
La Navarraise, Act 2: "Mourir ! mourir par moi !" (Anita, Araquil) 00:03:38

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, Tenor Vocals, MainArtist - Aleksandra Kurzak, Mezzo-soprano Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

20
La Navarraise, Act 2: "Mon fils ! ... Père !" (Anita, Araquil, Remigio, Ramon) 00:01:33

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, Tenor Vocals, MainArtist - Aleksandra Kurzak, Mezzo-soprano Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor - Brian Kontes, Baritone Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Issachah Savage, Tenor Vocals, FeaturedArtist

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

21
La Navarraise, Act 2: "Merci, la bonne Vierge !" (Anita, Garrido) 00:01:40

Opera Orchestra of New York, Orchestra - Jules Massenet, Composer - Roberto Alagna, MainArtist - Aleksandra Kurzak, Mezzo-soprano Vocals, FeaturedArtist - Alberto Veronesi, Conductor - George Andguladze, Bass Vocals, FeaturedArtist

2018 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company 2018 Alberto Veronesi under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

Album Description

La Navarraise is far from Massenet’s most famous opera. But can we even count it as an opera, considering that the composer saw it as a “lyric episode” and that it lasts only three quarters of an hour? Either way, it is indeed a work of the utmost maturity. It premiered in Covent Garden (sung in French) in 1894, featuring Emma Calvé, Pol Plançon and Albert Alvarez, the stars of their time. After a triumphant success in England, as well as in many European countries, La Navarraise disappeared from posters and was almost never be seen again. Italian Verismo and naturalism seem to have worn off on Massenet, as this is by far his “noisiest” score. The arrangement is filled with loud stage effects such as clapping hands, beating drums, clicking castanets, loud trumpets, clanging bells and shots from canons, shotguns and pistols. His music sometimes feels more like sound accompaniment rather than a lyrical passage. The musical content closely follows the theatrical action, which is very martial and turbulent indeed. Some, including the critic Willy, saw it as a kind of "Cavalleria española", and quite rightly so. The gloomy action takes place in the Spanish Basque Country around the time of its creation, as Massenet mentions the Third Carlist War that took place just two decades earlier. It would be a bit like if a composer today were to create music based on the Yugoslav Wars… Alongside Roberto Alagna as the male lead, we find the Polish soprano Aleksandra Kurzak in the title role. This recording adds to the discography of the work which, although it is not Massenet's greatest masterpiece, is clearly an underrated gem. © SM/Qobuz

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