Albums

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Operafragmenten - Verschenen op 29 november 2018 | Les Indispensables de Diapason

Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or
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€ 17,99

Volledige opera's - Verschenen op 9 november 2018 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or
Lady Macbeth's introduction alone, "Vieni t'affretta", sung by the formidable Shirley Verrett is enough to make this an immortal record! But there's a lot more to come. Recorded in the middle of a 1975 anthology performance at La Scala in Milan and superbly produced by Giorgio Strehler, this album possesses a theatricality that is difficult to recreate in a studio. Claudio Abbado directs with great subtlety and eloquence. Domingo, Cappuccilli, and Ghiaurov are all on top form. It's rare that this blend of Shakespeare and Verdi is performed with such a perfect sense of the dramatic. This is a brilliantly unique record. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Opera - Verschenen op 19 oktober 2018 | Supraphon a.s.

Hi-Res Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or
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Operafragmenten - Verschenen op 5 oktober 2018 | Warner Classics

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or - Qobuzism
For her first recital with orchestra album, young Franco-Danish soprano Elsa Dreisig had the idea of presenting five pairs of songs in which each part of the pair is ambiguously related to the other, like a mirror’s reflection. This process leads to striking juxtapositions of different musical styles, dramatic moments, historical periods and contrasting voices; classicism and romanticism complement each other, terror answers joy, and the result is a view of the feminine soul all its facets. The first pairing involves two mirrors: the one in which Marguerite from Gounod's Faust admires herself and Thaïs's mirror in Massenet's opera (Thaïs). There follows Puccini's vision of Manon Lescaut, and then Manon (sans Lescaut) as imagined by Massenet. Following this we have Juliette, this is a rather daring pairing of the largely-forgotten early romantic German composer Daniel Steibelt with Gounod's Juliette. Elsa Dreisig then moves onto the two famous Figaros, one from Rossini's Barber (Rosina) and the other from Mozart's Marriage, with the gentle tones of the Countess. Finally, and more daring still, we end with the Salome of the Hérodiade by Massenet, a tender young woman who is not after anyone's head; and then Strauss's Salome, with her sanguinary madness. Probably in order to avoid the temptation of comparisons with other recordings, our singer has opted for the 1907 French version – note that this work by Oscar Wilde was itself originally written in French. This is the most extraordinary selection that one could hope for in a first recording from any artist, all accompanied by the Montpelier Orchestra, conducted by Michael Schønwandt. © SM/Qobuz
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Operafragmenten - Verschenen op 28 september 2018 | Alpha

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or - Qobuzism
The first solo album from the excellent youngster Julien Behr, who has already played at the Paris Opéra, the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, the Bordeaux and Lyon Opera Houses and cities such as Salzburg, Vienna, London, Cologne and many other great venues as well as making recordings of various lyrical works including L’Enfant et les sortilèges with Bavarian Radio. As debut albums go, he has made a daring choice in selecting some of the more unknown areas of French opera rather than the more popular pieces from Don José, Romeo, Faust and other big names. Instead, he has taken some gems from the Romantic repertoire (if we extend it up to the First World War for the sake of argument) which are little-heard of. From Gounod, he has selected Cinq-Mars ; from Bizet, La Jolie fille de Perth (one of Bizet's most exquisite passages); from Thomas, Mignon; and then, better-known but still uncommon, Léhar The Merry Widow; Godard, Jocelyn; and Delibes Lakmé. His diction is utterly impeccable; his transparent and airy voice evokes Heddle Nach or Jussi Björling, which serves the repertoire perfectly. The album closes with a few hits from the Romantic repertoire such as Vous qui passez sans me voir by Charles Trenet – well, the lyrics are from the Fou chantant, while the music is by Johnny Hess and Paul Misraki, and the song was originally written for Jean Sablon – evidence of Behr's love of lighter genres, for sure. . © SM/Qobuz
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Volledige opera's - Verschenen op 14 september 2018 | Bru Zane

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or - Choc de Classica
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Volledige opera's - Verschenen op 22 juni 2018 | Warner Classics

Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or
€ 199,80

Volledige opera's - Verschenen op 15 juni 2018 | Profil

Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or
€ 19,99

Opera - Verschenen op 20 april 2018 | CPO

Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or
€ 11,98

Opera - Verschenen op 6 april 2018 | ICA Classics

Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or
€ 21,49
€ 14,99

Operafragmenten - Verschenen op 2 maart 2018 | Decca Music Group Ltd.

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or - Diapason d'or / Arte - Qobuzism - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
Nowadays it might seem rather strange to describe a composer as a “singing master”, but, during the eighteenth century, this was not the case at all. In Italy, almost every composer worthy of the name wrote opere serie (Porpora wrote at least forty- ve): serious opera was the dominant musical genre, glorifying the human voice above everything else. It was the maker or breaker of musical reputations, with its nest singers the rst superstars of music. Therefore composers, though generally eclipsed by the fame of their leading men and women, needed to understand the human voice and all its remarkable capabilities, both technical and histrionic, in order to be able to exploit the possibilities of the operatic form at a time when those “machines made for singing”, the castrati, had brought the vocal art to a pitch of perfection never known before, nor equalled since. Though this recording is bringing Porpora’s name to public attention again on the 250th anniversary of his death, his fame as a singing teacher has probably obscured, until recently, his remarkable qualities as a composer, quite simply because two of the most famous castrati were among his many pupils, namely Gaetano Majorano, known as Caffarelli, whom Porpora once called “the nest singer in Europe”, also famed for his amorous antics and arrogance on- and off-stage, and the even more celebrated Carlo Broschi, who, under his stage name of Farinelli, amazed audiences and set hearts a- utter for fteen years throughout Europe, before being called to Spain to heal a crazed King by the power of his voice. Max Cencic remarks: “Porpora was a severe teacher, I think, maybe almost sadistic in his demands — you need 120% control of breath, brain and voice”. Legend indeed has it that he taught Caffarelli one page of exercises, and those alone, for six years. The formal alternation of aria and recitative in opera seria conceals a great range of emotional expression, that varietas that Erasmus famously described as “so powerful in every sphere that there is absolutely nothing, however brilliant, which is not dimmed if not commended by variety”. In such forms as the orid aria di bravura or the lyrical aria di sostenuto, the composer’s fantasy only provided a framework for the singer to embroider: the performer’s skill in ornamentation and other emotional devices was of paramount importance. Porpora’s many years of both teaching and composing experience made him, in Max Cencic’s opinion, “one of the top ten composers of Italian Baroque opera. I chose the arias for this recording almost by instinct, by what ‘felt right’. There is no way one can encompass a composer of such quality in one album, and each piece is a treasure in its own right. Though technical display is everywhere — leaps, rapid scales, trills, long phrases — Porpora’s special and utterly captivating melodic gift always shines through.” The arias are all taken from works composed at the height of Porpora’s fame, from Ezio (Venice 1728; “Se tu la reggi al volo” is a semiquaver spectacular) to Filandro (Dresden 1747, with a ravishing siciliano in “Ove l’erbetta tenera, e molle”), including three of the operas he composed for London during the 1730s, in direct competition with Handel (Arianna in Nasso 1733, Enea nel Lazio 1734 — real reworks here in “Chi vuol salva” — and I genia in Aulide 1735). The Teatro San Carlo in Naples, perhaps the most famous of all opera houses at that time, saw the premiere of Il trionfo di Camilla in 1740, and the two arias recorded here show Porpora at his best: the music of “Va per le vene il sangue” evocatively matches its darkly suggestive text, while “Torcere il corso all’onde” combines rapid- re coloratura with elegance of line. In the three arias from Carlo il Calvo (Teatro delle Dame, Rome 1738) the singer is similarly called to match Porpora’s varietas with his own: from the scurrying oriture of “So che tiranno io sono” to the high-lying phrases of “Se rea ti vuole il cielo”, and the beguilingly hypnotic sostenuto of “Quando s’oscura il cielo”. Porpora’s orchestral writing is also remarkably varied, all the more so in that he generally uses only strings, nowhere better than in the elaborate lines of “Torbido intorno al core” from Meride e Selinunte (Venice 1726), where voice and violins entwine in an elaborate and emotionally suggestive web of divisions. However, sometimes he pulls out all the sonority stops, as in the martial “Destrier, che all’armi usato” where, at the rst performance in the Teatro Regio, Turin in 1731 trumpets and horns vied with the unmatchable power of the voice of Farinelli. As Max Cencic has said: “How can we emulate the great castrati? That is hard to pin down, but these voices were the very soul of Porpora’s music.” -Nicholas Clapton © 2018 – Decca Group Limited
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€ 14,49

Volledige opera's - Verschenen op 2 maart 2018 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or
€ 32,99
€ 23,49

Volledige opera's - Verschenen op 3 november 2017 | Decca Music Group Ltd.

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or - 4 étoiles de Classica - Preis der deutschen Schallplattenkritik
Until now, Porpora’s Germanico in Germania has, with the exception of one or two virtuoso arias, remained firmly hidden on library shelves. However, during his lifetime Porpora was as famous for teaching singing (one of his pupils was Farinelli) as for his compositions, so it’s no wonder that his score is a veritable feast of vocal delights ripe for resurrection. As a composer, Porpora’s reputation spread throughout Italy, especially to Venice, where he was “maestro delle figlie at the Ospedale degli Incurabili” (one of the city’s famous music schools for orphans) from 1726 to 1733, and Rome, where the Teatro Capranica saw the premiere of Germanico in Germania in February 1732. In Rome, by Papal edict, operas were “all-male”, and this cast was seriously “all-star”. Clearly Porpora enjoyed stretching the singers to their utmost potential, employing every vocal trick at his command. Germanico was played by the experienced alto castrato Domenico Annibali. The en travesti female roles were taken, as was often the case, by young singers at the start of their careers. For this recording boasting another “all-star” cast led by countertenor Max Emanuel Cencic, female roles are of course held by female singers. The excellent Capella Cracoviensis, playing on period instruments, is led by Jan Tomasz Adamus. © SM/Qobuz
€ 31,99
€ 27,99

Volledige opera's - Verschenen op 24 november 2017 | Warner Classics

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or - 4F de Télérama - Gramophone Record of the Year - Gramophone Award - Gramophone Record of the Month - 4 étoiles de Classica
We will gladly forgive the occasional "weakness" in sound technology in this recording of Troyens by Berlioz (recorded live in concert in April 2017). In light of the first-rate quality of the music and vocals that appear on the disc (a majority of which are French voices, with Stéphane Degout at their head) this immense work is from the Strasbourg Philharmonic Orchestra and the three choirs which have been brought together – because the work demands immense swelling choirs – which are the choir of the Opéra national du Rhin, the Opéra National de Bade, and the Strasbourg Philharmonic's own choir. This recording rests, of course, on the complete original edition, which gives the listener a chance to hear Les Troyens as the work was performed in 1863, at the Théâtre-Lyrique, in which some intense chopping saw Acts I and II condensed into one part and Acts III to V into another, producing two distinct operas (La Prise de Troie and Les Troyens à Carthage). We also get a taste, naturally, of Berlioz's immensely rich orchestral innovations: with every new work, he would invent some exciting new prototype from scratch, never content to rest on his laurels. The listener should note the presence of six saxhorns, recently invented by Adolphe Sax (of whom Berlioz was an indefatigable champion, even if he didn't often use his instruments in his scores, no doubt because of the poor quality of the early instrumentalists who learned - however well or badly - Sax's instruments); bass clarinet, and an army of percussion pieces including several instruments which must have been rare in those days: crotales, goblet drums, tom-toms, thunder sheets... clearly, this is a milestone in the Berlioz discography. © SM/Qobuz
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Opera - Verschenen op 7 juli 2017 | Warner Classics

Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or - Choc de Classica
The operas of Mozart are synonymous with the festival at Glyndebourne, where exemplary performances are staged amidst the verdant landscape of southern England. Glyndebourne’s first music director was the distinguished conductor Fritz Busch, an exile from his native Germany. These pioneering recordings, deriving primarily from performances at Glyndebourne’s original theatre, date from the festival’s inaugural season (1934) and the years to 1951. Both Le nozze di Figaro and Così fan tutte were world premiere recordings – indeed, Figaro was the first-ever complete recording of a Mozart opera. In newly remastered sound, these classic interpretations of the three Da Ponte operas and Idomeneo can be enjoyed with unprecedented immediacy. Fritz Busch (1890-1951) was one the greatest German conductors of the first half of the twentieth century, noted for his illuminating performances and his ethical principles. He was famous for his performances and for enlarging the repertory and discovering new composers. He premiered operas by Paul Hindemith and Pfitzner very early in his carreer and when in 1922, he became music director of the Dresden State Opera, he premiered Strauss' Intermezzo (1924) and Die Ägyptische Helena (1928), Hindemith's Cardillac (1926), Busoni's Doktor Faust (1925), and Weill's Der Protagonist (1926). Busch’s open contempt of the Nazi government, which came to power in Germany in 1933, caused him to be fired from his post in Dresden – even though he was not Jewish. Then John Christie, a wealthy English landowner, invited Busch to become music director of a summer opera festival at his country estate in Glyndebourne. Glyndebourne soon became a prestigious summer festival, famous for meticulous musical preparation and astute casting. Mozart became they mainstay of Glyndebourne. After the outbreak of World War II (which closed Glyndebourne from 1939-1945), Busch withdrew mainly to South America, although he made appearances at the New York Philharmonic and the Metropolitan Opera. He resumed his association with Glyndebourne in 1950 but died in London soon after, in 1951. The curtain rose on the first Opera Festival performance at Glyndebourne on 28 May, 1934. It was intended as “not the best we can do, but the best that can be done anywhere”, in the words of the festival’s founder, John Christie, who built a 300-seat opera house with an orchestra pit and sophisticated technical and lighting equipment. The first Glyndebourne season in 1934 lasted for two weeks, and comprised six performances each of Le nozze di Figaro and Così fan tutte, a work that regained its place in the repertoire thanks to Busch’s advocacy. The artistic standards were astonishingly high. There were no star names among the singers (even though these recordings boast excellent singers such as Heddle Nash, Sena Jurinac, Erich Kunz, Blanche Thebom, Richard Lewis and so many others), but the emphasis was on the quality of the ensemble, built in that first season from outstanding, theatrically credible singers from Germany, Austria, Czechoslovakia, Finland, Italy, the United States and all over the UK. Le nozze di Figaro was recorded June 1934 and June 1935 (hence a « best of » both series), but a complete performance of course, Così fan tutte in June 1935, Don Giovanni in July 1936, while further excerpts from Cosi are dated June 1950, and from Idomeneo July 1951 – recorded not an Glyndebourne but at Abbey Road Studios in London, by the way.
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Volledige opera's - Verschenen op 16 juni 2017 | Warner Classics

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or - The Qobuz Ideal Discography
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Volledige opera's - Verschenen op 1 april 1962 | Decca Music Group Ltd.

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or - Choc de Classica
€ 20,99
€ 13,99

Volledige opera's - Verschenen op 12 mei 2017 | Ediciones Singulares

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or - 4 étoiles de Classica
€ 14,99
€ 9,99

Opera - Verschenen op 4 november 2016 | BR-Klassik

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or
€ 19,99

Opera - Verschenen op 1 juni 2016 | La discothèque idéale de Diapason

Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or

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