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Extraits d'opéra - Verschenen op 23 november 2018 | Decca Music Group Ltd.

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or / Arte - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik - 5 étoiles de Classica
This new Vivaldi album marks a double anniversary, the thirty-year anniversary of the close collaboration between Cecilia Bartoli and the famous English label Decca, and the twenty-year anniversary of the very successful first Vivaldian opus. This time leaving behind Giovanni Antonini and his Il Giardino Armonico ensemble, Cecilia Bartoli has selected French musicians well versed in Vivaldi’s music, as if to demonstrate the universal nature of the Red Priest’s compositions. In fact, Jean-Christophe Spinosi and his Ensemble Matheus have distinguished themselves with Vivaldi’s instrumental music since their early days. They started off their collaboration with five concerts, dedicated of course to the Venetian composer, in Munich, Prague, Baden-Baden and Versailles. For their first recording together they selected ten opera titles, nine of which weren’t featured on the 1999 album. The plethora of Vivaldi operas provides an endless supply to recitalists who can easily put together, as is the case here, an extremely lively programme featuring the most beautiful gems of an extraordinarily expansive composer whose melodic liveliness has been a constantly fascinating topic. This release is also beautiful in itslef (accessible on your Qobuz account), as it features a photo book containing beautiful portraits of Cecila Bartoli taken by Roman photographer Viviane Purdom, who has devoted her life to masterfully shooting great classical musicians. Happy anniversary indeed! © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Intégrales d'opéra - Verschenen op 16 november 2018 | naïve classique

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 de Diapason - Gramophone Editor's Choice - Choc de Classica
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Intégrales d'opéra - Verschenen op 2 november 2018 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Gramophone Editor's Choice - 5 étoiles de Classica
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Extraits d'opéra - Verschenen op 15 februari 2019 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 de Diapason - Choc de Classica
Recorded in July 2018 at “Studio” - a new high-tech venue in the outskirts of Paris - this album (which was built entirely on Judith Fuchs' own idea) is dedicated to orphaned women in 19th century opera, between 1815 and 1850, who were struggling to escape the miserable conditions which they found themselves in. Following her huge success in 2018 in Rossini's Count Ory at the Opéra-Comique de Paris, Julie Fuchs was keen to further explore this repertoire. Conducted by Enrique Mazzola (a real “opera maestro”) the Orchestre National d'Île-de-France is dazzling in these operatic excerpts by Donizetti and Rossini, as well as - and most importantly – those by Pacini, Raimondi, Fioravanti, Berlioz, Barbieri and Meyerbeer. This album presents another opportunity for listeners to be won over by Fuchs’ sumptuous voice. The young French lyrical soprano first made a name for herself at the Festival d'Aix-en-Provence, before joining the opera ensemble at the Zurich Opera House in 2013. Further successes followed in Salzburg, Vienna and Paris as well as at the Teatro Real in Madrid. This incredibly versatile repertoire jumps from Mozart to Barbara, Cole Porter, George Crumb and Björk. Julie Fuchs knows no musical boundaries, performing with equal ease in opera as she does in concert next to the young pianist Alphonse Cemin. On Mademoiselle she sings in Italian, French and Spanish, journeying through romantic Bel Canto with a wonderfully original touch and revealing all aspects of her agile, sensual voice. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Intégrales d'opéra - Verschenen op 7 juni 2019 | Aparté

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 de Diapason - Gramophone Editor's Choice
While Mozart was largely overlooked in the French capital, Antonio Salieri took on the reigns of the Académie Royale de Musique (Paris Opera), a fruitful collaboration that was completely broken up by the French Revolution. After the success of his work Les Danaïdes, composed for Paris in 1784, Salieri worked tirelessly with Beaumarchais, spurred on by the success and scandal of his Figaro, on a new project which would become Tarare. Beaumarchais moved himself shamelessly toward stardom, skillfully self-promoting and attending rehearsals so as to assure that the orchestra played pianissimo to emphasize the primacy of his verse during performances. Beaumarchais found that the music was too overwhelming to “embellish the lyrics”.Created one year after Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro (which was relatively well-received in Vienna before triumphing in Prague), Tarare was an immense success in Paris maintaining the status of the composer’s repertoire despite the political turmoil of the time before disappearing from view around 1826, thereon ceasing to be played. Beaumarchais’ words were immediately adapted into Italian by Lorenzo Da Ponte to be performed and met with equal success in Vienna. Tarare is half lyrical tragedy, half comic opera with a hint of orientalism.After resuscitating Les Danaïdes and Les Horaces, Christophe Rousset finished off his series of recordings dedicated to Salieri’s French operas for the Parisian public. Tarare is very much of its time, that of the Lumières, and used the power of art to challenge despotism in all its forms. Thanks to Christophe Rousset’s excellent delivery and lively direction, this recording enables one to judge the merits of the composition and the chasm that separates an honest and talented musician from a solitary and impassioned one like Mozart. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Extraits d'opéra - 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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Intégrales d'opéra - Verschenen op 12 oktober 2018 | B Records

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Gramophone Editor's Choice - 5 étoiles de Classica
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Extraits d'opéra - Verschenen op 5 oktober 2018 | Decca Music Group Ltd.

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 de Diapason - Choc de Classica
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Extraits d'opéra - Verschenen op 31 mei 2019 | naïve classique

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 de Diapason
When it comes to prosperity, Vivaldi got pretty lucky. Thanks to a succession of happy accidents, his personal collection of manuscripts has survived through the centuries, allowing his music to be preserved, then later played and recorded. The contralto Delphine Galou and Ottavio Dantone, the director of the Accademia Bizantina, drew from this priceless batch of nearly 450 compositions to develop the program for this album of sacred music pieces dedicated to the alto voice.This new recording of the Vivaldi Edition, begun by NAÏVE many years ago, offers cantatas and arias for viola, functioning as perfect companions for the album of works sung by the same Delphine Galou. The lyrics, often by unknown authors, do not have a strong literary interest. Here, we find a pastoral world populated by shepherds in need of love as well as cruel and fickle nymphs, obeying the cannon of the time.Vivaldi takes advantage of these stereotypical characters to vary his expressive palette in a very subtle way and introduce the operatic style into works primarily intended for living rooms. The exceptional quality of his music generally transcends the commissioned work he is obliged to do, both in Mantua and Venice. These cantatas are accompanied here by some arias from his many operas. They allow Delphine Galou to fully express the variety and range of her singing through the pathetism of Liquore ingrato (Tito Manlio), the sweetness of "Andrò fida e sconsolata" of the same opera or the innocent grace of a childish song in the aria "È pure dolce ad un'anima amante" (Il Giustino). © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Extraits d'opéra - Verschenen op 26 oktober 2018 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 étoiles de Classica
Puccini love duets galore! That’s what the Polish soprano Aleksandra Kurzak and the tenor Roberto Alagna offer up here. Both are regulars on the world's greatest stages and their voices seem to have been tailor-made for this repertoire. The heroines - Mimì, Minnie, Tosca, Giorgetta, Butterfly and Manon - represent the absolute woman with a femininity that fascinates the composer, attracting him, inspiring him and making him fall in love. The male characters are undoubtedly a reflection of his own personality. Rodolfo, Mario and Calaf too, who is so besotted with Turandot that he risks his life for her: man, lover, seducer, villain, deceiver, poet, artist, knight or traitor... No doubt Roberto Alagna sees himself in these characters as well. Their traits are similar from one opera to the next, but Puccini knew how to make each vocal idiom wonderfully unique. © SM/Qobuz
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Opéra - Verschenen op 26 oktober 2018 | SDG

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Gramophone Record of the Month
Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria by Monteverdi poses a lot of problems for modern performers. There exists no definitive manuscript – although one may doubt how much people bothered back then with "definitive" versions of works which were re-written from one performance to the other, depending on the singers and instrumentalists that were on hand, the tastes of this or that star, the diktat of the Church – and the only copy dating from the composer's time, discovered in Vienna in 1881, is incomplete. When we try and compare this manuscript with different copies of the libretto which are still around today, the difficulties only increase. For this recording by Sir John Eliot Gardiner and the English Baroque Soloists, recorded live at concerts in September 2017, the decision was taken to fill in everything that could be filled in with a few passages borrowed from earlier works by Monteverdi. The Return of Ulysses dates from 1640, when Monteverdi was 74 years old, so there was a lot to choose from for these fillers. This version is almost certainly the closest approximation we have to the original yet, the singers have worked hard to give the most accurate reproduction possible of the vocal inflections demanded by the various formats employed by Monteverdi. These inflections are often very declamatory and sometimes sung to the fullest. The recitations and the melodies, the ensembles and the choirs: everything is treated with the utmost care and the effort put into contrast and clarity only enhances the quality of this recording. A magnificent rendition. © SM/Qobuz
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Extraits d'opéra - Verschenen op 9 november 2018 | Prima Classic

Hi-Res Onderscheidingen 5 de Diapason
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Opéra - Verschenen op 19 oktober 2018 | Supraphon a.s.

Hi-Res Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or
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Intégrales d'opéra - Verschenen op 8 maart 2019 | LSO Live

Hi-Res Booklet
“This is Rattle” is the name of a ten-day festival organised in 2017 at the Barbican Centre in London to celebrate Sir Simon Rattle’s return to the country and his debut at the elm of the London Symphony Orchestra. One of the high points was the presentation of Berlioz’s La Damnation de Faust, performed twice, a piece Rattle knows in fact very well and also conducted in Berlin. Half opera, half cantata, the work wasn’t intended to be performed on stage. Very much like in the Symphonie fantastique, written fifteen years earlier, and his upcoming opera Benvenuto Cellini, La Damnation de Faust is largely autobiographical; Berlioz identifies with Faust’s metaphysical suffering, between disillusioned idealism, forbidden love and internal demons. The London Symphony Orchestra is very familiar with Berlioz, having performed his work many times since the 1970s under the lead of its former conductor, the late Sir Colin Davis. Standout performances include American tenor Bryan Hymel as Faust and British mezzo-soprano Karen Cargill, radiant in the role of Marguerite, once again displaying the excellent French diction of international singers. Replacing Gerald Finley at the last minute, Christopher Purves plays a particularly elegant Mephisto. Yet another contribution to the discography put together on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the bubbling French composer’s passing. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Opéra - Verschenen op 9 november 2018 | Naxos

Hi-Res Booklet
The Tetralogy in China: even Wagner himself would never have dreamt it, even in his wildest dreams of world conquest armed with his "Gesamtkunstwerk". But Hong Kong Philharmonic finished recording the Götterdämmerung in January 2018, led by their musical director Jaap van Zweden. It is the product of four years of public performances and live recordings, a fine recipe for preserving the vivaciousness and continuity of the work. And if Wagner had had such a high-quality orchestra at his disposal, maybe he would have had the Bayreuth festival set up on the bank of the Pearl River in order to see real justice done for his masterpiece... The record itself brings in some of the most experienced voices of the time. The "touchstone versions" have some stiff competition in the form of this new complete edition. The Hong Kong Philharmonic may lack some of the sometimes-weighty "traditions" of some other outfits, but they play this music as if it had just been written… © SM/Qobuz
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Extraits d'opéra - Verschenen op 7 juni 2019 | deutsche harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet
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Opéra - Verschenen op 17 mei 2019 | PentaTone

Hi-Res Booklet
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Opéra - Verschenen op 1 maart 2019 | Chandos

Hi-Res Booklet
La vida breve is the first great work by Manuel de Falla, not only on account of the brilliance of his achievement, but also because in this score the powerful musical personality of the composer shines through. It introduces an orchestral scope that was previously unheard of in Hispanic musical theatre; there are direct references to folklore; there is the very remarkable role of the choir, and the incredible ability to evoke the magic of the Albaicín in Granada. The idea of the story came to Falla when he read, in the periodical "Blanco y Negro", a short poem of clear social content, written by Carlos Fernández-Shaw, which would become the heart of the libretto. ‘I am filled with emotion at the prospect of releasing this disc, because for all Spanish conductors Manuel de Falla’s La vida breve is the highpoint of Spanish opera and a fundamental work in our repertoire.’ (Juanjo Mena) © Chandos
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Opéra - Verschenen op 8 februari 2019 | Naxos

Hi-Res Booklet
Although he was born in Germany, Simon Mayr lived his entire adult life in Italy and it was in this country that he established himself as a superb composer. He has composed around sixty operas which have all been performed in the most prestigious transalpine theatres in Milan, Rome, Venice, Naples, Turin, and later in cities across Europe, from Vienna, Prague and Dresden to Munich and London. I Cherusci from 1808 tells the timeless story of the bond between father and daughter, of sacred duty and of sacrifice in a plot that is set in Germany in the era of ancient Rome, the Cherusci being a proud and belligerent Germanic nation from what is now Lower Saxony. There is a Prince Treuta, a Tamaro (sung by a soprano who is also the bard), a great druid Zarasto (no, not ZarastRo, but Zarasto) and a Tusnelda, all of whom are Germans singing as you would expect…in Italian! The music foreshadows the rise of Rossini with its sophisticated harmony and meticulous orchestration, and is far from early Bel Canto. This is a world premiere recording featuring brilliant vocals from Markus Schäfer and the ethereal voice of soprano Yvonne Prentki. Frankly, it makes you wonder why on earth Simon Mayr’s works aren’t performed more often on the world’s greatest stages as he is a truly fantastic composer from this era and is just as comfortable in the lyrical drama as he is in mischievous musical comedy. © SM/Qobuz
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Opéra - Verschenen op 16 november 2018 | PentaTone

Hi-Res Booklet

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