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Joyce DiDonato - Handel : Agrippina

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Handel : Agrippina

DiDonato, Fagioli, Lemieux, Il Pomo d'oro, Maxim Emelyanychev

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Handel spent many years in Italy during his youth and it was here that he composed his anti-heroic comedy, Agrippina, at the age of twenty-four, before eventually settling down in London. Its immoral, corrupt and decadent plots are presented as an inherent part of daily life for the ruling class of ancient Rome, along with their insatiable desire for political and sexual power. Handel was fascinated by Italian music and composed this particular opera in less than three weeks upon the request of a Venetian theatre, where it was then performed some twenty-seven nights in a row. Such was the enormity of the opera’s success that it firmly established the young composer’s reputation in Europe as a result. The score is bursting with emotion and has so many twists and turns that even the Venetians, who were used to these kinds of storylines, were blown away. The colourful libretto includes betrayals, assassinations, feigned love and lies of every kind – all of which are elements that the American film industry delights in incorporating into the films of today under the direction of someone like Martin Scorsese or the Coen brothers.

This studio recording was made in the Dolomites in May 2019, in conjunction with a European tour and features a dazzling cast led by the fierce Joyce DiDonato (Agrippina). This is DiDonato is at her very best, combining her vocals with marvellously conducted flourishes. She perfectly encapsulates the difficult, multi-faceted role by reflecting each one of Agrippina’s personality traits, from formidable intelligence and masterful manipulation to being a loving mother and wife. Joining her onstage is an exceptional cast that includes Franco Fagioli (Nerone), Jakub Józef Orliński (Ottone), Marie-Nicole Lemieux (Giunone) and Elsa Benoit (Poppea), along with the II Pomo d’Oro ensemble, feverishly conducted by Maxim Emelyanychev. This can only be described as a Handel grand cru. © François Hudry/Qobuz

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Handel : Agrippina

Joyce DiDonato

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Agrippina, HWV 6 (Georg Friedrich Händel)

1
Sinfonia
Joyce DiDonato
00:03:37

Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

2
Act 1: "Nerone, amato figlio" (Agrippina, Nerone)
Joyce DiDonato
00:02:42

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Franco Fagioli, Counter-Tenor (Nerone) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

3
Act 1: "Col saggio tuo consiglio" (Nerone)
Joyce DiDonato
00:04:54

Franco Fagioli, Counter-Tenor (Nerone) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

4
Act 1: "Per cosi grand'impresa" (Agrippina)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:34

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

5
Act 1: "A' cenni tuoi sovrani" (Pallante, Agrippina)
Joyce DiDonato
00:02:49

Andrea Mastroni, Bass (Pallante) - Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

6
Act 1: "La mia sorte fortunata" (Pallante)
Joyce DiDonato
00:03:35

Andrea Mastroni, Bass (Pallante) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

7
Act 1: "Or che Pallante è vinto" (Agrippina)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:17

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

8
Act 1: "Umile alle tue piante" (Agrippina, Narciso)
Joyce DiDonato
00:02:04

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Carlo Vistoli, Counter-Tenor (Narciso) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

9
Act 1: "Volo pronto" (Narciso)
Joyce DiDonato
00:03:26

Carlo Vistoli, Counter-Tenor (Narciso) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

10
Act 1: "Quanto fa, quanto puote" (Agrippina)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:25

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

11
Act 1: "L'alma mia fra le tempeste" (Agrippina)
Joyce DiDonato
00:02:37

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

12
Act 1: "Qual piacer" (Nerone)
Joyce DiDonato
00:02:23

Franco Fagioli, Counter-Tenor (Nerone) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

13
Act 1: "Amici, al sen vi stringo" (Nerone)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:20

Franco Fagioli, Counter-Tenor (Nerone) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

14
Act 1: "Ecco chi presto" (Pallante, Narciso, Nerone)
Joyce DiDonato
00:01:15

Andrea Mastroni, Bass (Pallante) - Carlo Vistoli, Counter-Tenor (Narciso) - Franco Fagioli, Counter-Tenor (Nerone) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

15
Act 1: "Voi, che dell'alta Roma" (Agrippina)
Joyce DiDonato
00:01:14

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

16
Act 1: "Il tuo figlio / La tua prole" (Agrippina, Nerone, Narciso, Pallante)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:40

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Franco Fagioli, Counter-Tenor (Nerone) - Carlo Vistoli, Counter-Tenor (Narciso) - Andrea Mastroni, Bass (Pallante) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

17
Act 1: "Ma qual di liete trombe" (Agrippina)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:15

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

18
Act 1 : "Allegrezza, allegrezza!" (Lesbo)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:32

Biagio Pizzuti, Baritone (Lesbo) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

19
Act 1: "Che sento !" (Lesbo, Pallante, Agrippina, Narciso, Nerone)
Joyce DiDonato
00:01:31

Biagio Pizzuti, Baritone (Lesbo) - Andrea Mastroni, Bass (Pallante) - Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Carlo Vistoli, Counter-Tenor (Narciso) - Franco Fagioli, Counter-Tenor (Nerone) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

20
Act 1: "Alle tue piante, o Augusta" (Ottone, Pallante, Agrippina, Narciso, Nerone)
Joyce DiDonato
00:02:52

Jakub Jozef Orlinski, Counter-Tenor (Ottone) - Andrea Mastroni, Bass (Pallante) - Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Carlo Vistoli, Counter-Tenor (Narciso) - Franco Fagioli, Counter-Tenor (Nerone) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

21
Act 1: "Augusta, amo Poppea" (Ottone, Agrippina)
Joyce DiDonato
00:01:03

Jakub Jozef Orlinski, Counter-Tenor (Ottone) - Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

22
Act 1: "Tu ben degno" (Agrippina)
Joyce DiDonato
00:03:53

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

23
Act 1: "L'ultima del gioir" (Ottone)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:26

Jakub Jozef Orlinski, Counter-Tenor (Ottone) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

24
Act 1: "Lusinghiera mia speranza" (Ottone)
Joyce DiDonato
00:03:55

Jakub Jozef Orlinski, Counter-Tenor (Ottone) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

25
Act 1: "Vaghe perle" (Poppea)
Joyce DiDonato
00:04:39

Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

26
Act 1: "Otton, Claudio, Nerone" (Poppea)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:17

Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

27
Act 1: "Signora, o mia signora !" (Lesbo, Poppea)
Joyce DiDonato
00:01:05

Biagio Pizzuti, Baritone (Lesbo) - Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

28
Act 1: "Di lieta nuova" (Lesbo, Agrippina, Poppea)
Joyce DiDonato
00:01:17

Biagio Pizzuti, Baritone (Lesbo) - Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

29
Act 1: "Perché invece di Claudio" (Poppea)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:20

Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

30
Act 1: "È un foco quel d'amore" (Poppea)
Joyce DiDonato
00:02:12

Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

31
Act 1: "(Ma qui Agrippina viene)" [Agrippina, Poppea]
Joyce DiDonato
00:03:04

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

32
Act 1: "Ho un non so che nel cor" (Agrippina)
Joyce DiDonato
00:02:10

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

33
Act 1: "Cieli, quai strani casi" (Poppea)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:46

Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

34
Act 1: "Non veggo alcun" (Lesbo)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:28

Biagio Pizzuti, Baritone (Lesbo) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

35
Act 1: "Pur ritorno a rimirarvi" (Claudio)
Joyce DiDonato
00:03:46

Luca Pisaroni, Bass (Claudio) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

36
Act 1: "Ma, o ciel, mesta e confusa" (Claudio, Poppea)
Joyce DiDonato
00:03:55

Luca Pisaroni, Bass (Claudio) - Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

37
Act 1: "Vieni, o cara" (Claudio)
Joyce DiDonato
00:01:34

Luca Pisaroni, Bass (Claudio) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

38
Act 1: "(Che mai farò ?)" [Poppea, Claudio]
Maxim Emelyanychev
00:00:15

Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Luca Pisaroni, Bass (Claudio) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

39
Act 1: "Signor, signor, presto" (Lesbo, Claudio, Poppea)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:29

Biagio Pizzuti, Baritone (Lesbo) - Luca Pisaroni, Bass (Claudio) - Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

40
Act 1: "E quando mai / Quando vorrai" (Poppea, Claudio, Lesbo)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:28

Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Luca Pisaroni, Bass (Claudio) - Biagio Pizzuti, Baritone (Lesbo) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

41
Act 1: "Pur al fin se n'andò" (Poppea)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:21

Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

42
Act 1: "O mia liberatrice" (Poppea, Agrippina)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:56

Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

43
Act 1: "Non ho cor che per amarti" (Agrippina)
Joyce DiDonato
00:05:14

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

44
Act 1: "Se Ottone m'ingannò" (Poppea)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:16

Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

45
Act 1: "Se giunge un dispetto" (Poppea)
Joyce DiDonato
00:02:14

Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

46
Act 2: "Dunque noi siam traditi" (Pallante, Narciso)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:55

Andrea Mastroni, Bass (Pallante) - Carlo Vistoli, Counter-Tenor (Narciso) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

47
Act 2: "Coronato il crin d'alloro"(Ottone)
Joyce DiDonato
00:03:11

Jakub Jozef Orlinski, Counter-Tenor (Ottone) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

48
Act 2: "Roma, più ch'il trionfo" (Pallante, Narciso, Ottone)
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:43

Andrea Mastroni, Bass (Pallante) - Carlo Vistoli, Counter-Tenor (Narciso) - Jakub Jozef Orlinski, Counter-Tenor (Ottone) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

49
Act 2: Prelude
Joyce DiDonato
00:00:26

Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

50
Act 2: "Ecco il superbo" (Agrippina, Poppea, Nerone, Ottone, Narciso)
Joyce DiDonato
00:01:12

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-soprano (Agrippina) - Elsa Benoit, Soprano (Poppea) - Franco Fagioli, Counter-Tenor (Nerone) - Jakub Jozef Orlinski, Counter-Tenor (Ottone) - Carlo Vistoli, Counter-Tenor (Narciso) - Il Pomo d'Oro - Maxim Emelyanychev, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer

© 2020 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

Album Description

Handel spent many years in Italy during his youth and it was here that he composed his anti-heroic comedy, Agrippina, at the age of twenty-four, before eventually settling down in London. Its immoral, corrupt and decadent plots are presented as an inherent part of daily life for the ruling class of ancient Rome, along with their insatiable desire for political and sexual power. Handel was fascinated by Italian music and composed this particular opera in less than three weeks upon the request of a Venetian theatre, where it was then performed some twenty-seven nights in a row. Such was the enormity of the opera’s success that it firmly established the young composer’s reputation in Europe as a result. The score is bursting with emotion and has so many twists and turns that even the Venetians, who were used to these kinds of storylines, were blown away. The colourful libretto includes betrayals, assassinations, feigned love and lies of every kind – all of which are elements that the American film industry delights in incorporating into the films of today under the direction of someone like Martin Scorsese or the Coen brothers.

This studio recording was made in the Dolomites in May 2019, in conjunction with a European tour and features a dazzling cast led by the fierce Joyce DiDonato (Agrippina). This is DiDonato is at her very best, combining her vocals with marvellously conducted flourishes. She perfectly encapsulates the difficult, multi-faceted role by reflecting each one of Agrippina’s personality traits, from formidable intelligence and masterful manipulation to being a loving mother and wife. Joining her onstage is an exceptional cast that includes Franco Fagioli (Nerone), Jakub Józef Orliński (Ottone), Marie-Nicole Lemieux (Giunone) and Elsa Benoit (Poppea), along with the II Pomo d’Oro ensemble, feverishly conducted by Maxim Emelyanychev. This can only be described as a Handel grand cru. © François Hudry/Qobuz

Details of original recording : Recorded 2019

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