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Full Operas - Released October 11, 2019 | Warner Classics

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Full Operas - Released August 2, 2019 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Yannick Nézet-Séguin’s saga on Mozart for Deutsche Grammophon continues: after The Clemency of Titus in 2018, it’s now time for The Magic Flute to pass under the Quebecois’ baton at the Festspielhaus in Baden-Baden. His direction breathes life into all the magic that is required for such a fairy-tale, Mozart’s final opera, and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe successfully communicates the opera’s majesty and depth, as heard in the radiant “Priest’s March”.When it comes to the singers, Christiane Karg is captivating in the role of Pamina, and Klaus Florian Vogt – who’s tonality is explosive here – embodies an innocent Tamino that is consistently dazzling. Rolando Villazón, Yannick Nézet-Séguin’s faithful companion in this Mozartian adventure (he has been present since the beginning of the recording of Don Giovanni), takes on the role of the bird catcher Papageno, written for a baritone voice; the former tenor is convincingly at one with the character’s personality. What’s more, despite their unequal distribution, the singers seem to be at home with this extraordinary singspiel.The orchestra whets our appetite with their clear love for playing together and invites us to dive once more into the discography of such a luxurious and dramatic work that is both humorous and spectacular. Nézet-Séguin’s orchestration is tight and the variation in the writing is that of a phenomenal musician. One thinks of Strauss’ Rosenkaalier for the sensual intermingling of voices in the final trio.The Magic Flute is almost masonic as the development of its spiritual storyline is akin to an initiation. Its enchanting atmosphere is typical to the German composer, much like the later Oberon by Weber. © Elsa Siffert/Qobuz
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Full Operas - Released June 7, 2019 | Aparté

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 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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Full Operas - Released May 17, 2019 | ICA Classics

Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or
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Full Operas - Released April 5, 2019 | Glossa

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With Les Indes galantes by Jean-Philippe Rameau, György Vashegyi – along with his Orfeo Orchestra and Purcell Choir – makes a further dazzling addition to their Glossa series of French dramatic masterpieces from the Baroque, and in the company of a luxurious line-up of vocal soloists. The version of this “ballet heroïque” – supplied with an anti-colonial, anti-clerical manifesto by librettist Louis Fuzelier – selected by Vashegyi is the 1761 revision, a mere decade or so before the irruption onto the Parisian musical scene of the likes of Gluck and Grétry. Rameau’s score had undergone frequent adjustments and improvements since its première a quarter of a century earlier, and the performing edition for this recording, prepared for the Rameau Opera Omnia by Sylvie Bouissou (who also provides a booklet essay here), offers a vision of this work which is more theatrical, fluid and concise than hitherto. Just in themselves, the names of Chantal Santon-Jeffery, Katherine Watson, Véronique Gens, Reinoud Van Mechelen, Jean-Sébastien Bou and Thomas Dolié (sharing out the dozen solo roles) augur well for a glorious exploration of the prologue and three entrées ahead. Recently, they have also, in conjunction with the Centre de Musique Baroque de Versailles, been working on questions of tempo and how to perform Rameau’s sequences as the composer intended. Vashegyi brings a consummate understanding of Rameau’s galante style to the proceedings, following two previous Ramellian Glossa outings (Naïs and Les Fêtes de Polymnie). © Glossa
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Full Operas - Released April 5, 2019 | CapriccioNR

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Full Operas - Released March 15, 2019 | CPO

Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
As a casual victim of circumstances – jealousy, denigration and low blows − Johann David Heinichen’s opera Flavio Crispo was never performed during its composer’s life; during repetitions in Dresden, insults flew back and forth between him and some Italian singers, which led the piece to be removed from the programme and never completed. Although in reality, only a few pages of music are missing from the integral score... Consequently, this is the first discographic publication of the opera, with the complete music composed in 1720. It reveals a composer at ease in both the sharp and complex language of Germanic tradition, and the formal and vocal freedom of Italian opera – which Heinichen had studied closely during a long stay in Venice. There, he met the Elector of Saxony (Frederick Augustus II of Saxony) and future King of Poland (Augustus III of Poland), who hired him to his court in Dresden, at the time one of the largest hubs in European culture. Heinichen soon took up the torch from Antonio Lotti who had composed Italian operas for the court of Dresden for a few years, and his Flavio Crispo was meant to be his contribution to the genre. But unlike Lotti, Heinichen called upon a highly-flavoured orchestra: horns, oboes, flutes, in addition to strings and continuo, and winds to which he gives a fair amount of highly-virtuosic movements. Unfortunately for the composer, he was never able to hear his masterpiece, as the King of Poland dismissed the few Italian singers who had risen up against the partition under a futile pretence; no one else was able to sing these roles, and the score fell into obscurity. This was until it was rediscovered and showcased by the ensemble Il Gusto Barocco and its music director Jörg Halubek, in a 2015 live recording. At long last, Herr Heinichen! © SM/Qobuz
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Full Operas - Released March 8, 2019 | LSO Live

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“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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Full Operas - Released January 11, 2019 | Universal Music Australia Pty. Ltd.

Distinctions 5 de Diapason
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Full Operas - Released November 16, 2018 | naïve classique

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Gramophone Editor's Choice - Choc de Classica
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Full Operas - Released November 16, 2018 | Dynamic

Distinctions 5 de Diapason
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Full Operas - Released November 9, 2018 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 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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Full Operas - Released November 9, 2018 | Naxos

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Full Operas - Released November 2, 2018 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Gramophone Editor's Choice - 5 étoiles de Classica
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Full Operas - Released November 2, 2018 | Arcana

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason
Alessandro Stradella’s place in the annals of the history of music is not only due to the adventurous circumstances that marked his brief existence, but also to the reputation as a opera composer he has acquired since the 18th century. Inaccessible for many decades to specialists and scholars, La Doriclea is definitely the least known of all Stradella’s operas. However, it constitutes a particularly significant chapter in his overall output: composed in Rome during the early 1670s, to our knowledge La Doriclea represents the first opera entirely composed by Stradella. From the dramatic point of view, La Doriclea belongs to the comedy of intrigue genre typical of the 17th century Spanish theatre tradition. Refined and amusing, it alternates touching lamentos with irresistibly comic scenes, in which the character of Giraldo, a veritable precursor of the basso buffo, allows us to glimpse Rossinian atmospheres. Emőke Baráth (Doriclea) and Xavier Sabata (Fidalbo) alongside Giuseppina Bridelli (Lucinda) and Luca Cervoni (Celindo) and the comic couple of Delfina (Gabriella Martellacci) and Giraldo (Riccardo Novaro) bring a complex and fascinating role-playing game to life. This world premiere release of La Doriclea is a major achievement for "The Stradella Project", which here reaches its fifth volume. © Arcana
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Full Operas - Released October 12, 2018 | B Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Gramophone Editor's Choice - 5 étoiles de Classica
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Full Operas - Released September 14, 2018 | Bru Zane

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Choc de Classica
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Full Operas - Released September 14, 2018 | Naxos

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Full Operas - Released September 7, 2018 | CPO

Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason
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Full Operas - Released August 31, 2018 | Aparté

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik - Preis der deutschen Schallplattenkritik