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Airs, Overtures & Concerti
A stunning recital disc which helped establish Scholl as the first countertenor superstar. The sound is outstanding, the voice perfectly balanced, the orchestral sonorities richly detailed and displaying an impressive tonal depth. In short, the complete artist and the ideal recording.
“Scholl at his inimitable best: superbly accomplished and fully inside each character in turn.” BBC Music Magazine
“Scholl is pre-eminent among today's countertenors for the fine quality, roundness and power of his voice as well as for the artistry of its usage. In this new recital, the sheer opulence of tone impresses afresh, and its firmness make the more dramatic vibrancy of Daniel's seem somewhat loosely focused... the recitative in Admento shudders with the hopelessness of 'omai tornate', and, in the solo from Rodelinda, Bertardio confronts his own epitaph with convincing emotion.” Gramophone Magazine
“The highlights are the Serse, Alcina and Cesare arias: Handel doesn't come lovelier than this.” Sunday Times
“Here is another guaranteed hit for this justifiably acclaimed German countertenor.” The Observer
“Handel recitals do not come much better than this... Glorious music, superlative singing.” The Telegraph
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Handel: Opera Arias
The contralto Nathalie Stutzmann was not yet 30 years of age when she made this extraordinarily dramatic recording of arias from Handel’s Italian operas. It showcases her impressive depth of tone, a voice of tremendous – indeed, in these days, almost unrivalled – projection that inevitably brings to mind the great contraltos of yore from Clara Butt to Marian Anderson.
Stutzmann was, and remains, however, an entirely modern artist, who has continued to innovate in her choice of repertoire and musical partners. Many of these arias were written for castrati and countertenors, who nonetheless sang, we are led to believe, with quite a different, more earthy timbre, than we are accustomed to hear from countertenors today.
In that sense Stutzmann’s assumption of these often powerfully dramatic scenes of love and rage and despair presents an intriguing throwback to the age when they were first performed, especially when, as here, she is accompanied by a period-instrument band who are themselves soaked in Handel’s idiom.
“a thrilling recital of plangent and heroic arias” BBC Music Magazine, March 2012 *****
“[The recital] begins superbly, leaping in with the magnificent ‘Fammi combattere’, sung here in a truly grand manner – as indeed everything is, for Stutzmann has a commanding style and a tremendous
technique, allied to a very powerful contralto. She is an exceptionally rhythmic singer, and produces immense fire in the quick numbers, among them the big outburst from Partenope, ‘Furibondo’, and the first of the two from
Floridante, as well as parts of the Mad Scene from Orlando, in which too, she is very successful at conveying, musically, the character’s slipping into madness through her softening of the voice.” Gramophone Magazine, March 1993
“what we hear on this disc is a still very young singer. Her distinctive dark timbre and fluent technique were already her hallmarks...There is glorious singing throughout the recital and Roy Goodman draws vivacious and stylish playing from the excellent Hanover Band. It is great to have this disc available again. Handel lovers should place their orders at once.” MusicWeb International, May 2012
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Handel - Affetti Barocchi
Arias for Senesino
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