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Danielle de Niese - Handel Arias
The debut solo recording from Danielle de Niese, who became a star overnight after her stunning 'all singing, all dancing' performance as Cleopatra in Handel's Giulio Cesare at Glyndebourne in 2005. Danielle signs a selection of Handel arias from both famous and lesser-known works which showcase perfectly her extraordinary dramatic range and vocal abilities.
“De Niese demonstrates good technical skills and a keen sense of character, but above all there's a strong artistic personality at work that enables her to make each statement her own.” BBC Music Magazine, March 2008 ****
“When it comes to sorceresses, de Niese is splendid. The two arias for Medea in Teseo are well contrasted. "Dolce riposo" is a duet for voice and oboe over a pulsating string accompaniment, sung with an affecting gentleness, while "O stringerò nel' sen" is a fiery expression of jealousy. ” Gramophone Magazine, June 2008
“Her singing is utterly delectable and completely assured.” The New York Times
“De Niese can certainly "sell" a number. She makes each of these arias an emotional journey, heightening the expression when the first section is repeated. Semele's "Myself I Shall Adore" becomes increasingly, and delightfully, dizzy, with narcissistic flights of ornamentation, while at the opposite end of the spectrum she suggests a new intensity of grief towards the end of Ginevra's "Il mio crudel martoro" ( Ariodante ), with a "soured" colouring on the key word "moro" - dying.
What makes me faintly uneasy is the less than even quality of de Niese's voice and her reluctance to sing either a true legato or a true pianissimo, though the ultra-close miking must take some of the blame here. Her bright, slender soprano, with its distinctive quick vibrato, has an attractive hint of smokiness in the middle register. Higher up, it can become thin and squally - I noticed this especially in her no-holds-barred performances of Cleopatra's "Da tempeste" and Morgana's "Tornami a vagheggiar" ( Alcina ).
Yet for all her vocal imperfections, De Niese brings each of these characters to vivid life.” The Times, 10th May 2008
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Handel - Arias
Handel, a child of his time, was fascinated by the poignant human dramas and emotions exemplified by Greek and Roman classical myths, dramas, and poetry. A theatre composer to his very bones, he devoted himself to the portrayal of human psychology. He had a special interest in those moments when the human psyche is at its most vulnerable: moments of indecision, struggle, despair, fury, abandonment, betrayal, unhappy love, conflict with friends, enemies, and fate, or longing for the oblivion of death.
The oboe was an instrument especially beloved by Händel. It is the unifying element in the anthology of arias and cantatas recorded here.
Bart Schneemann: Handel, that master creator of goosebumps, can juggle emotions with the greatest of ease; he can make you happy, melancholy, resigned, exuberant. A composer who can make two completely different beings, an oboe and a soprano, fall in love, is one of the great ones.
Johannette Zomer: After my first collaboration with Bart (Blake Songs by Vaughan Williams, ccs 18598 ), what struck me was the way our two instruments, oboe and voice, completely fused together. Bart’s way of making music is so pure, so honest, that making music with him in these dialogue-arias raises my singing to a whole new level.
“It is refreshing to hear Zomer's less 'operatic' voice, with plenty of early music expertise, tackling arias with emotional affinity and stylish eloquence. Schneemann's oboe-playing is an ideally lyrical partner in Berenice's showpiece...Zomer's recital offers plenty to enjoy.” Gramophone Magazine, April 2010
Usually despatched in 4 - 5 working days.
Baroque Voices 26 - Handel: Opera Seria
An anthology devoted to the Handelian prima donna that features arias composed over more than two decades for some of the greatest divas of the time. Sandrine Piau’s recital, recorded in 2004, illustrates the rich hedonism of Handel’s vocal style.
Usually despatched in 3 - 4 working days.
Handel - Opera Seria
“Sandrine Piau and Christophe Rousset have been consistently stylish and perceptive Handelians together. Their musical flair and dramatic intelligence is marvellously captured here, and they have chosen arias that explore the full range of Handel's genius.
The experience starts with the spectacular 'Scoglio d'immota fronte', and the subsequent sequence weaves through wonderful contrasts.
It's hard to capture the full dramatic sense and vivid personality of Handel's opera characters in a studio recital, yet they hit the bullseye every time, bringing out Cleopatra's despair, Rodelinda's eloquent grief for her apparently deceased husband, the heartbroken sorceress Melissa in Amadigi di Gaula, Deidamia's distress at losing Achilles to the Trojan war, and Partenope's gorgeous charisma.
Although some da capo sections stray a little too far from Handel's notation for the comfort of scholars, they all enhance the drama of the text, and each cadenza, showing panache and taste, is a breath of fresh air. The playing of Les Talens Lyriques is a model of clarity, vitality and theatrical wit. It was an inspired decision to close the recital with the sublime understatement of 'Son qual stanco', featuring a heartbreaking cello solo by Atsushi Sakaï. Rousset and Piau achieve the perfect synthesis of elegance, extravagance and emotion. This is may be the finest recital of Handel arias ever recorded.” Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010
(also available to download from $10.50)
Usually despatched in 3 - 4 working days. (Available now to download.)
Handel - Opera Arias
Second Overture to Almira in G minor
Vedrai s'a tuo dispetto (Almira Act III)
Perché viva il caro sposo (from Rodrigo)
Vo' far guerra (from Rinaldo)
Overture to Silla
Ah! spietato (from Amadigi di Gaula)
Desterò dall'empia dite (from Amadigi di Gaula)
V' adoro, pupille (from Giulio Cesare)
Overture to Tamerlano
Cor di padre (from Tamerlano)
Ombre piante, urne funeste (from Rodelinda)
March (Scipione, Act I)
Scoglio d'immota fronte (from Scipione)
Overture to Alessandro
Sinfonia Act 1 (Alessandro)
Che vidi? Che mirai! (from Alessandro)
No, più soffrir non voglio (from Alessandro)
Placa l’alma (Alessandro)
Solitudine amate (from Alessandro)
Aure, fonti (from Alessandro)
Pur troppo veggio (from Alessandro)
Che tirannia d’amor! (from Alessandro)
Svanisci oh reo timore (from Alessandro)
Dica il falso (from Alessandro)
Il ritratto d’Admeto (from Admeto)
La sorte mia vacilla (from Admeto)
Quest’è dunque la fede (from Admeto)
Vedrò fra poco (Admeto, re di Tessaglia)
Morte vieni (from Riccardo primo, re d’Inghilterra)
A me nel mio rossore (from Riccardo Primo, re d’Inghilterra)
Quando non vede (from Riccardo Primo)
A costei, che dirò? (from Siroe, re di Persia)
L’aura non sempre (from Siroe, re di Persia)
Si diversi sembiante (from Siroe, re di Persia)
Non vi piacque, ingiusti dei (from Siroe, re di Persia)
E dove, e dove mai (Tolomeo, re di Egitto)
Fonti amiche (from Tolomeo, re di Egitto)
Ti pentirai, crudel (Tolomeo, re di Egitto)
Overture to Lotario
Scherza in mar (from Lotario)
Io ti levo (Partenope Act I)
Caro padre (from Ezio)
Dite pace (from Sosarme)
Vorrei, né pur saprei (from Sosarme)
Son qual stanco pellegrino (from Arianna in Creta)
Ah! Ruggiero (from Alcina)
Chi t'intende? (from Berenice)
Overture to Deidamia
M'ai resa infelice (from Deidamia)
3 compact discs from CDA66860, CDA66950, CDA67128
“‘It is difficult to pick out a particular highlight, there are so many of them’ (Classic CD) ‘A splendidly enjoyable disc. Kirkby is in top-notch form’ (Hi-Fi News) ‘This CD is appealing on every plane. It’s certainly one of my discs for 1997’ (Gramophone) ‘Right on cue for the bull market in Handel operatic stock, The Rival Queens conquer all before them. A right royal feast!’ (Classic CD) ‘The voices contrast well, and their owners, as well as The Brandenburg Consort, perform this wonderful music with style and an intense sense of affection’ (BBC Music Magazine) ‘Immensely enjoyable’ (Goldberg) ‘A delight … this is singing of brilliance’ (Fanfare, USA) ‘Kirkby’s talent for matching brilliant coloratura with dramatic urgency remains unparalleled … a compelling interpretation of rarely heard masterpieces, this recording is the ideal present for anyone open to Handel’s dramatic compositions” International Record Review
In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.
The Queen: Renata Tebaldi
Early Decca & Cetra recs 1949-50; Decca Evergreen 1955-1958; The Great Opera Duets 1951-1960
L'altra notte in fondo al mare (from Mefistofele)
Ebben? Ne andrò lontana (from La Wally)
Ecco: respiro appena. Io son l'umile ancella (from Adriana Lecouvreur)
Vicino a te (from Andrea Chénier)
Il était un roi de Thule... Ah! je ris (from Faust)
Sung in Italian as 'Come vorrei saper... C'era un re... Ah, E' strano poter'
Piangerò la sorte mia (from Giulio Cesare)
Ah! spietato (from Amadigi di Gaula)
Giunse alfin il momento... Deh, vieni, non tardar… (from Le nozze di Figaro)
Un bel di vedremo (from Madama Butterfly)
In quelle trine morbide (from Manon Lescaut)
Vissi d'arte (from Tosca)
Si, mi chiamano Mimi (from La Bohème)
Donde lieta usci (from La Bohème)
Sono andati? Fingevo di dormire (from La Bohème)
Viene la sera (from Madama Butterfly)
Mario! Mario! Mario! ...Son qui! ... Mia gelosa! (from Tosca)
Tu che di gel sei cinta (from Turandot)
Grazie sorelle (from Cecilia)
S'allontanano alfine...Selva opaca (from Guglielmo Tell)
Chi vuole innamorarsi (from Il Flavio)
Caldo Sangue (from Sedecia Re di Gerusalemme)
Noch uzh minula (from Eugene Onegin)
Sung in Italian
Tacea la notte (from Il Trovatore)
Ritorna vincitor! (from Aida)
Teneste la promessa...Addio, del passato (from La Traviata)
O patria mia (from Aida)
Era più calmo? (from Otello)
Mia madre aveva...Piangea cantando...Ave Maria (from Otello)
Son giunta … Madre, pietosa Vergine (from La Forza del Destino)
Pace, pace mio Dio! (from La forza del destino)
D'amor sull'ali rosee (from Il Trovatore)
Presago il core della tua condonna (from Aida)
Giá nella notte densa (from Otello)
Prendi, quest'è l'immagine (from La Traviata)
Renata Tebaldi (soprano)
Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Orchestra Sinfonica RAI Milano, Orchestra of the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, Orchestre du Grand Théatre de Genève, Orchesrta of the Chicago Lyric Opera, Wiener Philharmoniker, Alberto Erede, Nino Sanzogno, Georg Solti, Herbert von Karajan, Francesco Molinari-Pradelli, Gianandrea Gavazzeni
Usually despatched in 8 - 10 working days.