Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

This page lists all recordings of L'Orfeo, by Claudio Giovanni Antonio Monteverdi (1567-1643) on CD, SACD, DVD, Blu-ray & download (MP3 & FLAC). Generally, more recent releases are listed first, but with priority given to those that are in stock.


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All recordings

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Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Ian Bostridge (Orfeo), Natalie Dessay (La Musica), Patrizia Ciofi (Euridice), Véronique Gens (Proserpina), Alice Coote (Messaggiera), Sonia Prina (Speranza), Carolyn Sampson (Ninfa), Paul Agnew (Eco/Pastore), Christopher Maltman (Apollo/Pastore), Lorenzo Regazzo (Plutone), Mario Luperi (Caronte), Pascal Bertin, Richard Burkhard (Pastori)

Le Concert d'Astrée, European Voices, Emmanuelle Haïm

Monteverdi’s retelling of the story of Orpheus and Eurydice, composed for the court of Mantua, is the earliest opera to hold a firm place in the repertoire. Emmanuelle Haïm directs a full-blooded performance with star singers whose artistry is as valid here – in a groundbreaking Renaissance score – as in music of later eras: Ian Bostridge, Patrizia Ciofi, Natalie Dessay, Carolyn Sampson, Véronique Gens, Alice Coote, Sonia Prina, Christopher Maltman and Lorenzo Regazzo.

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Erato - The Home of Opera - 9029593486

(CD - 2 discs)


In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Montserrat Figueras (La Musica), Furio Zanasi (Orfeo), Arianna Savall (Euridice), Sara Mingardo (Messaggiera), Cécile van de Sant (Speranza), Antonio Abete (Caronte), Adriana Fernández (Proserpina), Daniele Carnovich (Plutone), Fulvio Bettini (Apollo), Mercedes Hernández (Ninfa), Marília Vargas (Ninfa), Gerd Türk (Pastore & Eco), Francesc Garrigosa (Pastore & Spirito), Carlos Mena (Pastore) & Iván García (Pastore & Spirito)

La Capella Reial de Catalunya & Le Concert des Nations, Jordi Savall

This live recording made on January 31st, 2002 at the Liceu Theatre in Barcelona is already a cornerstone of any Monteverdi discography. It has been released on DVD by Opus Arte (but is now unavailable in most countries and reaches pretty high scores on the market place...), with a slightly different editing. This new and original multichannel mastering reveals the full scale of the inspiration of Jordi Savall and his ensembles, as well as the soloists, who include the late Montserrat Figueras, Furio Zanasi and Sara Mingardo.

“The singing and playing is of a very high standard.” Early Music Review, 1st July 2015

“This is an opulent L’Orfeo rich in drama and contrast; the complete musico-dramatic article, utterly engrossing. Savall achieves a nigh-pefect balance between ravishing resonance and sound on the one hand, and gripping, pacey narrative on the other … a sumptuous production that must have been the ticket of the year.” Early Music Today, March/May 2016

“Savall's ideas may not satisfy everyone, but there's never a hint of formulaic complacency, and this live performance is an engaging alternative view to experience alongside the best studio versions.” Gramophone Magazine, September 2015

“Savall’s performance is bold and full-bodied, especially in the warm choral singing and orchestral playing. The soloists are more variable, often placed far back in the sonic picture...the finest singing is from Sara Mingardo as a plangent Messenger.” The Observer, 14th June 2015 ***

Super Audio CD


Hybrid Multi-channel

Alia Vox - AVSA9911

(SACD - 2 discs)


(also available to download from $20.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

John Mark Ainsley, Brigitte Balleys, Michael Chance, David Cordier, Mario Luperi, Russell Smythe

Tragicomedia and Concerto Palatino, Stephen Stubbs (conductor) & Pierre Audi (director)

Running time: 140 minutes / Subtitles: EN/FR/DE/ES/IT/NL

“Simply the most compelling account of L'Orfeo yet produced...John Mark Ainsley is simply superb as Orfeo…” BBC Music Magazine

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

Opus Arte - The Essential Opera Collection - OAMO6007D

(DVD Video - 2 discs)


In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

William Matteuzzi (Orfeo), Sylva Pozzer (La Musica/Euridice), Sara Mingardo (La Messaggiera/Proserpina), Angela Bucci (La Speranza), Paolo Dal Dosso (Caronte), Loris Bertolo (Plutone), Gian Paolo Fagotto (Apollo)

Ensemble Instrumental, Sergio Vartolo

Reissue in the Brilliant Classics Opera Collection of this excellent “HIP” performance of Monteverdi’s ever popular L’Orfeo, history’s first real opera. Soloists include the crème of Baroque Voices: the great Sara Mingardo, Sylvia Pozzer, Gabriella Martellacci, Gianpaolo Fagotto and the inspiring and historically based direction of Sergio Vartolo.

All libretti are available on

Narrating the famous tale of the Thracian singer Orpheus and his quest to the underworld to bring his wife, Euridice, back to the land of the living, Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo is one of the most enduringly popular of all operatic works.

Numerous performances continue to be staged to this day, and there are no signs of fading appreciation for the work, even four centuries after its first performance (in 1607). Sergio Vartolo’s fantastic, historically-informed interpretation presents an ideal opportunity for listeners to explore the reasons behind this opera’s vast and undiminishing popularity.

Monteverdi’s famed skill for giving full expression to a text’s meaning is particularly clear – shown, for example, in his careful deployment of dissonance for emotional impact, and in the immensely moving third-act aria. Beyond this, however, L’Orfeo’s ability to enthral audiences may lie in its celebration of the power and beauty of music; from the opening Prologue, where Music appears onstage to extol her virtues, to Orpheus’s ability to achieve the unthinkable and gain access to the underworld through his talent as a singer, music is the driving force of the opera’s action. This fantastic recording reveals the genius of Monteverdi’s work fully, featuring an exemplary and authentic interpretation that is the result of Sergio Vartolo’s thorough study of the score. Essential listening for any serious fans of opera, this set is also an excellent starting-point for exploring the music of Monteverdi, who has been dubbed the ‘creator of modern music’.

“Ably delivered by Itailan singers and players, but mannered effects - self-conscious musical direction, slow tempos - too often devalue idiomatic virtues.” BBC Music Magazine, September 2012 **

“The singing is on a high level with a very good chorus and first class contributions from the many secondary singers. Sylvia Pozzer who sings Musica as well as Euridice, is lovely and fresh voiced...[Matteuzzi] is an excellent Orfeo, expressive and able to vary his tone exquisitely...[Mingardo] sings gloriously in Act IV” MusicWeb International, 10th May 2013

Brilliant Classics Opera Collection - 94373BR

(CD - 2 discs)


(also available to download from $20.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Recorded live at La Teatro alla Scala 21st & 23rd December 2009

Georg Nigl (Orfeo), Roberta Invernizzi (Euridice), Sara Mingardo (Messaggera), Sara Mingardo (Speranza), Luigi De Donato (Caronte), Raffaella Milanesi (Proserpina), Giovanni Battista Parodi (Plutone), Roberta Invernezzi (Eco), Furio Zanasi (Apollo) & Nicola Strada (Solo Dancer)

Orchestra of Teatro alla Scala & Concerto Italiano (Basso continuo), Rinaldo Alessandrini (conductor) & Robert Wilson (director)

Monteverdi’s seminal first opera tells the dramatic story from Ovid’s Metamorphoses of the descent of Orfeo (Georg Nigl) into the underworld to recover his beloved wife Euridice (Roberta Invernizzi), who has died from a snake bite. In a new production for La Scala, based on a painting by Titian and directed by Robert Wilson, the opera receives a powerful and inspiring performance from a fine cast, the Orchestra of Teatro alla Scala and Concerto Italiano under the much-admired Italian early music specialist, Rinaldo Alessandrini. Filmed in High Definition and recorded in true surround sound.

‘Robert Wilson meets Monteverdi with successful results’ The Opera Critic

Extra features:

Cast Gallery

Illustrated Synopsis

Running time 1 hours 56 mins

Region Code All regions

Picture format 1080i High Definition / 16:9

Sound format 5.1(5.0) DTS

Menu languages EN

Subtitles EN/FR/DE/ES/IT

“Director Robert Wilson takes his inspiration from a Titian painting, Venus with Eros and an Organist, and delivers a series of starkly-lit tableaux - strong geometric shapes framing the highly stylised gestures of the cast. The drama comes from Alessandrini's edition and the bite and brilliance of the La Scala orchestra, and Concerto Italiano's inventive continuo section.” BBC Music Magazine, April 2011 ****

“the singers are drawn from the top drawer of Baroque practice...Wilson's concept of abstraction - both visual and dramatic - never seems to work with real live performers. But there's still a great deal of musical pleasure to be had from the singers and Rinaldo Alessandrini's conducting.” Classic FM Magazine, May 2011 ***

“Beautifully flimed in Milan, this DVD shows how well Wilson's minimalist productions can take to the small screen...Alessandrini directs an authentically sized La Scala orchestra in playing that is at once historically informed and always alive...Georg Nigl, previously a Wozzeck at La Scala, sings with much beauty of voice.” Gramophone Magazine, July 2011

“I've never heard [the separation scene] more effectively sung by either Orfeo or Euridice...[Nigl] animates the recitatives by putting the words and their rhetorical structures first...In short, this is a wonderfully satisfying performance, featuring one of the finest Orfeos on disc, and a production which suits the needs of both the large-scale theatre and the small screen equally well.” International Record Review, March 2011

“This bears all Wilson's trademark stylisations with slow movement and hand gestures full of meaning casting their hypnotic spell. The lighting is also crucial to Wilson's approach. The singing is enthusiastic with Georg Nigl a solid Orpheus, Roberta Invernizzi a poignant Eurydice and Sara Mingardo an outstanding Messenger.” Opera Now, Summer 2011

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Opus Arte La Scala Collection - OABD7080D



In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

CD Book

Laurence Dale (Orfeo), Efrat Ben-Nun (Euridice/La Musica), Jennifer Larmore (Messaggiera), Paul Gérimon (Caronte), Harry Peeters (Plutone), Bernarda Fink (Proserpina), Nicolas Rivenq (Apollo), Andreas Scholl (Speranza)

Concerto Vocale, René Jacobs

"Imaginative, involving,and beautifully recorded." *** CD OF THE MONTH, OPERA NOW , JANUARY 1996

Harmonia Mundi Monteverdi Opera Edition - HML5901553/54

(CD - 2 discs)


(also available to download from $13.75)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Jordi Savall directs Le Concert des Nations, La Capella Reial de Catalunya and the leading soloists of early opera in a beautiful period production of Monteverdi's favola in musica staged at Barcelona's Gran Teatre del Liceu in 2002. Gilbert Deflo's stage direction reflects the sublime art and imagery found in Mantua's Palazzo Ducale, with its famous Hall of Mirrors, where the opera was first performed in 1607.

Region Code: All regions

Picture format: 16:9

Sound format: dts Surround / LPCM Stereo

Running time: 140 mins

Menu languages: GB

Subtitle languages: GB only


L' Orfeo in Mantua - Stage director Gilbert Deflo, in Mantua's Palazzo Ducale, reveals the inspiration behind his staging of L'Orfeo

Subtitles: PAL - English, French, German, Spanish
NTSC - English

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

Opus Arte - OA0843D

(DVD Video)


In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Monteverdi: L’Orfeo

Monteverdi: L’Orfeo



German version by Carl Orff (1895-1982)

Lamento d'Arianna 'Lasciatemi morire'


Raymond Wolansky, Ingeborg Bremert, Lucretia West, Ernst Wiemann, Otto Arneth

Südfunkchor Stuttgart, Radiosinfonieorchester Stuttgart, Ferdinand Leitner

Claudio Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo first Performed in 1607 was composed by one of the most respected musicians in Northern Italy and is thought to be the first full opera ever performed. This piece combined the musical interludes with the drama itself creating an exciting new Genre with new possibilities for composers across the globe.

Profil Medien - PH13029



(also available to download from $10.00)

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days. (Available now to download.)

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Charles Daniels (Orfeo), Faye Newton (Euridice), Emily Van Evera (Messaggiera), Clare Wilkinson (Speranza/Proserpina), Curtis Streetman (Caronte), Christopher Purves (Plutone), Anna Dennis (Ninfa), Guy Pelc (Apollo), Rodrigo del Pozo, Simon Wall, Gareth Morrell Robert Macdonald (Pastori), Richard Latham, Gareth Morrell, Curtis Streetman, (Spiriti infernali)

Taverner Consort & Players, Andrew Parrott

Celebrating their 40th anniversary, Andrew Parrott and his Taverner Consort & Players offer a magnificent recording of the world's first operatic masterpiece, Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo. Befitting such an outstanding recording, the 2-CD set is luxuriously packaged with extensive notes and the complete libretto with English translations in a 52-page booklet.

Andrew Parrott and the Taverner Consort & Players celebrate their 40th anniversary with a marvellous recording of the world's first operatic masterpiece, Monteverdi's L’Orfeo. As can be expected from Andrew Parrott, who has been at the centre of the early and baroque music scene for over four decades, his meticulous research results in a performance and stylistic approach that brings a fresh perspective to the myth of love lost and found through the art of music. His scholarship, combined with the collaborative nature of the Taverners, translates into a performance brought to life by the finest singers and instrumentalists in the early music world, including tenor Charles Daniels who is the superb Orfeo.

“with Charles Daniels and Faye Newton superb as Orfeo and Euridice, and sensual singing and playing, this is the most beguiling Monteverdi opera recording for years.” The Times, 18th May 2013 *****

“Charles Daniels gives a sensitive and intimate portrayal of the part of Orfeo. Under Parrott’s direction, the first-rate team of instrumentalists further enrich our experience in a shapely reading of a still lovely, still fresh masterpiece.” Sunday Times, 19th May 2013

“the Avie set favours near-vibrato-less singers of ambiguous fach - proper voices indeed (not the vernacular singing occasionally heard in Monteverdi) but not necessarily ones you'd typically hear in modern opera houses...More than usual, instrumentalists are active story-telling participants.” Gramophone Magazine, June 2013

“This new version of Monteverdi's Orfeo is thoroughly researched and reimagined...a gentle, lyrical vision of a miraculous opera.” The Observer, 26th May 2013

“the presentation is faithful to the original small-scale salon performances, which were more like poetic oratorios than grand opera. Thus, colourful singing is eschewed in favour of an almost spoken-sung recitative, with comparatively undemonstrative accompaniment from sparse instruments” The Independent, 24th May 2013 ****

“We can hear Parrott's approach most clearly in Orfeo himself...Daniels reserves his emotional outbursts for a very few key moments...In the same vein, Emily van Evera does the tricky Messenger scene with chilling simplicity...'Possente spirto' - the highlight of the work - is a triumph...I'm not sure whether I'm more impressed by [Daniels's] techique of his formidable subtlety.” International Record Review, July/August 2013

“Daniels is magnificent in the title role - technically brilliant...impassioned...and lyrically supple...The rest of the cast is also good...Faye Newton is a pure and effective Euridice...As one may expect from Andrew Parrott, the instruments are very adroitly deployed and controlled.” BBC Music Magazine, September 2013 ****

BBC Music Magazine

Opera Choice - September 2013

Avie - AV2278

(CD - 2 discs)


(also available to download from $20.00)

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days. (Available now to download.)

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Ian Bostridge (Orfeo), Natalie Dessay (La Musica), Patrizia Ciofi (Euridice), Véronique Gens (Proserpina), Alice Coote (Messaggiera), Sonia Prina (Speranza), Carolyn Sampson (Ninfa), Paul Agnew (Eco/Pastore), Christopher Maltman (Apollo/Pastore), Lorenzo Regazzo (Plutone), Mario Luperi (Caronte), Pascal Bertin, Richard Burkhard (Pastori)

Le Concert d'Astrée, Emmanuelle Haïm

Recording Country: France

Recording Location: 15-22 January 2003. Eglise Notre Dame du Liban, Paris.

Mix Date: 22 Jan 2003

Executive Producer: Alain Lanceron

Producer & Editor: Daniel Zalay

Balance Engineer: Jean Chatauret (Musica Numeris)

Erato The Opera Series - 9482532

Download only from $15.00

Available now to download.


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