This disc presents three vocal pieces for soprano with oboe and basso continuo, interspersed between four trio sonatas for 2 oboes & basso continuo.The first cantata "Mi palpita il cor" was written in England - there are four existing variants, but this presented here is probably the earliest, the date given here as 1717. The theme is typically pastoral, with the singer's amorous affliction, the sorrow and hope of being in love with Chloris. The second vocal piece "Meine Seele hort im Sehen" is one of Handel's nine German da capo arias written around 1724/25 which were never published; they were songs of spiritual devotion rejoicing in God's creation as manifested in the beauty of nature, and not intended for concert performance.
Belshazzar (HWV 61) is an oratorio by George Frideric Handel. The libretto was by Charles Jennens, and Handel abridged it considerably. Jennens' libretto was based on the Biblical account of the fall of Babylon at the hands of Cyrus the Great and the subsequent freeing of the Jewish nation, as found in the Book of Daniel.
Handel composed Belshazzar in the late Summer of 1744 concurrently with Hercules, during a time that Winton Dean calls "the peak of Handel's creative life".The work premiered the following Lenten season on 27 March 1745 at the King's Theatre, London.The work fell into neglect after Handel's death, with revivals of the work occurring in the United Kingdom in 1847, 1848 and 1873.With the revival of interest in Baroque music and historically informed musical performance since the 1960s, Belsahzzar receives performances in concert form today and is also sometimes fully staged as an opera.
This is a reissue of a recording from 1993 (re-released a few years ago and deleted in 2003), recently remastered for SACD, and it really impresses with a renewed presence and impact, even on standard CD playback. As I said in my original review, Savall's reading "comes as close as these things can to placing us in the best seat in the house and treats us to a rare experience: the sensation of believing we're hearing a ruggedly familiar piece for the first time. Literally bursting with energy, scintillating strings, blazing horns, and incisive winds, and never boring even for one second, these performances give you Handel at his most exciting." If you have the earlier release, you probably don't need this one–unless you now own an SACD system–but it does deserve a place in every Handel collection, not only for the unsurpassed performances, but also for the effect of Savall's several decidedly "non-standard" tempos(!), and of course for the phenomenal sound, which now must have reached its ultimate realism in this format.
Ever the recycler, Handel cobbled together Oreste from parts of pre-existing scores for his 1734 season at Covent Garden. The work promptly disappeared from the repertory for the next 250 years – a fact that is both understandable, given that it's a less convincing result than his fully original operas, and a shame, since Handel's table scraps are still amongst the most entertaining morsels from the period. The present recording, by George Petrou, the Camerata Stuttgart, and a cast of mostly Greek singers, is its first complete performance on CD and an admirably realized production, characterized by polished, stylish singing and vivid orchestral playing. In style, sound, and dramatic pacing, Petrou's effort distinguishes itself as a fine entry in the Handelian opera catalog, and makes a compelling argument for the musical value of the piece itself.
In the winter of 1733-1734, the opera houses of London were abounding in Ariannas. In late December, Porpora's Arianna in Nasso was staged by the Opera of the Nobility. In late January, Handel's Arianna in Creta was staged by the composer's own opera company. Comparison, apparently, proved odious – and fatal: Porpora's Naxos Arianna has fallen from the repertoire while Handel's Cretan Arianna has barely hung on by her finger tips. This 2005 Greek performance with George Petrou leading the Orchestra of Patras is the work's first recording in decades – and, thankfully, it's quite fine. Most of the women soloists – and whether their characters are male or female, most of the parts here are sung by woman because most of the parts then were written for castratos – are terrific. Mata Katsuli is sweet but strong in the title role and Theodora Baka is especially effective and affecting as Alceste. The period instrument Orchestra of Patras is stylish, colorful, and lively, particularly the winds and brass playing in the finale. As captured in Musikproduktion Dabringhaus und Grimm characteristically crisp, deep, and detailed sound, this Arianna is well worth hearing by anyone who reveres the operas of the German-English composer.(James Leonard)
À l'occasion du centième anniversaire de la naissance d'Albert Camus, en novembre 2013, " Bouquins " réédite le premier et seul dictionnaire qui lui soit consacré, aujourd'hui considéré comme l'ouvrage de référence.