Later in life Hasse’s operas would be spoken of in the same breath as the poet Metastasio, whose librettos he frequently set, as though the two were one: a high-minded, classicizing Marc Antonio e Cleopatra . It brought Hasse a degree of renown in wealthy Neapolitan circles, and a commission from the San Bartolomeo opera house for Il Sesostrate . That in turn blossomed into a lucrative match-up, with seven opera seria composed and produced in six years, as well as a number of comic intermezzo operas and a full-length opera buffa for other venues. Hasse was suddenly on the fast track to fame and contracts.
Like Handel had done some years earlier, Johann Adolf Hasse left his native Germany in 1721 to gain some Italian polish, He eventually settled in Naples and studied with Porpora and Alessandro Scarlatti. In 1730 he moved to Dresden where he became Kapellmeister, married one of Handel's divas and the two became the power couple of late baroque opera.
For her first Sony Classical album of Mozart arias, the young Swiss soprano Regula Mühlemann received fantastic reviews all over the world. She was introduced to an audience of millions in 2016 at the ZDF Advent Concert from the Frauenkirche in Dresden, where she conquered the audience along with the second soloist of the evening, Sonya Yoncheva.
In 2002, the beautiful Canadian-Armenian soprano Isabel Bayrakdarian scored a major success when she appeared as Cleopatra, Queen of Egypt, in Handel’s opera Giulio Cesare for the Canadian Opera Company. As one critic observed at that time, "Cleopatra is one of Handel’s most superb, and psychologically intricate, creations. The luminous Bayrakdarian has made a wonderful beginning in a role she will surely take to the great stages of the world—at first childishly seductive, then calculating, and ultimately revealing a profound nobility and vulnerability." For her third CD for CBC Records, Ms. Bayrakdarian has chosen arias from four works focusing on the Egyptian femme-fatale..