Thread: What opera have you purchased recently?

          
   
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    Staff Writer & Reviewer - Life-time Donor Veteran Member Jephtha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HarpsichordConcerto View Post
    I knew somebody would ask! In my mind, Handel's English oratorios were dramatic oratorios (exception being The Messiah). There are interpretations that take on a dramatic pace (which I personally prefer), and others that take on a more "sacred" and paced interpretation. This is a generalisation that tends to be quite consistent amongst those conductors who have recorded several of the oratorios. While I have a preference, I still do enjoy both in the collection. McCreesh and Jacobs for example would be amongst the former, while the new recording under Harry Christophers and Peter Neumann (MDG Gold label) would be amongst the later. They are all fine. It comes down to one's preference. This is the key difference with the oratorios. (The Naxos one above is the only one that I might not consider too about other than it was very cheap).
    Thanks for this interesting take on the oratorios, HC!

    I wonder if Handel ever intended for some of the oratorios to be staged. So many of them have plots and character names for the singers. Some of them, like Belshazzar, even have scenic and stage directions.

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    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jephtha View Post
    I wonder if Handel ever intended for some of the oratorios to be staged. So many of them have plots and character names for the singers. Some of them, like Belshazzar, even have scenic and stage directions.
    Some of them have been. even the Messiah, although that one with action that was additional to the words


    Natalie

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    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jephtha View Post
    Alma, I thought I knew all of Handel's operas, but I have never heard of this one. Is it a pastiche, or perhaps Curtis' completion of a fragment?
    It's one of the three Handel pastiches.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

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  6. #619
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member HarpsichordConcerto's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jephtha View Post
    Thanks for this interesting take on the oratorios, HC!

    I wonder if Handel ever intended for some of the oratorios to be staged. So many of them have plots and character names for the singers. Some of them, like Belshazzar, even have scenic and stage directions.
    As far as they know, the English oratorios were not staged in the sense like the Italian operas were. A few of the other earlier ones may have had simple staging when Handel was composer in residence / guest, such as La Resurrezione and Esther. But the later English oratorios were generally not, as they were business ventures taken by Handel himself. Elaborate staging would have been expensive, and by then Handel knew all too well the precarious finances involved with staging elaborate Italian opera (with the expensive singers, too). The English oratorios were often sung by local English singers in lead roles, not expensive superstars from abroad.

    But today, everything can be staged!

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    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Amfortas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HarpsichordConcerto View Post
    But today, everything can be staged!
    In all sorts of ways! Dontcha' just love it, Harpy?

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    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    Some of them have been. even the Messiah, although that one with action that was additional to the words


    I think Theodora works very well as an opera (and both these productions are good, if my memory serves me right - I saw them a while ago). That Messiah was a stretch as far as opera-like staging is concerned; it doesn't feel operatic; but oh boy, was it beautiful! I loved that blu-ray. It's not opera, but is outstanding! Belshazzar, I haven't seen. Should I get it?
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

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    Senior Member Top Contributor Member HarpsichordConcerto's Avatar
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    Belshazzar is dramatic enough and I would welcome any staging of it. The Jacobs version on DVD/Blu-ray is worth getting, the first I have seen a staging of it.


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    Senior Member Involved Member StLukesGuildOhio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dark_Angel View Post
    A couple Glossa label releases on sale at Presto UK






    The first Vivaldi festival work is also available on Naive label which I really like

    That Scarlatti disc truly convinced me of Scarlatti the Elder's genius.
    "Suppose you were an idiot ... And suppose you were a member of
    Congress .. But I repeat myself." -Mark Twain

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    Senior Member Involved Member StLukesGuildOhio's Avatar
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    My purchases recently have focused more upon what I consider to be the "core repertoire"... alternative performances of favorites and music I am at least somewhat acquainted with. At present I'm finding more pleasure in digging deeper into the music I already know to an extent, than in exploring music that is wholly "new" to me. Not a lot of opera... but I am sitting on over 150 if not 200 opera recordings "still to be listened to"! Plenty of Bach, Beethoven, and Mozart... and you can never go wrong there. Now if I keep coming here... and seeing HarpsichordConcerto's posts in particular... I'm going to end up spending the whole of my tax return on Handel operas and oratorios.
    "Suppose you were an idiot ... And suppose you were a member of
    Congress .. But I repeat myself." -Mark Twain

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  17. #627
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member HarpsichordConcerto's Avatar
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    Another nice wide ranging purchase. One thing that I notice you do purchase a significant amount of are "historical" recordings (or ast least recordings that were recorded probably more than four or five decades ago). That's something I have not gone into much, maybe one that I might like to explore.

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    Senior Member Top Contributor Member HarpsichordConcerto's Avatar
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    I put this order yesterday with ArkivMusic. (I should make a habit of reporting here what I purchase but sometimes get lazy with the links/pictures but seeing StLukesGuildOhio's patience in putting the thread above together, I feel motivated and hence shall endeavour).









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    And a Handel opera, Amadigi di Gaula. I regretted not buying this earlier when it got released in 2008/2009 and it appears to be available now via download only, which I will not settle for. So might as well buy a CD version from Amazon. I already have the version under Marc Minkowski with Les Musiciens du Louvre. This band plays the strings quite harsh as you might be able to hear from the sample clip below. It makes a big sound.




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    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Dark_Angel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HarpsichordConcerto View Post
    And a Handel opera, Amadigi di Gaula. I regretted not buying this earlier when it got released in 2008/2009 and it appears to be available now via download only, which I will not settle for. So might as well buy a CD version from Amazon. I already have the version under Marc Minkowski with Les Musiciens du Louvre. This band plays the strings quite harsh as you might be able to hear from the sample clip below. It makes a big sound.



    I have that Ambroisie label CD version also and really like it,
    you literally cannot go wrong buying any good performance of Handel's Italian opera works, also have the Minkowski version in the budget boxset series, a smart buy

    Ambroisie like Glossa is a special boutique label that has great recordings but high cost and availabilty can cause problems for many buyers


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  21. #630
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member HarpsichordConcerto's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dark_Angel View Post

    I have that Ambroisie label CD version also and really like it,
    you literally cannot go wrong buying any good performance of Handel's Italian opera works, also have the Minkowski version in the budget boxset series, a smart buy

    Ambroisie like Glossa is a special boutique label that has great recordings but high cost and availabilty can cause problems for many buyers
    Agree. I enjoyed their version of Rodrigo. (I have Alan Curtis' version as well. Both good). I am quite happy with my purchase of Amadigi. There are not many Handel operas performed by early music groups that I now don't have. hehehe ///


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