Notes & Reviews:
No less than five brilliant countertenors - including Philippe Jaroussky - join conductor Diego Fasolis and Concerto Köln for Artaserse by Leonardo Vinci (1690- 1730). In early 18th century Italy, the Neapolitan-born composer was one of the brightest stars in opera, and Artaserse is considered his masterpiece.
This recording rises above and beyond with a spectacular line-up of fine countertenors from around the world: The Frenchman Philippe Jaroussky, Max Emmanuel Cencic (from Croatia), Franco Fagioli (from Argentina), Valer Barna-Sabadus (from Romania) and Yuriy Mynenko (from Ukraine). Joining Jaroussky from Germany are a lone tenor, Daniel Behle, and the brilliant Concerto Köln, a leading ensemble in historically informed performance.
Diego Fasolis, one of the brightest stars in the Italian baroque world, brings the inventive arias of this late work to life with wonderful lyricism and power ... this is one to relish." (The Observer, UK); "It is clear that Diego Fasolis exults in the sophistication and beauty of the writing. His celebration of the score is not simply Parnassian - it is also loving. Above all, it remains focused on the dramatic demands of the opera.
BBC Music Magazine, Christmas 2012
Jaroussky is agile and artless in the title role...Cencic (Mandane) offers both eloquent and virtuoso singing...Fagioli makes a compelling Arbace, flitting effortlessly from flamboyant vocal fireworks to liquid bel canto. Undoubtedly, this cast is fine and the vigorous orchestral playing is discerningly shaped by Fasolis.
Charlotte Gardner, bbc.co.uk, 10th December 2012
Vigorously rhythmic and highly dramatic, the opera has extraordinary energy, and some beautiful moments. This recording brings this all out, partly through the cracking tempi set by Diego Fasolis, partly through Concerto K÷ln's effervescent, historically informed performance, and partly through the sheer energy of the cast.
Gramophone Magazine, January 2013
The prison scene that begins Act 3 indicates that Vinci was one of the finest opera composers of his age...The entire cast produces exceptionally good singing. Cencic and Jaroussky give a masterclass of dramatic countertenor singing, and Valer Barna-Sabadus and Yuriy Mynenko...are not far behind...The lone tenor Daniel Behle brings the treasonous Artabano vividly to life.
MusicWeb International, 24th May 2013
[Jaroussky] is a superb singer, brilliant, powerful, technically perfect and so beautiful of tone...[Fagioli's] Arbace is tremendous with breathtaking virtuosity...[Behle] surprises with a tone that is powerful and baritonal...this is one of the best baroque opera recordings I have heard. Don't miss it!
The Guardian, 15th November 2012
The singing is epoch-making, above all from Fagioli, who seems to redefine the capabilities of the countertenor voice and take it beguilingly into territories new. Listen to him, and be seduced.
The Times, 8th December 2012
I was hooked...The range, lyrical invention and virtuosic demands of [Vinci]'s last stage masterpiece Artaserse - relating dark machinations in ancient Persia - are incredible. And this Concerto K÷ln performance, with Philippe Jaroussky first among falsetto equals, fizzes with energy.
Recording information: Deutschland Kammermusiksaal, Köln (09/21/2011-09/28/2011).
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Works DetailsVinci, Leonardo : Artaserse, opera
- Conductor: Diego Fasolis
- Ensemble: Swiss Radio and Television Chorus
- Notes: Deutschland Kammermusiksaal, Köln (09/21/2011-09/28/2011)
- Running Time: 1 min. 54 sec.
- Period Time: Baroque
- Form: Opera/Operetta