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Mozart: Il Re Pastore, opera / Anna Devin, Sarah Fox, Alish Tynan, John Mark Ainsley, Benjamin Hulett. Classical Opera Orchestra, Ian Page

Album Summary

>Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus : Il rè pastore, opera, K. 208
Conductor Ensemble Composer

Notes & Reviews:

Classical Opera continue their Mozart recording cycle with Il Re Pastore - a youthful work that shines with the richness of its orchestration, inexhaustible melodic inspiration and dazzlingly ingenious score. Founded in 1997 by conductor Ian Page to explore the works of Mozart and his contemporaries, Classical Opera performs with its own acclaimed period-instrument orchestra, Due to the high quality of its performances, imaginative programming and ability to discover and nurture outstanding young singers, the company has attracted considerable critical and public recognition.

Sunday Times, 11th October 2015
The work can't help being beautiful, and it's performed with energy and spirit by Ian Page and his lively forces. The three sopranos, Sarah Fox (Aminta), Ailish Tynan (Elisa) and Anna Devin (Tamiri), vie with each other in graceful singing.

The Guardian, 15th October 2015
The whole thing - which, for completists, includes an extended, concert version of Aer Tranquillo as an appendix - sounds poised and elegant under Ian Page's tasteful and slightly anonymous direction, with a neatly expressive orchestra and a strong cast headed by Sarah Fox's gleaming, supple-sounding Aminta and John Mark Ainsley's more self-consciously regal Alexander.

CD Review, 10th October 2015
The complete work needs performances as well balanced, lively and affectionate as this one.

Gramophone Magazine, November 2015
It is hard to imagine hearing another performance as convivial and life-affirming as this. The Orchestra of Classical Opera play supremely well...Page's unobtrusive pacing of the pastoral mini-drama and sage weighting of orchestrally accompanied recitatives pull the listener along gently.

MusicWeb International, 1st December 2015
This piece is all about the music and the performance, and Ian Page puts his cards on the table straightaway in an overture that crackles with life ... This is an excellent performance and a superbly produced recording ... This is my first encounter with the Signum Classics Mozart series, and I am completely sold.

BBC Music Magazine, January 2016
We have accomplished singers here who negotiate the occasionally tricky music with fluency and poise. John Mark Ainsley (as Alexander the Great) is a commanding presence...It is a rare delight that real 'display' cadenzas are improvised by the singers at all appropriate points, and that the orchestra is directed with commendable style.

Classical Music, December 2015
Mozart's delightful early opera comes up fresh as new paint in this fleet, beautifully-recorded new set. Fox and Tynan are perfectly matched young lovers and Ainsley is achingly moving as the old king. Orchestral playing is sparkling and pristine. This modestly-priced set now leads the field on CD.

American Record Guide, March/April 2016
This performance, recorded in July of 2014, should satisfy any lover of this kind of opera. The three sopranos impress the most. Sarah Fox, in the title role, has a lovely voice plus the range and agility for this heroic role, originally done by a castrato. As the two women, sopranos Ailish Tynan and Anna Devin match Ms Fox with their vocal beauty and technique. In the role of Alexander, John Mark Ainsley displays a tenor of average vocal quality. Benjamin Hulett does well with the important role of Agenore. Ian Page leads his Orchestra of Classical Opera properly in the music they were apparently created to play.

The booklet contains good background information on the opera and a complete Italian- English libretto. There is also the addition of a concert version of the recitative and aria 'Aer tranquillo e di sereni' included at the end of Act I. I would only wish for some bios of these fine singers.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: St. John's Smith Square, London, UK (07/17/2014-07/25/2014).


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Works Details

>Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus : Il rè pastore, opera, K. 208
  • Conductor: Ian Page
  • Ensemble: Classical Opera Orchestra
  • Notes: St. John's Smith Square, London, UK (07/17/2014-07/25/2014)
  • Running Time: 64 min. 15 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Written: 1775