Notes & Reviews:
Virgin Classics invites you to enjoy the world premiere recording of Viviadi's Il Farnace in a version that Vivaldi prepared specially for the city of Ferrara in 1737-38 after its success in Venice. This is not only the first time the Ferrara version of Farnace has been recorded, but also the first time it has been heard, as the planned performances of 1738 were cancelled due to the local failure of the Vivaldi opera that preceded it, Siroe.
Farnace was never staged again anywhere, and the only surviving trace of its music is in the form of an incomplete score carefully notated and preserved by Vivaldi in his personal collection. It is the only remaining opera of Vivaldi never to have been performed since the composer's time, and, unlike all the others, has remained unrecorded until now.
The chances are that Vivaldi never completed this Farance. However, with the reconstruction of the third act by Diego Fasolis and Frédéric Delaméa, this album presents a rare opportunity to discover a work bursting with riches, the last fruit of Vivaldi's unprecedented operatic output. In this recording, the cast is led by the brilliant countertenor Max Emanuel Cencic in the title role with the support of conductor Diego Fasolis and the famed I Barocchisti ensemble.
"With its blackly comic plot, the score is full of energy and mischievous high spirits: outstanding among many delightfully inventive numbers is the ingenious quartet Io crudel? Giusto rigore. The performance fairly crackles, with accomplished singing by the flamboyant countertenor Max Emanuel Cencic in the virtuoso title role." -The Daily Telegraph
BBC Music Magazine
Fasolis gives a vibrant account of a fine score with supple rhythms, well-judged tempos and dramatically charged recitative imparting character at every turn...Cencic enlivens [the title-role] with expressive virtuosity, though the star of the piece, for me, is Karina Gauvin in the role of Gilades, Berenice's captain. She has one of the most tenderly alluring arias Vivaldi ever wrote, the 'Scherza l'aura lusinghiera'.
I Barocchisti's playing flows freely between energy and eloquence and Fasolis ensures a perfect match of stylishness and imagination in the diverse aria accompaniments...[Cencic's] brilliant coloratura is never merely showy, his poetic lament singing is superb...and his knack for portraying explosive vengefulness does not preclude intelligent musicality...this marvellous recording reveals that Vivaldi's theatrical fantasy is a journey worth taking.
International Record Review
The cast is well chosen, with no disappointments...The panoply of arias is as rewarding as any I know among Vivaldi operas...All in all, a triumph. Fasolis give a vibrant account of a fine score and his supple rhythms, well-judged tempos and dramatically charged recitative...An outstanding achievement all round.
It's clear from this scrupulously scholarly version that Vivaldi lavished great care on the piece, revising it for the city of Ferrara in a version that was never used or even completed. 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.
Recording information: Auditorium Stelio Molo, Lugano, Switzerland (07/02/2010-07/10/2010).
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Works DetailsVivaldi, Antonio : Il Farnace, RV 711
- Conductor: Diego Fasolis
- Ensemble: I Barocchisti
- Notes: Auditorium Stelio Molo, Lugano, Switzerland (07/02/2010-07/10/2010)
- Running Time: 1 min. 56 sec.
- Period Time: Baroque
- Form: Opera/Operetta
- Written: 02/10/1727