Sabine Devieilhe

Rameau: Le Grand Théâtre de l'Amour

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The operas of Jean-Philippe Rameau, vast spectacles, may be lost to history in their original forms. Sure, some of them have been produced in the modern era, but no company could muster the combination of singers, instrumentalists, choreography, and costume and scene design that would have accompanied the originals. The closest might be this release by French soprano Sabine Devieilhe, which is a thrill from start to finish. The album simply has it all. Devieilhe's voice is a knockout, and a deceptive one at that: it comes in as a flutelike thing in the mid-range but then scores with an agile top that seems absolutely undaunted by acrobatic vocal writing. The work of the historical-instrument orchestra Les Ambassadeurs under Alexis Kossenko is technically superb and dramatically sharp; they convey the feeling of playing for real theatergoers. The music covers selections from some operas with hugely ambitious themes, and there are three world-premiere recordings. Sample the storm aria from Les Indes Galantes (The Gallant Indians), track 17, with its wind machine and its colorful vocal canvas, for a taste of an immensely satisfying recital by a new face on the scene who makes you wonder just how far she'll eventually go.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
Les Indes Galantes
1 4:44
2 1:53
3 2:57
Les Paladins
4 0:52
Les Fêtes de l'Hymen et de l'Amour
5 1:06
Les Indes Galantes
6 3:52
7 3:27
Les Boréades
8 7:57
9 3:16
Les Paladins
10 3:40
Hippolyte et Aricie
11 0:52
12 2:43
13 1:26
Les Indes Galantes
14 5:54
15 3:44
16 4:42
Les Indes Galantes
17 4:18
18 1:55
Castor et Pollux
19 5:05
Les Fêtes d'Hébé
20 1:40
21 5:01
Les Indes Galantes
22 5:34
23 3:14
blue highlight denotes track pick