Hélène Guilmette / Philippe Sly / Luc Beausejour

Rameau: Les Amants Trahis

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These little-known works by Rameau are solo (and in one case duo) cantatas in the Italian manner, with alternating recitatives and arias, and a flexible language that encompasses both fiery Italianate singing and measured French expression according to the needs of the text. They date from the 1720s, prior to Rameau's operatic masterpieces, and it may be assumed from the composer's later advice to others to do similarly that he wrote them as dry runs for the larger operatic form. They are light pastoral pieces, one of them with a unique vein of comedy: the idea of the titular Les Amants trahis is that two dumped guys complain about their bad luck with their former girlfriends, one of them sadly, the other in a mocking tone. Bass-baritone Philippe Sly and soprano Hélène Guilmette (the part was originally for a countertenor) do not quite get the full force of this, but Sly, really the star of the show here, has an attractive voice that manages to achieve its full distinctiveness within the small dimensions of these pieces. Energetic harpsichordist Luc Beauséjour leads a small group of young Quebec musicians in clean, elegant accompaniments. Those interested in the still largely under-examined question of Rameau's compositional development will be rewarded here.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
Thétis
1 2:24 Amazon
2 1:58 Amazon
3 0:38 Amazon
4 2:02 Amazon
5 0:44 Amazon
6 2:37 Amazon
Les Amants Trahis
7 1:19 Amazon
8 1:32 Amazon
9 0:30 Amazon
10 3:25 Amazon
11 0:48 Amazon
12 1:00 Amazon
13 0:24 Amazon
14 2:34 Amazon
15 1:03 Amazon
16 5:03 Amazon
17 1:21 Amazon
18 5:10 Amazon
Aquilon et Orithie
19 0:54 Amazon
20 2:57 Amazon
21 0:27 Amazon
22 3:56 Amazon
23 0:48 Amazon
24 4:12 Amazon
Le Berger Fidèle
25 0:41
26 4:45
27 0:27
28 3:56
29 0:55
30 4:15
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