Philippe Jaroussky

The Händel Album

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Baroque opera is closely associated with the dominance of castrati in the musical world of the 18th century, and the virtuosic roles in the operas of George Frederick Handel made superstars of Senesio, Nicolini, Carestini, Gizziello, and Caffarelli. For this 2017 Erato release, countertenor and conductor Philippe Jaroussky and his period ensemble Artaserse present an exciting program of arias from the less familiar Handel operas that demonstrate the castrato's extraordinary vocal range and skills, which Jaroussky emulates in his singing, albeit with helpful transpositions to accommodate his lower range. Yet this is not all about brilliant technical displays and superior lung power, for Jaroussky also explores the expressive side of Handel's music. The poignant arias from Imeneo, Siroe, re di Persia, Amadigi di Gaula, Tolomeo, re d’Egitto, and Ezio reveal the intense emotional appeal of the male voice in the rich mezzo-soprano range, while other selections from Riccardo Primo, re d’Inghilterra, Serse, Radamisto, Flavio, re de’ Longobardi, and Giustino offer highly challenging coloratura passages in the soprano tessitura. Erato's recording captures Jaroussky with presence and clarity, and the orchestra has a luster that is enhanced by the responsive acoustics of Notre Dame du Liban, Paris.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
Imeneo HWV 41
1 6:45
Riccardo primo, re d'Inghilterra HWV 23
2 4:18
Siroe, re di Persia HWV 24
3 1:17
4 6:24
Serse HWV 40
5 2:52
Radamisto HWV 12
6 8:13
Radamisto
7 1:01
8 3:37
9 6:09
Flavio, re de' Longobardi HWV 16
10 0:23
11 5:18
Amadigi di Gaula HWV 11
12 3:49
Tolomeo, re d' Egitto HWV 25
13 2:12
Tolmeo, re d' Egitto HWV 25
14 4:20
Giustino HWV 37
15 1:06
16 4:44
Ezio HWV 29
17 3:38
Flavio, re de' Longobardi
18 0:27
19 5:12
blue highlight denotes track pick