Jean-Christophe Spinosi / Ensemble Matheus

Vivaldi: La verità in cimento (Opere teatrali, Vol. 2)

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Opus 111's Vivaldi: La verità in cimento (Truth Put to the Test) is the first complete recording of Antonio Vivaldi's 1720 opera, made in conjunction with a revival of this work at the Bologna Festival, albeit with a different group of singers. This recording has an excellent frontline cast, including veteran singers such as Anthony Rolfe Johnson, Gemma Bertagnolli, Guillemette Laurens, Nathalie Stutzmann, and Sara Mingardo and newcomer Philippe Jaroussky, who is the only vocalist here to have survived from the original Bologna Festival production. The band is Ensemble Matheus under the direction of Jean-Christophe Spinosi, and the instrumental complement is especially aggressive in executing extreme dynamics in Vivaldi. Some may find it a bit much; Spinosi's group almost makes Fabio Biondi sound romantic in approach, though conversely in Europe its work has been very well received overall. This is an extraordinary opera by anyone's standards, an outstanding selection being the ethereal trio, "Aure placide, e serene," featuring the combined talents of Bertagnolli, Mingardo and Jaroussky. Those looking for the aria "La pena amara" -- stated in a popular published edition of Vivaldi's arias as belonging to La verità in cimento, but perhaps not so -- will be disappointed. However, another aria from this work, "Amato ben tu sei la mia speranza," has developed a life of its own and is performed splendidly well here by Gemma Bertagnolli. Vivaldi's story is a comedy of errors set in the court of a Turkish sultan and is rife with numerous deceptions, foils, and intrigues and, in the Bologna Festival production, was given in modern dress; thankfully a complete libretto is included so that the listener can keep track of every twist and turn of the convoluted plot.

Track Listing - Disc 1

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
La verità in cimento, opera in 3 acts, RV739
1
1:37
2
1:46
3
0:45
4
3:57
5
4:12
6
2:37
7
3:20
8
1:41
9
2:09
10
0:49
11
3:11
12
0:52
13
5:49
14
0:17
15
3:33
16
6:51
17
1:36
18
3:31
19
0:31
20
3:27
21
3:07
22
2:05
23
2:49
24
0:45
25
3:26

Track Listing - Disc 2

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
La verità in cimento, opera in 3 acts, RV739
1
0:33
2
6:31
3
1:39
4
3:12
5
2:23
6
3:28
7
2:34
8
0:43
9
4:17
10
1:09
11
2:08
12
0:22
13
2:28
14
7:06
15
1:21
16
2:54
17
1:19
18
3:59

Track Listing - Disc 3

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
La verità in cimento, opera in 3 acts, RV739
1
1:29
2
4:23
3
0:43
4
4:06
5
4:05
6
3:29
7
1:37
8
3:46
9
0:35
10
3:47
11
2:05
12
1:06
13
2:52
14
0:34
15
2:59
16
0:12
17
2:47
18
1:09
blue highlight denotes track pick