LULLY. Atys. Les Arts Florissants/Christie (CD+Book) Box set
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Lully is considered by many scholars to be the father of French opera. This groundbreaking and multi-award winning 1987 recording launched a revival of interest in the genre and a veritable explosion of new recordings of French baroque music in general. This release celebrates the 30th anniversary of Les Arts Florissants.
Tous ceux qui furent présents à l'Opéra-Comique en janvier 1987 ont gardé en mémoire ce moment fort où la France redécouvrait avec stupéfaction un genre oublié jusqu'alors: la tragédie en musique. Triomphe scénique sans précédent puis succès discographique international, Atys fut aussi le point de départ d'une nouvelle vision du baroque français. à l'occasion des 30 ans des Arts Florissants, ce livre-disque abondamment illustré rend hommage au travail pionnier de William Christie et de son équipe.
Ce disque est paru pour la première fois en 1987.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
If you're not sure whether you're a fan of French Baroque opera, this probably isn't the best place to start. But if you already know you like the genre, this package would make a wonderful addition to your collection.
The work was brought on stage during that year, as well as being recorded on CD.
For various reasons, the cast on this CD is different from the video recording, with different leads.
In the title role here, we have Belgian tenor Guy de Mey. As I have expected, he delivered 101% of the role of Atys in this recording.
I have no idea why he wasn't singing this role in that grand production, suffice to mention that he would most probably not 'look' the part. Even so, his voice is of exceptional beauty to my ears: it is distinctively baroque, lyrical and light, yet carries full-bodied tone colours and never sounds thin or flat. He always sings in great expressivity; in short, a vocalist of the very top calibre.
As the Cybele the goddess, mezzo-soprano Laurens is highly convincing - she sounds authoritative, pathetic and demanding in turns. Agnes Mellon as the lover Sangaride is of limpid and girlish tone and depicts the character very well.
Unlike the video productions of 1987 and 2011, Celenus here isn't portrayed by Rivenq, but Gardeil.
The story of Atys is magically tragic, smacking of Daphne and Apollo's tale. The music represents Lully at his very best, and the performance under the direction of Christie is nothing short of being exemplary.
If you find the DVD of Atys issued in 2011 interesting and lovely, this CD version would undoubtedly make you crave for even more!