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Vivaldi: Farnace Box set, Import

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Performer: Max Emanuel Cencic, Ruxandra Donose, Mary-Ellen Nesi, Ann Hallenberg, Karina Gauvin, et al.
  • Orchestra: I Barocchisti
  • Conductor: Diego Fasolis
  • Composer: Antonio Vivaldi
  • Audio CD (Oct. 4 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Box set, Import
  • Label: Virgin Classics
  • ASIN: B0057JWW0K
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
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Disc: 1
1. Sinfonia I. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace
2. Sinfonia II. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace
3. Sinfonia III. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace
4. Recit. Benché vinto e sconfitto. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace, Atto Primo, Scena I
5. Recordati che sei. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace, Atto Primo, Scena I
6. Recit. Ch'io mi tolga col ferro. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace, Atto Primo, Scena II
See all 29 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. Recit. Principessa gentil. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace, Atto Secondo, Scena I
2. Lascia di sospirar. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace, Atto Secondo, Scena I
3. Recit. Tempo miglior si scelga. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace, Atto Secondo, Scena II
4. Alle minacce di fiera belva. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace, Atto Secondo, Scena II
5. Recit. Di Farnace del figlio. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace, Atto Secondo, Scena III
6. Al tribunal d'amore. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace, Atto Secondo, Scena III
See all 25 tracks on this disc
Disc: 3
1. Recit. Gilade. Gran regina. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace, Atto Terzo, Scena I
2. Non trova mai riposo. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace, Atto Terzo, Scena I
3. Signor se la clemenza. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace, Atto Terzo, Scena II
4. Recit. Quanto mai fu crudele. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace, Atto Terzo, Scena III
5. Forse, o caro, in questi accenti. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace, Atto Terzo, Scena III
6. Recit. Sì, qualche nume. - Vivaldi. Il Farnace, Atto Terzo, Scena III
See all 22 tracks on this disc

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Top Customer Reviews

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Thank you, the performance is wonderful. Peter
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa5f07b88) out of 5 stars 6 reviews
27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa2c58cb4) out of 5 stars Masterful Performance Oct. 13 2011
By I. Martinez-Ybor - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
"Farnace" is an opera previously unknown to me, as most Vivaldi operas have been until the last five years or so. The music is inspired, full of color and energy with inventive interplay between solo instruments and voice. The technical demands on singers and instrumentalists are daunting. Not only are there plenty of bravura arias for everybody, but there are beautiful tender moments that not only provide repose but exhault in their melodic grace and profound emotion. The recording excels with Max Emanuel Cencic in the title role. There is no more distinguished counter-tenor performing today. Mr. Cencic voice is powerful, agile, and perfectly equalized from alto to soprano range. His coloratura is impeccable. Many female singers performing today do not even approach this level of technique. Mr. Cencic, of course, has been at this for a long time. He dazzled as a boy soloist with the Wiener Sängerknaben, singing such showpieces as the Allelujah from Exultate Jubilate and Strauss' Frühlingstimme. The mature voice of today retains the ability to dazzle, and has acquired the weight and projection of a mature body, and the depth of interpretation that can only come from thorough musical studies and careful development of his unique artistic gifts. He shines in Farnace in music that demands no less. But in this marvelous performance everybody else shines: Roxandra Donose gives much pleasure, such as she did in the beautiful Glyndebourne Cenerentola, but here in a serious role. Mary Ellen Nesi as Berenice is a find. Diego Fasano conducts with clarity and vivacity a score that cries for a wider audience. Which is indeed the case with Vivaldi operas. The series on the French label Naïve as well as this Virgin recording are commendable for the quality of performances they give us, indeed unmatched by recordings that we routinely see of the standard repertoire. But more importantly, they serve notice that the Red Priest wrote much more than string concertos, that he was an important theatrical composer, and that we are much poorer for not paying attention to his operas. This recording of Farnace is a musical and dramatic success (never mind the plot). It is highly recommended.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa2c582e8) out of 5 stars Exhuming a Rarity Nov. 25 2011
By Grady Harp - Published on
Format: Audio CD
Antonio Vivaldi's opera FARNACE was never performed; this is the premiere recoding of this strange and intensely beautiful work as performed by a world-class cast of singers who understand this era of music like a gloved hand.

According to liner notes and reports FARNACE is `A work bursting with riches ... This powerful operatic tragedy is one of the highlights of Vivaldi's canon,' says the Vivaldi expert Frédéric Delaméa who, with the conductor Diego Fasolis has reconstructed the never-performed version of Farnace that Vivaldi prepared for Ferrara in 1737-38. In this world premiere recording the magnificent cast is led by the brilliant countertenor Max Emanuel Cencic in the title role. Beyond a thrilling line-up of performers, this recording offers collectors the opportunity to enjoy a world premiere of the version of Farnace that Vivaldi prepared specially for the city of Ferrara in 1737-38 after its success in Venice. This is not only the first time the Ferrara Farnace has been recorded, but also the first time it has been heard -- since the planned performances in the city in 1738 were cancelled following the local failure of the Vivaldi opera that preceded it, Siroe.'

The story of the opera is strange: Farnace, King of Pontus, has been defeated, and to avoid their falling into the hands of the enemy, he commands his wife, Tamiri, to kill their son and then herself. Tamiri's mother, Berenice, hates Farnace and is in cahoots with Pompey, the Roman victor, to kill him. Selinda, Farnace's sister, is taken captive by the Roman Aquilius, who falls in love with her, as does Berenice's Captain, Gilades. Selinda plays them off one another in an attempt to save her brother. Somehow, it ends happily and everyone is spared.

The cast is extraordinary: Max Emanuel Cencic creates Farnace), Ann Hallenberg is Selinda, the gloriously gifted soprano Karina Gauvin is Gilade, Daniel Behle is Pompeo, the Bulagarian soprano gaining considerable attention at the moment Ruxandra Donose is Tamiri, Mary-Ellen Nesi sings Berenice, and Emiliano Gonzales Toro is Aquilio. Diego Fasolis conducts I Barocchisti ensemble. Though Vivaldi's operas were not as popular as his other works, this opera is overflowing in beautiful arias and ensembles and is so rich in character that a it would be a joy to see it staged. Until then this is as fine a performance as one could hope for! Grady Harp, November 11
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa3884954) out of 5 stars Thrillingly performed rarity. Feb. 5 2012
By Abert - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is not a pasticcio by Vivaldi - the entire work is authentically Vivaldi's composition, though never performed.
According to information, there were two versions of this opera which Vivaldi wrote. This performance is the latter Ferrara (and never performed) version. In this recording, we got two bonus tracks from the first version that were cut from this latter Ferrara version.

The vocal line up is extraordinary - all the singers are baroque experts, if not outright 'super stars'.
In the title role, Croatian countertenor Max Emanuel Cencic depicts a tortured King of Pontus who was betrayed by members of his own family following political defeat.
As his aggressive mother-in-law Queen of Cappadocia Berenice, Mary Ellen Nesi, an expert mezzo in trouser roles, sung an overbearing middle-aged queen with a chillingly incisive timbre.
The relatively minor character of her captain Gilade, a love-sick for Farnace's sister Selinde, is very effectively portrayed by the wonderful soprano Karina Gauvin. Her aria in the final Act is enchanting in an unearthly manner that demonstrates nothing but artistic greatness.
As Farnace's schemy sister Selinde, Ann Hallenberg is aptly elegant and steely in turn, which can at the quick-sand like instant become devastatingly enchanting. This great baroque mezzo-soprano has been around for almost two decades without ever receiving her due!
The male characters are also wonderfully effective, and so is Tamira, the spouse of Farance, sung by Bulgarian soprano Donose.
Fasolis and his 'band', needless to say, is all that you would ask for on such a stellar performance.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa3153060) out of 5 stars Superb performance on all levels! May 3 2013
By Rev. Ben Cox - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
As a bassoon major at University 45 years ago, my experience of Vivaldi was limited to several bassoon concerti and the famous Gloria. In the last year I have discovered a new wealth of Vivaldi material in the singing of Phillipe Jaroussky and Max Emanuel Cencic.I refer to the recordings of Vivaldi's "Farnace" and Vinci's "Artaserse."

Firstly, the orchestra and Diego Fasolis. I am astounded by the attention to minute detail. I found myself able to hear inner parts, and carefully crafted phrasings throughout the score in every instrumental part. Someone here has done their homework and thoroughly rehearsed. Kudos to Mr. Fasolis for his amazing work with the orchestra.

Vocalists: First, there is not a weak link. Like the orchestra, these singers are all absolutely top-notch, both in terms of terrific voices, and in terms of a scholarly knowledge of the style of the Baroque, Vivaldi's music in particular.
Max Cencic is beyond words! I think it quite possible that this may have been what the very best castrati sounded like, such as Farinelli and Carestini. The voice is feminine, yes, but has a core of masculine metal, along with evenness of range and a very broad range at that. The flexibility of the voice is amazing!

Karina Gauvin, Ann Hallenberg, Daniel Behle, and the others all are exemplary in their performances, adding many, many changes in the da capo sections of their arias.

The vocalists, like the orchestra have paid great attention to the tiny, minute details, that make such a difference in this performance.

The harpsichords!!! These players are not just mindlessly tinkling along with the strings!! They are inventing and creating atmosphere and colour!! I played harpsichord at one point in my musical career. I know how much knowledge one must have to do this style correctly! And then they add to it!! WOW!

This recording, like the recording of Artaserse, should be studied in Music History classes in universities, so that students gain not only an appreciation of the Baroque opera, but also become aware of the performance practice of the period

Again, congratulations to Maestro Fasolis and the entire cast, for a performance more than well done!!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa30565b8) out of 5 stars Excellent recording!!! March 10 2013
By Rafael R - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I have to confess I am not a hardcore fan of Barroque Opera but since I saw this recording had Max Emanuel Cencic as protagonist I decided to buy it and It has been for sure a great pleasure to listen to this excellent recording. Highly recommended!!!