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Mozart - The Early Operas - Ascanio In Alba

Release Date: 01/25/2005 
Label:  Brilliant Classics   Catalog #: 92347   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer:  Thomas Michael AllenNicola WemyssMaaike BeekmanClaudia Patacca,   ... 
Conductor:  Jed Wentz
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Musica ad RhenumCoqu Vocal Ensemble
Number of Discs: 3 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 2 Hours 34 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Composed for the wedding of the Archduke Ferdinand when Mozart was 14 years old and in Milan, Ascanio in Alba, dubbed a "festa teatrale", is a courtly little pastoral in which Venus blesses and advises her son, Ascanio, in his marriage to Silvia, while the priestly Aceste (the only male voice) looks on. It was a grand success. Today, the too-frequent, minute-long choruses of nymphs and shepherds, the too-long secco recitatives (more than half the work), and the go-nowhere emotions are not mitigated nearly enough by some charming orchestration, the occasional virtuosic aria, and the go-nowhere situation. This is not to say that there aren't many moments that are enchantingly Mozartean, such as Fauno's (yes, Fauno's) dazzling "Dal tuo gentil Read more sembiante", here stunningly sung by Claron McFadden, who is excellent throughout. There's also Aceste's "Per la gioia", with some fine horn-playing backing the tenor (here the bland but efficient Tom Allen), and "Come e felice stato", sung brilliantly by the Silvia, Nicola Wemyss. The other singers are very good, and the singing and playing of Vocal Ensemble Coqu and Musica ad Rhenum is zippy and excellent under Jed Wentz (about whom the accompanying booklet tells us nothing). This Ascanio is far superior to the lackluster Philips recording under Leopold Hager, so if you can make do with only an Italian libretto, which is all Brilliant offers, and you must have a CD of this work, this is the one. Sound is excellent.

--Robert Levine, ClassicsToday.com Read less

Works on This Recording

Ascanio in Alba, K 111 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer:  Thomas Michael Allen (Tenor), Nicola Wemyss (Mezzo Soprano), Maaike Beekman (Countertenor),
Claudia Patacca (Soprano), Claron McFadden (Soprano)
Conductor:  Jed Wentz
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Musica ad Rhenum,  Coqu Vocal Ensemble
Period: Classical 
Written: 1771; Milan, Italy 
Date of Recording: 05/2002 
Venue:  Maria Minor Church, Utrecht, Netherlands 
Length: 154 Minutes 15 Secs. 
Language: Italian 

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