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Rameau: Castor & Pollux Highlights / William Christie, Et Al


Release Date: 10/14/2003 
Label:  Harmonia Mundi Musique D'abord Catalog #: 1951501   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Jérôme CorréasAgnès MellonVéronique GensSandrine Piau,   ... 
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 10 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Rameau’s reputation as one of the greatest French composers of the late Baroque rests chiefly on his operas, with their colourful orchestrations, dramatic choruses and subtle blends of aria and expressive recitative. These attributes are already to the fore in Castor et Pollux, his second completed tragédie en musique, which was first staged in 1737.

Though Rameau prepared a shorter, much-revised version in 1754, it is the original that is performed here, complete with its enchanting allegorical prologue and leisurely procession of dances, airs and set-piece spectacles.

Though his pacing isn’t very dramatic – and definitely flags in Act IV – Rameau does provide a wonderful variety of music: notably,
Read more Télaire’s tragic ‘Tristes apprêts’ in Act I, a thrilling trio plus a chorus of irate demons in Act III, and Castor and Télaire’s anguished dialogue in Act V, which closes with a ceremonial flourish – Jupiter descending on an eagle amidst much orchestral thunder.

William Christie and Les Arts Florissants are outstanding exponents of this repertory. The playing is superb and the singing, from principals through to chorus, is magnificent. Castor et Pollux may not be Rameau’s most compelling opera but it couldn’t receive a more brilliant or persuasive account.
Performance: 5 (out of 5); Sound: 5 (out of 5)

-- Graham Lock, BBC Music Magazine
reviewing the complete Castor & Pollux, HM 901435
Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Castor et Pollux: Symphonie guerrière by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Jérôme Corréas (Bass Baritone), Agnès Mellon (Soprano)
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
2.
Castor et Pollux: Sortez d'esclavage by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Jérôme Corréas (Bass Baritone), Agnès Mellon (Soprano), Véronique Gens (Soprano)
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
Language: French 
3.
Castor et Pollux: Brisons tous nos fers by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
Language: French 
4.
Castor et Pollux: Ici se lève l'aurore by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Sandrine Piau (Soprano)
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
Language: French 
5.
Castor et Pollux: Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
6.
Castor et Pollux: Vénus, ô Vénus by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Claire Brua (Soprano), Mark Padmore (Countertenor)
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
Language: French 
7.
Castor et Pollux: Que tout gémisse by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
Language: French 
8.
Castor et Pollux: Tristes apprêts by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Agnès Mellon (Soprano)
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
Language: French 
9.
Castor et Pollux: Premier air pour les Athlètes by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Agnès Mellon (Soprano), Adrian Brand (Tenor), Jean-Claude Sarragosse (Bass),
Jérôme Corréas (Bass Baritone)
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
Language: French 
10.
Castor et Pollux: Deuxième air pour Hébé "Voici des Dieux" by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Jérôme Corréas (Bass Baritone), Véronique Gens (Soprano), Sophie Daneman (Soprano)
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
Language: French 
11.
Castor et Pollux: Séjour de l'éternelle Paix by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Howard Crook (Tenor)
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
Language: French 
12.
Castor et Pollux: Air pour les Ombres by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
Language: French 
13.
Castor et Pollux: Revenez, revenez sur les rivages sombres by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Jérôme Corréas (Bass Baritone), Howard Crook (Tenor)
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
Language: French 
14.
Castor et Pollux: Entrée des Astres by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
15.
Castor et Pollux: Brillez, brillez Astres nouveaux by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Sandrine Piau (Soprano)
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
Language: French 
16.
Castor et Pollux: Que les cieux, que la terre et l'onde by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  William Christie
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
Language: French 

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