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Francesco Morlacchi – Saffo in Leucade, etc. (2003)

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Francesco Morlacchi – Saffo in Leucade, etc. (2003)

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1. Saffo in Leucade	 17:46  
2. La Rosa Appassita, Romanza 1 	4:19 
3. La Rosa Appassita, Romanza 2 	3:37 
4. La Rosa Appassita, Romanza 3 	3:21 
5. Anacreontica Odi D'Un Uom Che Muore 	2:40 
6. Lamento Del Conte Ugolino 		16:35 
7. Sonetta di Dante Venite A Intender		2:37

Patrizia Zanardi, soprano (1-5)
Gioacchino Zarrelli, baritone  (6-7)
Orchestra e Complessa Vocale In Canto (1)
Gabriele Catalucci, conductor (1) and piano (2-7)


Morlacchi began composing music at an early age having studied with his uncle, L. Mazzetti, and L. Caruso, who was the director of a music school in Perugia. His first compositions were a mass and an oratorio. Between 1803-04 Morlacchi was studying with Zingarelli and Mattei. Having composed a cantata, "Te Deum" and a "Pater noster," Morlacchi debutted his first opera "Il poeta in campagna" in 1807. Successful in these endeavors, Morlacchi received a number of commissions resulting in the composition of the operas "La principessa per ripiego" and "Le Danaidi." These operas premiered in 1809 and 1810 respectively. In the latter year he was asked to travel to Dresden to work with the Italian Opera. By 1811 he was installed as the Kapellmeister for life. With diverse performing talents -- being able to play the violin, piano, clarinet, flute, bassoon, horn and cello -- Morlacchi became highly respected by the musicians in Dresden. He also displayed a great talent in recognizing and recruiting exceptional voices. As the Kapellmeister of the Italian Opera in Dresden Morlacchi demonstrated great skill in presentations of operas and oratorios including Bach's "St Matthew Passion" and Handel's "Messiah." The composition of operas continued during his directorship and included "Il nuovo barbiere di Siviglia," "La simplicetta di Pirna," "Il Colombo" and "Il rinnegato" all of which demonstrated an heretofore untapped depth in the character and quality of his compositions. His operas were punctuated with expression, ornamentation, meritorious and meticulous treatment of the vocal score, energetic climaxes and textured rhythms and instrumentation. The death of Morlacchi was one of the contributing factors to the decline of the Italian opera in Dresden. --- Keith Johnson, allmusic.com

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