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Marc-Antoine Charpentier – Medee (1984)

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Marc-Antoine Charpentier – Medee (1984)

1. Prologue. Ouverture
2. Louis est triumphant
3. Paroissez, charmante Victoire
4. Le Ciel dans nos voeux sinteresse
5. Loure-Canaries-Suite des Canaries
6. Dans le bel age, si l'on n'est  volage
7. Ouverture (reprise)
8. Acte I. Scene 1. Pour flatter mes ennemis
9. Scene 2. D'ou vous  vient cet air somber
10. Scene 3. Que serois heureux
11. Scene 4. L'Allegresse en ces lieux
12. Scene 5. Seigneur, la Thessalie attaquant vos Estats
13. Scene 6. Courez  aux champs de Mars
14. Acte II. Scene 1. Il est temps de parler

1. Acte II. Scene 2. Princesse, c'est sur vous que mon espoir se fonde
2. Scene 3. Enfin a ton amour tout espoir  est permis
3. Scene 4. Prince, venez apprendre une heureuse nouvelle
4. Scene 5. Quand son amour seroit extreme
5. Scene 6. Puisqu'un fier enemy
6. Scene 7. Qu'elle est charmante
7. Acte III. Scene 1. L'orage est  violent
8. Scene 2. Vous savez l'exil qu'on m'ordonne
9. Scene 3. Quel prix de mon amour
10. Scene 4. Croiras-tu mon maheur
11. Scene 5. Noires filles du Stix
12. Scene 6. L'Enfer obeit a ta voix
13. Scene 7. Je vois le don fatal

1. Acte III. Scene 7 (fin). Dieu du Cocyte & des Royaumes sombres
2. Acte IV. Scene 1. Jamais on ne la vit si belle
3. Scene 2 . Ah! Que d'attraits
4. Scene 3. Si-tost que je parois
5. Scene 4. Vous  soupcons estoient vrais
6. Scene 5. D'ou me vient cette horreur
7. Scene 6. Vos adieux sont-ils faits
8. Scene 7. Objets agreables
9. Scene 8. Mon pouvoir t'est connu
10. Scene 9. Noires Divinites
11. Acte V. Scene 1. On ne peut sans effroy
12. Scene 2. Si la pitie vous peut trouver  sensible
13. Scene 3. Venez, parlez
14. Scene 4. Eh bien, barbare
15. Scene 5. Quel feu dans mes veines s'allume
16. Scene 6. Ah, Roy trop malheureux
17. Scene 7. Elle est morte, et je vis!
18. Scene 8. C'est peu, pour contenter la douleur

Jason – Gilles Ragon (tenor)
Medee – Jill Feldman (soprano)
Nerine – Sophie Boulin (soprano)
Creon – Jacques Bona (bass)
Oronte – Philippe Cantor (baritone)
Creuse – Agnes Mellon (soprano)
Les Arts Florissants (Musical group)
William Christie - conductor


This is one of the earliest recordings by William Christie and his famous Les Arts Florissants, and one of their first great successes. This recording won the Gramophone award for the Best Early Opera in 1984, one of the first historically informed performances to win such universal acclaim. Everyone interested in period performance practice should have this recording, together with Christie's 1995 rerecording of this fabulous opera. The comparison between the two versions of the opera reveals a lot about Christie's genius. It is amazing how much the two versions are alike, and yet it is even more amazing, given how great the first version was, how much improvement Christie was able to achieve with his second recording of Medee. Christie's vision of Medee remained fundamentally unchanged between the two recordings, but within that uniform framework he was able to identify and highlight the greatest strenghts of Medee as a remarkably dramatic work, combining the intensely beautiful music with the poignantly dramatic libretto. The second recording followed a series of stage performances that gave Christie and his performers a deeper insight into the work. As a result, the 1995 recording of Medee is truly a thing unto itself; but the 1984 recording nevertheless is more than a mere predecessor - it is also a masterpiece. The recording features a marvelous cast of soloists, with Agnes Mellon especially memorable as Creuse. The singing here is more reserved than on the second Medee; and this is perhaps the main reason Christie chose to rerecord. The 1984 recording also suffers from minor cuts, because of the constraints of the original LP format. The most noticeable cut is the gorgeous solo aria of the Corinthian in the final scene of the first act. Obviously, if you can't spare $$ to buy both recordings, buy the second one. But if you can afford to buy both, you will learn a lot from a comparison between the two. If you're already a Christie fan, you will come away with an even greater respect for him. And if you're relatively new to this kind of music, you will come away with a better understanding of why it deserves your attention. ---amazon.com

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Last Updated (Monday, 30 September 2013 22:59)


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