Rameau: Regne Amour - Love Songs from the Operas Import
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Admittedly, the collection is somewhat one-side:none of Rameau's dramatic monologues are included; the recital consists mostly of the dance tunes and arriettes that are found in the selected operas' divertissements, and, thusly, not part of the main, dramatic action. But it is in these arias where Rameau shows his true genius for infectious melody, and, collected together, they make for much pleasurable listening.
Most of the first part of the programme is extracted from "Les Indes Galantes", which is a masterpiece of the sub-genre known as "Opera Ballet". The majority of the selections are derived from the divertissement from the first "entree" - "The Benevolant Turk" (an "opera ballet" generally consisted of 3-4 "entrees", each a self-contained one act opera; each "entree" had its own title, characters, and plot, but all the entrees were connected as far as theme).Read more ›
There are many beautiful things in the CD, and for the sheer loveliness of the voice, what a pleasure it is to hear.
As the previous reviewer mentioned, there is a bit of cross-over between this and the delicious "Airs baroque français" by Patricia Petibon - and that is an album I strongly recommend in addition to this. I do personally prefer Petibon's recording, although this CD by Ms Sampson is also charming.
There are a number of reasons for that. Firstly, Petibon is French, and she sings (of course) in perfect French. Ms Sampson's French does not sound entirely French (however, most listeners won't be worried by this). Secondly, Patricia Petibon's understanding of the language also enables her to paint the words and music to convey meaning to an extent that is not equalled by Carolyn Sampson. Again, this won't matter a great deal to most listeners who will primarily be ravished by the lovely sounds of Carolyn Sampson's singing. Thirdly, it's true that there are quite a few purely instrumental pieces on this recording. Not that I particularly object... I love both Rameau's vocal music and his instrumental music, but in general when one purchases a vocal recital album, that's what one wants - a vocal recital.
The differences between the two singers' approach is exemplified mostly in the arias which are sung by each - that is, Rameau's "Soleil, fois de ces lieux !" and "Formons les plus brillants concerts... Aux langeurs d'Apollon".Read more ›
Jean-Phillipe Rameau (1687 -- 1764) began composing operas at the age of 50. (Together with his near-contemporary, Domenico Scarlatti, Rameau shows there is hope yet for us late-bloomers)
With their emotional passion, harmonic daring, and unmistakable rhythms, Rameau initiated a new age in French opera. A figure of the Enlightenment in music, Rameau went far towards initiating the classical style of Gluck and Mozart. French opera during Rameau's time was largely a mixture of dramatic stage material and musical interludes known as divertissiments. Thus, his musical accomplishment can legitimately be approached by a selection from his various operas, as offered on this CD and in the live performance I mentioned above.
Sampson and Skidmore offer selections from seven Rameau operas, including his first opera Hipolyte et Acis of 1733, and including as well Les Indes galantes, Les Paladin, Plate, Zoroastre, Dardanus, and Pygmalion. Many of the works include collections of musical interludes from the divertissiments, while others are solo selections.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I hadn't heard of Carolyn Sampson before I bought this CD, and since there aren't any sample tracks for this CD, I was sort of going out on a limb when I bought this CD... Read morePublished on April 28, 2007 by Basso Profondo
I like this CD a lot and I have listened to it many times since I bought it. Carolyn Sampson has a fine soprano voice and a great vocal technique. Read morePublished on September 17, 2006 by Steven Guy