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  • Vivaldi - Bajazet / D'Arcangelo, Daniels, Ciofi, Genaux, Mijanovic, Garanca, Europa Galante, Biondi [Includes Bonus DVD]
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Vivaldi - Bajazet / D'Arcangelo, Daniels, Ciofi, Genaux, Mijanovic, Garanca, Europa Galante, Biondi [Includes Bonus DVD]

26 customer reviews

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Audio CD, May 10, 2005
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Editorial Reviews

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This stunner of an opera involves the proud sultan Bajazet (bass) and his battle with his bloodthirsty rival-tyrant Tamerlane (counter-tenor). More than 50 operas were composed on the subject. Here Vivaldi has composed all the recitatives and marvelous arias for the dignified, fine characters and used arias by other composers--Hasse, Giacomelli, Carlo Broschi--for Tamerlano and the nasties. The music is energetic and virtuosic throughout. Fabio Biondi leads Europa Galante and soloists with urgent, theatrical precision, making the story come to life. The singing could not be better: Ildebrando d'Arcangelo is a remarkably sympathetic Bajazet, singing with fluency and power; David Daniels amazes as Tamerlano; Marijana Mijanovic sings the role of Asteria (Bajazet's daughter) with love and precision; and Viveca Genaux dazzles with her perfect coloratura as Irene. This is a treasure trove of singing, and a bonus DVD allows us to see/hear the performers in rehearsal. Highly recommended. --Robert Levine

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
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Digital Booklet: Vivaldi: Bajazet
Digital Booklet: Vivaldi: Bajazet
Album Only
Digital Booklet: Vivaldi: Bajazet
Digital Booklet: Vivaldi: Bajazet
Album Only

Product Details

  • Performer: David Daniels, Elina Garanca, Marijana Mijanovic, Vivica Genaux, Patrizia Ciofi, et al.
  • Orchestra: Europa Galante
  • Conductor: Fabio Biondi
  • Composer: Antonio Vivaldi
  • Audio CD (May 10, 2005)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Virgin Classics
  • ASIN: B00022LE38
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #146,367 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

55 of 57 people found the following review helpful By Akimon Azuki on September 29, 2005
Format: Audio CD
This is a Bajazet to end all Bajazets and Tamerlanes. The score is first class- Vivaldi wrote some of his most inspired and beautiful music for this one and then wisely borrowed several great pieces from Broschi and others. The story is garbled garbage, but it serves the glorious music just perfect. The orchestra playing has spectacular urgency and flow and all of this is served in a recording of amazing quality- the sound engineers deserve a heap of golden sun medals.

The vocal superstars of this recording fire on all cylinders- there's enough energy in the fast arias to power up a small city, while the slow ones are just as intense.

The standouts? Hard to pick any, everything is that good, but my favourite at the moment is Garanca's Non ho nel sen costanza; Arcangelo's Dove la figlia and Genaux' Qual guerriero are the most vibrant. Vivica outdoes herself in this aria's ornamentations- the writing is already so dense, it seems impossible to actually put any extra notes in there, yet she does that and how! And all this while taking it at even greater speed that she did on her Arias for Farinelli album and with laser point accuracy.

I really did not expect such operatic splendor from Biondi. So far I only associated him with instrumental music, including a horrible rendition of Four Seasons, which I got to know from a most campy music video I saw on TV- it featured a fair maiden in a flowing romantic cloak trashing around a forest, no less- but if Bajazet is a sign of things to come, Biondi and the gang should quit all other gigs and stick to doing as many Baroque operas as possible.
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66 of 71 people found the following review helpful By Paul Van de Water on June 3, 2005
Format: Audio CD
If you're a fan of Vivica Genaux or David Daniels, or if you're a devote of Handel's operas, you'll love Bajazet. In fact, it's based on the same libretto as Handel's Tamerlano (although the texts of the arias appear to be different). Up to now, I've never found Vivaldi's operas very appealing. Even conductor Fabio Biondi calls many of them "boring." (Gramophone, May 2005) In contrast, Biondi terms Bajazet Vivaldi's "best opera score." I bought Bajazet on impulse after hearing a portion of it being played in a local music store and have been absolutely captivated. It's full of baroque vocal pyrotechnics, beautifully performed by singers and instrumentalists alike. Although it all sounds effortless on the CDs, the accompanying DVD gives one a feel for the skill required. The opening three-movement sinfonia is also top-notch Vivaldi. If you're at all tempted to buy this album, don't resist.

Addendum (1/2012): This recording has been reissued as Vivaldi: Bajazet (2 CD/DVD).
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39 of 41 people found the following review helpful By cherubino on September 25, 2005
Format: Audio CD
I have read some frivolous carping regarding this fine, spendid recording. So what if the plot is garbage? We're talking about two CDs full of some the most ornate and varied baroque arias that you can ever hope to hear. If Vivaldi misses some of the counterpoint that works so well for Handel, Bajazet does not suffer for wont of it. If you don't like what you see on the bonus DVD, well, hey, they threw it in for free. If nothing else, it answers the essential question of how Vivica Genaux is able to sing Qual Guerriero di Campo Armato.

Being a pasticcio (pastiche) opera, we are treated to a stunning array of arias, that are lightening fast, slow and stately, pensive, jubilant, and in all cases opulent. Very few operas of this period can boast of such wealth of fine music that each character gets to sing at least two or three first-rate arias!

As glorious as the music is, Virgin Classics ups the ante by assembling one of the finest ensembles in recorded operatic history, in my opinion. What is most notable is that David Daniels is the sole countertenor, while there are three sizzling mezzos- Genaux, Marjanovic, and Garancia (forgive me if I misspelled the last two names). Genaux gets to sing the most ornate and dizzying aria of the whole opera, and thus top billing, but the other two mezzos hold their own. Marjanovic is a force to be reckoned with. She goes for broke, and proves that the has the goods to do so. The final aria of the first disc is an example of her powerful voice and technique. However, she also sings the most intimate and elegaic aria, La Cervetta Timidetta. I was and am spellbound by this aria, which is wonderfully restrained and heart-rendering. Garancia has a voice that is very harmonious, and a possesses a clean technique.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful By someone on December 11, 2005
Format: Audio CD
We speculate about prices or something else many times on these pages. But when I listening this recording, -actually like many other recordings-, I feel that, we are so lucky because we have these stunning, wonderful, marvellous musics,interpreters and also recording labels.And this music can not measure with money or something else. This is art.
Bajazet is a luxurous opera which shines with absolute musical beauty. Ýt is also powerful work. Listen, for example, track 11 on first cd, Elina Garanca's "Quel ciglio vezzosetto". Perhaps you shed tears while listening. And such a voice! Thanks to you Mrs.Garanca! And you should admire Marijana Mijanovic' great interpretations.
Try also, "La verita in cimento"(opus 111)This is a marveollus work too. And we have great voices: Gemma Bertagnolli, Sara Mingardo, Philippe Jaroussky. Viva Vivaldi!
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