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Gluck: L'Innocenza giustificata

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Audio CD, May 4, 2004
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Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Sinfonia: Allegro
  2. Sinfonia: Andante
  3. Sinfonia: Presto
  4. Signor, de'cenni tuoi (Scena 1)
  5. D'atre nubi (Aria) - Veronica Cangemi
  6. Qual presagi funesti minaccian questo dì! (Scena 2)
  7. Sempre è maggior del vero (Aria)
  8. Eterni Dei, da questo cor (Scena 3)
  9. Guarda pria se in questa fronte (Aria) - Maria Bayo
  10. Ed io qui resto ancor? (Scena 4)
  11. A' giorni suoi la sorte (Aria) - Marina De Liso

Disc: 2

  1. No, soffrirlo non deggio! (Scena 1)
  2. Va, ti consola (Duetto) - Veronica Cangemi
  3. Claudia, pur ti riveggo (Sena 2)
  4. Giovane sventura (Scena 3)
  5. D'atre nubi (Cavata) - Maria Bayo
  6. Ah, Valerio, ah Signor! (Scena 4)
  7. Quercia annosa sull'erte pendici (Aria)
  8. Flavio, Flamina, e come, ancor temete? (Scena 5)
  9. La merita palma (Aria) - Maria Bayo
  10. Assistete la, o Numi (Scena 6)
  11. Non è la mia speranza (Aria) - Veronica Cangemi
  12. Ritornello
  13. Deh secondo, ospite Nume (Coro)
  14. Contro il voler del ciel (Scena 7)
  15. Noto è il reo (Coro)
  16. Si, si, Claudia morrà (Scena ultima)
  17. Ah, rivolgi, o casta diva (Arietta) - Maria Bayo
  18. O Roma (Recitativo)
  19. Grazie al ciel (Coro finale)


Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 4, 2004)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Sony Classical
  • Run Time: 87 minutes
  • ASIN: B00015VVHK
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #505,720 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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By DAVID BRYSON VINE VOICE on May 4, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Technically speaking, this attractive and most enjoyable musical tableau is not strictly an `opera'. It is a `festa teatrale', differing from opera seria in having only two acts not three, in having little or no overt `action' and in steering clear of the more harrowing emotions. The librettist is not known for a certainty, but it seems likely to have been Count Durazzo, a kind of Genoese cultural attache at the imperial court in Vienna. The story is of a kind at which Gluck excelled - all statuesque marmoreal classical figures expressing dignified and edifying sentiments. As usual from Gluck irrationality, irrelevance and stagy operatic nonsense generally are sternly excluded. At his best, Gluck is hard to beat. He was not an accomplished composer in the technical sense as Handel caustically pointed out, averring that his own cook, a gifted singer called Walz, knew more counterpoint than Gluck did. Gluck's music depends entirely on inspiration, lacking the professional resourcefulness that almost any other composer of comparable stature would have thought indispensable, but when the inspiration is on him that never seems to me to matter, and his unflinching rationality is always a dependable bonus too.
The legend here is found in both Livy and Ovid. Claudia, one of the Vestal Virgins charged with keeping the sacred flame alight, faces the double accusation of letting it go out and also of behaviour alleged to have been other than vestal with a young Roman knight Flavius. For this she is condemned to death unheard by the Senate, a sentence enthusiastically endorsed by the Roman mob. Meantime a ship carrying the sacred statue of the Bona Dea runs aground in the Tiber, a manifest omen of displeasure from the gods.
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The honor and virtue of the Roman Vestal Virgins would seem to be an obscure subject even for 18th century opera goers, used to extreme ancient and mythological plots. But,as pointed out already, this is a brief "feste teatrale", a short tableau opera that is nothing more than an excuse for a few emotional pieces and a couple of set changes. This is a delightful little confection, but probably for Gluck specialists only (the Gluck opera recording everyone should have is "Paride ed Elena", with Kozema and Gritton, Paul McCreesh cond).

There's certainly some delightful moments of singing here. Veronica Cangemi is one of my favorite baroque performers and her duet here with Maria Bayo "Va, ti consuola" is the high point of the show.
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Gluck had an uncluttered mind in all details.
Gluck is a poet of basics. He took from standard theory only what he needed.
The beauty of this work, which is beautifully preformed, is almost Zen-like in it's simplicity. The mood is subdued and intimate. Using flower arrangement as a metaphor, what dominates is on the way the stems and leaves gives shape, line and form. Minimal coloring, a twist of a branch creates telling effects.
Those who go for the splendor of the Baroque may not warm up to it. Even less those who are fans of Wagner and Strauss.
Yet the restrain, austere, and delicate beauty is for those who respond to it's fresh vitality.
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