Duel: Porpora and Handel in London (CD)

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Giuseppina Bridelli, Le Concert de l'Hostel Dieu, Franck-Emmanuel Comte

Despite the rivalry between the operatic companies leaded by Haendel and Porpora in London (1734-1737), much has to be said about the real nature of the connection between the two composers. Both the musicians were considered outstandingly original for their aesthetic choices. Both admired each other's music. The few whirlwind years of their defiance in Great Britain produced memorable scores: among them, Ariodante by Haendel and Polifemo by Porpora, performed with simultaneous runs in the city theaters. The fight between the two operatic company was an opportunity for the composers to meet and discover each other, to deal with the taste of the audience and to experiment new ideas, getting strength from the incredible skills of the members of the vocal casts (Farinelli, Senesino, Carestini, etc.). This CD tries to capture the soul of such a complicated intellectual relationship, presenting significant exemples of the composers' style and outlining the borders of the mutual esteem between two giants in the history of music.

On her debut solo album, the young talented mezzosoprano Giuseppina Bridelli performs with effortless bravery the difficult pages written for some of the most famous singers of the 18th century: between them, a version with original variations of Haendel Scherza infida

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George Frideric Handel
1. Sta nell’ircana pietrosa tana – from Alcina HWV 34

Nicola Antonio Porpora
2. Nume che reggi ’l mare – from Arianna in Naxo
3. Dolce è su queste alte mie logge a sera – from David e Bersabea
4. Fu del braccio onnipotente – from David e Bersabea
5. Ouverture: I. Without tempo indication – from Polifemo
6. Ouverture: II. Allegro – from Polifemo
7. Ouverture: III. Without tempo indication – from Polifemo
8. A questa man verrà – from Calcante e Achille

George Frideric Handel
9. Scherza infida – from Ariodante HWV 33

Nicola Antonio Porpora
10. Il gioir qualor s’aspetta – from Polifemo

George Frideric Handel
11. Suite de ballet: I. Entrée des songes agréables – from Ariodante HWV 33
12. Suite de ballet: II. Entrée des songes funestes – from Ariodante HWV 33
13. Suite de ballet: III. Entrée des songes agréables effrayés – from Ariodante HWV 33
14. Suite de ballet: IV: Le combat des songes funestes et agréables – from Ariodante HWV 33

Nicola Antonio Porpora
15. Alza al soglio i guardi – from Mitridate

George Frideric Handel
16. Inumano fratel, barbara madre – from Tolomeo HWV 25
17. Stille amare, già vi sento – from Tolomeo HWV 25
18. Quando piomba improvvisa saetta – from Catone in Utica HWV A7