André Campra: Le Carnaval de Venise

“…At the dawn of a new century when André Campra was busy writing his Carnaval de Venise (1699), was the composer aware that he would be passing onto the Académie Royale de Musique a fabulous and legendary work that would remain without successors? And whilst the court of the ageing Louis XIV was endeavouring to conserve the spirit of the Grand Siècle at Versailles, Paris was already humming with the new ideas of the Age of Enlightenment. With its prologue and three festive acts, with its exotic dances and its virtuosic arias in Italian, Le Carnaval de Venise is one of the most original experiences to be had in musical drama from the time, one which was to earn Campra the reputation as the new maestro of French opera, as well as of being the musical eulogist for the Regency. In a magisterial act of conflation, this composer blends the styles of Lully, Lalande, Monteverdi and Cavalli and manages also to foreshadow Handel and Rameau. He dreams up a multi-hued score, capable unquestionably of recapturing in Paris both the carnival spirit in general and that of the legendary Venice in particular…”

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Jean-Baptiste Lully: Armide (Live)

0:00:00 March of Hidraot (from Act I)
0:02:05 Ouverture, Prologue
0:23:16 First Act
0:48:06 Second Act
1:21:02 Third Act
1:46:08 Fourth Act
2:04:28 Fifth Act

• Armide (magician, niece of Hidraot): Stéphanie d’Oustrac
• Renaud ( a knight): Paul Agnew
• La Haine (Hate): Laurent Naouri
• La Gloire (Glory), Phénice (a confidante of Armide), Lucinde (a demon in the form of the Danish Knight’s beloved): Claire Debono
• La Sagesse (Wisdom), Sidonie (a confidante of Armide), Mélisse (a demon in the form of Ubalde’s beloved): Isabelle Druet
• Hidraot (magician, King of Damascus): Nathan Berg
• Ubalde (a knight), Aronte (guard of Armide’s captive knights): Marc Mauillon
• Artémidore (a knight): Marc Callaghan
• Le Chevalier Danois (the Danish Knight, companion of Ubalde): Andrew Tortise
• Un amant fortuné (a happy lover): Anders J. Dahlin

Les Arts Florissants (chœur et orchestre )
William Christie, direction