Handel & Porpora - The Rivals
ASV Gaudeamus CD GAU 192
Texts & Translations included
Total Playing Time: 59:00

"The Rivals"

The Four Nations Ensemble
Andrew Appel, harpsichord & director
Ryan Brown, violin
Loretta O'Sullivan, cello
Christine Brandes, soprano
Geoffrey Burgess, oboe


George Frideric Handel (1685 - 1759)
Sonata for Violin & Basso Continuo in F major, Op. 1 No. 12
Cantata - Languia di bocca lusinghiera
German Arias
    - Singe, Seele, Gott zum Preise
    - Meine Seele hört im Sehen
    - Süsse Stille, sanfte Quelle

Nicolo Porpora (1686 - 1768)
Sonata for Cello & Basso Continuo in G major
Cantata - D'amore il primo dardo
Aria - Quanti affani

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"The performances are delectable." --- Early Music Review

". . . well recorded, and enjoyable..." --- Gramophone
"The Rivals" gives a unique opportunity to compare the young Handel with his main competitor on the London musical scene of the early 18th century. For Porpora, the greatest singing teacher of the age, vocal elegance with sweet musical simplicity was the only choice. His music has a natural beauty that is well worth hearing today. He is represented by a graciously melodic cantata, an elegantly song-like cello sonata and a typical aria-transcription for violin. None are otherwise recorded.

Handel, the true Baroque composer, matches him with an early masterpiece of a violin sonata, with three German arias from the 1720s, and - especially valuable - the only recording of a cantata fragment Languia di Bocca Lusigniera, showing a young genius nearing mastery. The splendid Four Nations Ensemble has already shown its enterprise with two CDs of Schobert Sonatas. Here the ensemble is enhanced by the silvery-toned soprano of Christine Brandes, and oboist Geoffrey Burgess.

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