Flotow: Alessandro Stradella

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Eddins
During the trend of composers writing operas about composers witness, for example, Alfred Schnittke's 1994 "Gesualdo," Franz Hummel's 1996 "Gesualdo," and Bo Holten's 2004 "Gesualdo" it was not, in fact, an entirely new phenomenon. Pfitzner's 1915 "Palestrina" is the earliest composer-opera to have come anywhere close to entering the repertoire, but there were at least five operas written in the nineteenth century on the life of Alessandro Stradella, based on a biography, now discredited, that sensationalized his illicit romantic liaisons. Flotow's version, written in 1844, was his most popular work apart from "Martha," and continues to be performed in Germany, but is ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Eddins
During the trend of composers writing operas about composers witness, for example, Alfred Schnittke's 1994 "Gesualdo," Franz Hummel's 1996 "Gesualdo," and Bo Holten's 2004 "Gesualdo" it was not, in fact, an entirely new phenomenon. Pfitzner's 1915 "Palestrina" is the earliest composer-opera to have come anywhere close to entering the repertoire, but there were at least five operas written in the nineteenth century on the life of Alessandro Stradella, based on a biography, now discredited, that sensationalized his illicit romantic liaisons. Flotow's version, written in 1844, was his most popular work apart from "Martha," and continues to be performed in Germany, but is little known elsewhere. The story involves the power of Stradella's music to avert his murder at the hands of his lover's guardian. Flotow, along with Otto Nicolai and Albert Lortzing who had written a singspiel about Mozart in 1833, filled the gap in German opera between Weber and Wagner. Having fulfilled that function, their music, lacking strong personality and being heavily indebted to Italian opera, is rarely performed. Flotow's "Alessandro Stradella" is a very competent work, dramatically engaging and full of attractive if conventional music; it frequently sounds like the kind of music Arthur Sullivan so skillfully lampooned in his operettas. It has moments of real lyric effectiveness; Stradella's aria "Jungfrau Maria, himmlisch Verklãrte" is memorably melodious. It's easy to see, given the dearth of competition, why the opera would have been beloved in its own time, and equally easy to see why it has failed to secure a place in the repertoire of great operas. The recording makes as strong a case as possible for the opera. The WDR Rundfunkorchester and Chorus, Köln, under Helmuth Froschauer, performs with conviction and energy, making even the clichéd gestures and conventions sound as fresh as they must have before they became clichés. Jörg Dürmüller's tenor is strong and supple, and he delivers a virtuoso performance as Stradella, bringing him alive as a believable and appealing character. Basses Markus Marquardt, Johannes Martin Kränzle, and Bernhard Schneider have powerful, focused voices and are skilled comedians, keeping the action lively. Soprano Sabine Passow, whose timbre becomes strained and shrill in the upper register, makes the only weak contribution.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/1/2005
  • Label: Capriccio
  • UPC: 845221004655
  • Catalog Number: 60117

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1–23 Alessandro Stradella, opera - Friedrich von Flotow & WDR Rundfunkchor Köln (100:37)
    Composed byFriedrich von Flotow
    Conducted byHelmuth Froschauer
    Performed byWDR Rundfunkchor Köln, Westdeutschen Rundfunk-Orchester, Cologne, Jörg Dürmüller, Helmuth Froschauer, Markus Marquardt, Jorg Ritter, Bernhard Schneider, Johannes Martin Kränzle, Sabine Passow
    1. 1Ouvertüre
    2. 2Act 1. No. 1. Introduktion und Szene. In des Mondes Silberhelle
    3. 3Act 1. No. 2. Serenade. Horch, Liebchen, horch
    4. 4Act 1. No. 3. Szene. Doch seht! In der Geliebten Zimmer
    5. 5Act 1. Nocturno. Durch die Täler, über Hügel, führt die Liebe uns
    6. 6Act 1. No. 4. Finale. Doch horch! - Freudessausen, Jubelbrausen
    7. 7Act 1. Ballett
    8. 8Act 1. Schlussszene. Zu Jubelchor und frohem Reigen
    9. 9Act 2. Introduktion
    10. 10Act 2. No. 5. Rezitativ und Arie. So wär es denn erreicht... -Seid meiner Wonne stille Zeugen
    11. 11Act 2. No. 6. Chor. Hört die Glocken freundlich locken
    12. 12Act 2. No. 7. Duett. An dem linken Strand des Tiber
    13. 13Act 2. No. 8. Finale. Glockenklänge? - Bunte Menge!... Froh durchs Leben hinzustreben
    14. 14Act 2. Trinklied. Raus mit dem Nass aus dem Fass
    15. 15Act 2. Ballett
    16. 16Act 2. Schlussszene mit Liedchen von Salvator Rosa. Doch soll die Lust vollkommen sein - Tief in de
    17. 17Act 3. No. 9. Introduktion und Wechselgesang. Italia, mein Vaterland
    18. 18Act 3. No. 10. Pilgerchor. Rosig strahlt die Morgensonne
    19. 19Act 3. Rezitativ. Das Haus scheint leer
    20. 20Act 3. No. 11. Terzett. Sag doch an, Freund Barbarino
    21. 21Act 3. No. 12. Finale. Aber still! Ich höre nah'n... Ruhig, leise, stille, sacht - Wie freundlich s
    22. 22Act 3. Gebet. Jungfrau Maria, himmlisch Verklärte
    23. 23Act 3. Rezitativ und Schlussszene. Wie! Was seh' ich? Mein Vormund!... Fromme Menge, im Gedränge
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Helmuth Froschauer Primary Artist
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