Radamisto, opera, HWV 12: Act 2. Scene 1. Quando mai, spietata sorte
Alcina, opera, HWV 34: Act 2. Scene 3. Mi lusinga il dolce affetto
Alcina, opera, HWV 34: Act 2. Scene 12. Verdi prati
- Act 2. Scene 12. Verdi prati (04:49)
Alcina, opera, HWV 34: Act 3. Scene 3. Stà nell'Ircana
- Act 3. Scene 3. Stà nell'Ircana (05:59)
Hercules, oratorio, HWV 60: Act 1. Scene 2. There in myrtle shades reclined
Hercules, oratorio, HWV 60: Act 2. Scene 6. Cease, ruler of the day, to rise
Hercules, oratorio, HWV 60: Act 3. Scene 3. Where shall I fly?
Giulio Cesare in Egitto, opera, HWV 17: Act 1. Scene 8. Cara speme, questo core
Ariodante, opera, HWV 33: Act 1. Scene 8. Con l'ali di costanza
Ariodante, opera, HWV 33: Act 2. Scene 3. Scherza infida!
- Act 2. Scene 3. Scherza infida! (11:40)
Ariodante, opera, HWV 33: Act 3. Scene 9. Dopo notte
- Act 3. Scene 9. Dopo notte (07:14)
A look at the discography of soprano Alice Coote shows everything from "Das Lied von der Erde" to English songs, so it is not surprising that she is equipped with the technical and dramatic equipment for Handel's emotionally wide-ranging operatic arias. This is not an athletic recital but one that aims to display the performer's dramatic sense and distinctiveness in a collection of mostly well-known pieces, and Coote succeeds on both counts. She gives shape to the 11-minute Scherza infida! from "Ariodante, HWV 33," while achieving sheer vocal beauty in the opening Quando mai, spietata sorte, from "Radamisto, HWV 12a," and rage, despair, and love seem equally natural to her. For many listeners the chief attraction here from among various similar releases will be the presence of the venerable English Concert under Harry Bicket, who stays out of Coote's way and gives the orchestra a crisp, but not inexpressive smoothness that seems to make itself part of the singing itself. There is indeed lots of competition in the genre of Handel aria collections, but Coote stands out from the crowd.