Classical home listening: Semele at Ally Pally, Russian cello sonatas and more | The Guardian

Louise Alder excels in a vibrant live recording of Handel’s sparkling opera-oratorio; perfect poise from Hee-Young Lim; and Eva-Maria Westbroek in Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk• Rampant with glorious music, licentious sexual adventure and gods and mortals behaving badly, Handel’s Semele has firmly established itself (after neglect) as a favourite. That renewal began in the second half of the last century. A notably memorable 1999 ENO staging (with Carolyn Sampson) later surfaced elsewhere, starring, among others, Cecilia Bartoli. In the British soprano Louise Alder we have a new and brilliant young Semele, who sang the role in a semi-staging at London’s Alexandra Palace in May 2019. That live performance – with the novelty of audience noise – is now out as a three-disc album on SDG, with the Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists, conducted by John Eliot Gardiner. Continue reading…

Louise Alder excels in a vibrant live recording of Handel’s sparkling opera-oratorio; perfect poise from Hee-Young Lim; and Eva-Maria Westbroek in Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk

• Rampant with glorious music, licentious sexual adventure and gods and mortals behaving badly, Handel’s Semele has firmly established itself (after neglect) as a favourite. That renewal began in the second half of the last century. A notably memorable 1999 ENO staging (with Carolyn Sampson) later surfaced elsewhere, starring, among others, Cecilia Bartoli. In the British soprano Louise Alder we have a new and brilliant young Semele, who sang the role in a semi-staging at London’s Alexandra Palace in May 2019. That live performance – with the novelty of audience noise – is now out as a three-disc album on SDG, with the Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists, conducted by John Eliot Gardiner.

Continue reading…


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