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Naïve’s Vivaldi Edition, a plan to record all the composer’s major works, began ten years ago using a lot of material then recently rediscovered, including 15 operas. The best of these was undoubtedly Orlando Furioso, first performed in 1727 and based on Ariosto’s epic poem. The conductor Jean- Christophe Spinosi decided to restore the opera and the result was performed in concert halls throughout Europe as well as being recorded on CD. Now it has been given a stage production at the Théâtre des Champs Elysées. The result is thrillingly captured on DVD. Pierre Audi directs a production that floats between reality and stylisation, relying heavily on lighting for its effects. The singers, including Jennifer Larmore and Veronica Cangemi, are totally committed while Marie-Nicole Lemieux, inviting comparison with Marilyn Horne as Orlando, more than holds her own. Counter-tenor Philippe Jaroussky (Ruggiero) is a real discovery. Spinosi conducts like a man who knows the score backwards. A production to see again and again.

RIchard Fawkes Read the full review on Agora Classica


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