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I must admit that I approached this disc with low expectations: a not-so-funny and obscure early comic opera by a major composer, starring singers generally not known on the international circuit, recorded live at a festival I suspect few will have heard of unless they live locally – held in Rieti, Lazio (not too far from Rome). None of which sounds particularly promising, but it’s actually quite enjoyable. Firstly, it is well recorded with a pleasingly direct quality of sound. And whilst nobody here is a great performer, everyone is accomplished: Martino Faggiani conducts the Roma Sinfonietta with some élan, and the Belcanto Chorus is idiomatic; Mikheil Kiria and Simone Alberti are nicely contrasted as Belfiore and Baron Kelbar; Quintavalla’s incisive soprano and Angela Nisi’s Giulietta, both fluent, make another good pairing; and Marco Frusoni’s lyric tenor is pleasingly sweet. This is potentially worth investigating if you’re interested in the admittedly slight piece.

Francis Muzzu Read the full review on Agora Classica


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