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In another production filmed at the Rossini Festival, Pesaro, Lluis Pasqual chooses to make the action a play within a play, this time as a late nineteenth century entertainment. It doesn’t add anything to an already daftstory; in fact it makes it seem even more unlikely in several places. So putting that to one side, at least the musical values provide great pleasure. Paolo Carignani conducts with panache and the orchestra and chorus are good (especially the sopranos). Yijie Shi’s Ory sails through the multitudinous notes with aplomb but the staging means that he comes across as rather weedy and camp. Laura Polverelli’s mezzo suits Isolier well, she has the technique and the panache to make the most of her opportunities. Natalia Gavrilan’s rich mezzo also makes much of Ragonde. As Adèle, María José Moreno’s soprano makes the extraordinary demands of the role sound almost easy – she breezes through the most densely-written fioratura with thrilling ease. It’s not entirely a case of listen with closed eyes, but the visuals do spoil some tremendous vocalising.

Francis Muzzu Read the full review on Agora Classica

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