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Cavalli: L'Ipermestra

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Cavalli: L'Ipermestra
Cavalli: L'Ipermestra


The world premiere recording of Cavalli's opera L'Ipermestra, dated 1654-1658, from La Sfera Armoniosa and conductor Mike Fentross with a wonderful cast of soloists including Elena Monti. Emanuela Galli and Marcel Beekman. The recording was made following a live stage performance in Utrecht, 2006. This opera is a real discovery from a musical point of view and its value is enhanced by a superb performance by the soloists and orchestra.

Working in 17th-century Venice soon after the world's first public opera houses opened there, composer Francesco Cavalli had no tradition to follow. He gave his fertile imagination free rein, tinkering with the brand-new art form to create the lively Venetian style of opera, with its melodious arias, sprightly dance rhythms, free-wheeling mythological or historical plots and generous dollops of comedy. Like most of Cavalli's operas, L'Ipermestra wasn't performed between the late 17th century and recent years.

In 1658, on the occasion of the recent birth of King Philip IV of Spain's first son (prince Felipe Prospero), the Grand Duchy of Tuscany celebrated the royal event with one of the most magnificent operas ever staged in Florence: l'Ipermestra by Giovanni Andrea Moniglia and Francesco Cavalli.

This opera originated from an unusual mix of court culture and the fashionable "opera alla veneziana", one of the most in vogue entertainments in Europe at the time. However, the main patron of this sign of alliance with the Spanish crown was not the grand duke Ferdinand II de' Medici, but his notorious brother, cardinal Giovan Carlo de' Medici: relentless operagoer and patron of singers, musicians, and academies. L'Ipermestra was one of his most important projects, and its origin, hidden for centuries, has only recently come to light.

An account of the opera was printed in 1658, yet although the publicity for the 1658 premiere was so convincing that everyone believed the opera had been written just for that occasion, we have proof of the existence of L'Ipermestra as early as 1654 four years prior to the Spanish prince's birth.

Artists Elena Monti - Soprano Emanuela Galli - Mezzo Soprano Gaelle Le Roi - Soprano Marcel Beekman - Tenor Sergio Foresti - Bass Mark Tucker - Tenor La Sfera Armoniosa Mike Fentross

Interview with Mike Fentross


Sunday Times Album of the Week "Elena Monti and Emanuela Galli are superb in their delivery" "Both the music and drama blossom in the mind's eye" -Hugh Canning


  1. Name
  2. Cavalli: Atto Primo - Sinfonia from opera Doriclea
  3. Cavalli: LImpermestra - Atto Primo - Scena 1 Linceo, Ipermestra - Cortile regio
  4. Atto Primo - Scena 2 Arbante
  5. Atto Primo - Scena 3 Arbante, Elisa
  6. Atto Primo - Scena 4 Elisa
  7. Atto Primo - Scena 5 Elisa, Berenice
  8. Atto Primo - Scena 6 Berenice
  9. Atto Primo - Scena 7 Danao, Ipermestra
  10. Atto Primo - Scena 8 Ipermestra
  11. Atto Primo - Scena 9 Linceo
  12. Atto Primo - Scena 11 Linceo, Ipermestra
  13. Atto Primo - Scena 12 Ipermestra
  14. Atto Primo - Scena 13 Ipermestra, Berenice
  15. Atto Primo - Scena 14 Ipermestra, Danao, Berenice sotto una portiera
  16. Atto Primo - Scena 15 Berenice
  17. Atto Secondo - Scena 1 Ipermestra, Elisa - Prigione
  18. Atto Secondo - Scena 2 Ipermestra, Berenice
  19. Atto Secondo - Scena 3 Ipermestra
  20. Atto Secondo - Scena 4 Ipermestra, Arbante chosserva
  21. Atto Secondo - Scena 5 Arbante, Elisa
  22. Atto Secondo - Scena 6 Arbante, Elisa, Danao
  23. Atto Secondo - Scena 7 Danao, Arbante
  24. Atto Secondo - Scena 8 Danao
  25. Atto Secondo - Scena 9 Danao, Ipermestra
  26. Atto Secondo - Scena 10 Ipermestra
  27. Atto Secondo - Scena 11 Ipermestra, Elisa, Berenice
  28. Atto Secondo - Scena 12 Ipermestra
  29. Atto Secondo - Scena 21 Linceo
  30. Atto Secondo - Scena 22 Linceo, Arbante
  31. Atto Secondo - Scena 23 Linceo
  32. Atto Secondo - Scena 24 Linceo, Elisa
  33. Atto Secondo - Scena 25 Linceo, Elisa, Berenice
  34. Atto Secondo - Scena 26 Danao
  35. Atto Secondo - Battalla de Barabaso yerno de Satana 1650 by A 1. Atto Terza - Scena 1 instrumental
  36. Atto Terza - Scena 1 instrumental
  37. Atto Terza - Scena 2 Ipermestra, Campagna della Torre
  38. Atto Terza - Scena 3 Ipermestra
  39. Atto Terza - Scena 4 Ipermestra, Elisa
  40. Atto Terza - Scena 5 Arbante
  41. Atto Terza - Scena 7 Linceo
  42. Atto Terza - Scena 8 Linceo, Elisa, Berenice
  43. Atto Terza - Scena 9 Elisa, Berenice
  44. Atto Terza - Scena 10 Berenice
  45. Atto Terza - Scena 11 Ipermestra sopra la Torre
  46. Atto Terza - Scena 12 Ipermestra e Berenice sopra la Torre; Linceo in strada
  47. Atto Terza - Scena 13 Berenice, Elisa
  48. Atto Terza - Scena 15 Linceo, Ipermestra
  49. Atto Terza - Scena 16 Linceo, Ipermestra, Arbante
  50. Atto Terza - Scena 17 Linceo, Ipermestra, Arbante, Elisa, Berenicendrea Falconieri
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