Lorenzo Regazzo is the perfect Vivaldi bass. His coloratura technique is breathtaking - precise and fiery. His expression is feverishly passionate. His voice - sensuous, resonant, and pleasantly "covered", creates a bel canto illusion of a whole range of human sounds from an angry growl to moans and whispers, all shockingly beautiful. Regazzo's vocal ornaments are elegant and thoughtfully composed to fit both music and word. In short, very few modern singers are virtuosic enough to do this enchanting music such justice.
Notably, all aspects of Regazzo's virtuosity seem to be put entirely to the service of theatre, rendering the text believable. I have never heard such unboring recitatives before! In all the pieces the singer varies his ravishing frowning sound in his very engaging way to show conflicting sides of each character. Anger, strength as well as pathos and vulnerability are all delightfully audible. This way he turns roles into real human beings, which is a rare merit among baroque opera performers.
The album gives some room to the instrumental pieces. The orchestra (Concerto Italiano under Rinaldo Alessandrini) seems to create a very flowing but articulated atmospheric or maybe architectural background which the voice emerges from and disappears into. The music, as Regazzo notes in the booklet, feels inspired by Venice - and it shows on this recording especially, I think. The album also has a very theatrical quality partly due to the singer's style and partly because each aria is preceded with a recitative (which also nicely places the arias in context). The mood of the texts of the vocal selections is mostly somber, but the inherent optimism of Vivaldi's music, the gutsy, bright playing of the orchestra, and Regazzo's voice at once spirited, virile and full of longing makes the melancholy delicious and completely life-affirming.
This CD is great for any opera fan, and in my opinion it's a must for anyone interested in Baroque/Rococo vocal music.
Includes a String Concerto (rv 162) and arias from operas:
Armida al campo d'Egitto; Tito Manlio ; Orlando Furioso (the mad scene is amazing!); Semiramide; Il Farnace (beautiful Gelido in ogni vena); La Silvia; L'Adelaide; L'Olimpiade.
1. Armida Al Campo D'Egitto, Rv699-A : Allegro
2. Armida Al Campo D'Egitto, Rv699-A : ...
3. Armida Al Campo D'Egitto, Rv699-A : Allegro
4. Armida Al Campo D'Egitto, Rv699-A : Recitativo
5. Armida Al Campo D'Egitto, Rv699-A : Chi Alla Colpa
6. Tito Manlio, Rv738-A : Recitativo
7. Tito Manlio, Rv738-A : Se Il Cor Guerriero
8. Orlando Furioso, Rvanh84 : Recitativo
9. Orlando Furioso, Rvanh84 : Nel Profondo, Cieco Mondo
10. Orlando Furioso, Rvanh84 : Ah Sleale, Ah Spergiura
11. Orlando Furioso, Rvanh84 : Io Ti Getto Elmo, Ed Usbergo
12. Semiramide, Rv733 : Con La Face Di Megera
13. Il Farnace, Rv711-D : ...
14. Il Farnace, Rv711-D : Andante
15. Il Farnace, Rv711-D : ...
16. Il Farnace, Rv711-D : Recitativo
17. Il Farnace, Rv711-D : Gelido In Ogni Vena
18. La Silvia, Rv734 : Terribile E Lo Scempio
19. La Silvia, Rv734 : Recitativo
20. La Silvia, Rv734 : Fiume, Che Torbido
21. String Concerto in B Maj, Rv162 : Allegro
22. String concerto in B Maj, Rv162 : Largo
23. String Concerto in B Maj, Rv162 : Allegro Assai
24. L'Adelaide, Rv695 : Recitativo
25. L'Adelaide, Rv695 : Vincera La Mia Costanza
26. L'Olimpiade, Rv725 : Or Piu Tremar Non Voglio
27. Tito Manlio, Rv738-A : Recitativo
28. Tito Manlio, Rv738-A : Rabbia Che Accendasi