Equally known for his live performances and musicological work in establishing new performing practices for early opera, Alan Curtis enjoyed a fruitful career. A scholar, as well as a conductor and harpsichordist, Curtis edited several important works with an appreciation for authenticity, effective performance, and – in the case of opera – stage-worthiness. Several of his best recordings were issued in the 1990s and in the new millennium. Curtis studied first at Michigan State University and attained his bachelor's degree there in 1955.
In 2009 the music world celebrates the 250th anniversary of Georg Friedich Handel's death.
"Caro Amor" presents on 2 CDs the most beautiful and expressive arias from his most famous operas and oratorios, performed by the best in their field: Ian Bostridge ("Ombra mai fu", "Where'er you walk"), Maria Bayo ("Lascia ch'io pianga"), Vesselina Kasarova ("Caro Amor"), Nuria Rial and Lawrence Zazzo ("Alma mia, dolce ristoro", "Caro amico amplesso"), Angelika Kirchschlager ("Qui d'Amor," "Scherza Infida","Cara Spem"), Marijana Mijanovic ("Qual nave smarrita"), Annette Dasch ("Ah Crudele") and instrumental gems, played by Gabor Boldoczki ("Arrival of the Queen of Sheba"), Il Complesso Barocco, Kammerorchester Basel, etc. The double CD will be released as a high quality 2 CD digipak with a very attractive cover and is the right product for the many fans of beautiful Baroque music.
Rinaldo by G.F. Handel, first performed on 27th February 1711 in London, belongs to the short but rich series of operas on magical subjects that the composer produced between 1710 and 1735. Both the musical and dramatic material of the opera are handled in eighteenth century fashion, especially evident in the arias which are succesful in melodic as well as in psychological terms and in the"recitativo secco"which Is perfectly cantabile, though often much reduced since the opera's English audience would have found the Italian text incomprehensible. We should not however overlook the eighteenth century mould of the general organisation of the work. The material Itself, supernatural and fantastic, entails a somewhat lightweight aspect in situations and characteristics which are only apparently coherent and which relate to a narrative process that is fairly free in its treatment of plot. Moreover the insertion of magic and the irrational, which were favoured by the stagecraft of the day, serves to accentuate its typically baroque character.
This set contains 8 operas by Handel in 22 CDs. This set is an essential for Handel completists in that it includes Kuijken's excellent "Alessandro." It is one of Handel's best operatic creations.