Mythical Heroines of Baroque Opera.
– François Couperin: Les Nations: L’Espagnole
– Jean-Baptiste Lully: Armide: Enfin il est en ma puissance
– Jean-Baptiste Lully: Atys: Sommeil
– André Campra: Le Carnaval de Venise: Mes yeux fermez-vous à jamais
– Jean-Baptiste Stuck: Polydore: C’en est donc fait
– Jean-Marie Leclair : Scylla et Glaucus: selections of arias and instrumental pieces
– Jean-Philippe Rameau: Hippolyte et Aricie: Cruelle mère des amours
– Jean-Philippe Rameau: Le Temple de la Gloire: Air tendre pour les muses
– Joseph-Nicolas-Pancrace Royer: Zaïde reine de Grenade: Dieux des amants fidèles
– François Francœur & François Rebel: Scanderberg: C’en est fait
What do the sorceress Armida, the Cretan royal daughter Phaedra and the mythological temptress Circe have all in common? Their beauty and troubled fate, of course. Their stories, however, are also linked with the sea by which their dramas unfold. Often, the sea itself is the cause of these femmes-fatales’ predicament.
The French appellation is quite appropriate in this case since the sensibility of the heroines will be rendered by the fabulous soprano Véronique Gens from France who regularly collaborates with luminaries such as William Christie, René Jacobs or Philippe Herreweghe. This time she will be accompanied by Les Ambassadeurs conducted by the flutist Alexis Kossenko, who are great experts on the music of Lully, Rameau, Leclair and Couperin.
The opening performance of the ‘Mediterranean’ edition of the Summer Festivities of Early Music by eminent French musicians will thus remind us that the sea is closely related to female heroines, also because the sea itself is feminine in French: la mer.