Of being a fanboy
Yes, you can accuse me of being a fanboy. I’m a Belieber. Well, not exactly of the Canadian with the interesting haircuts, but there are some artists that I just pretty much like every single album of.
This list includes the brilliant Igor Levit, the amazing Isabelle Faust, but also French soprano Sabine Devielhe. I really must pay attention that I don’t just praise an album just because they release it. At least I’ve got one example to prove that even my gods are not perfect, but these are really the exception to the rule. Anyhow, I’ll stay vigilant, and please let me know in the comments if you disagree, as always! I really like hearing your opinions.
Sabine Devielhe hasn’t faulted me yet. Whether you take her Rameau album Le Grand Théâtre de l’Amour (not yet reviewed on my blog as released before I started it), her fantastic Mozart album The Weber Sisters, her more recent release Mirages, this young Soprano and her beguiling voice are always amazing.
Handel: Italian Cantatas – Emmanuelle Haïm – Le Concert d’Astrée – Sabine Devielhe – Lea Desandre (Erato 2018)
In this album, we get another favourite of mine, Emmanuelle Haïm. I’ve first encountered her on another Händel album, Il trionfo del Tempo e del Disinganno with the great Nathalie Dessay, and have praised her fantastic Messiah.
Young French/Italian Mezzo Lea Desandre wasn’t on my radar screen yet, but after this album she certainly will be.
So what do you get on this album?
Well, you get Händel’s beauty, but in lesser known works. These cantatas, as the well written booklet tells me, were all written in Italy (hence non-surprisingly the album title). But unlike with many of the longer baroque operas, you don’t need to worry about the rather complicated and cumbersome stories. The cantatas do have stories (nicely enough shorter) as well, which you can follow thanks to the extensive booklet, but you can just be like me, and just enjoy the breathtaking beauty of this music. My personal favorite is track no. 10, Se vago rio fra sassi.
I’m a bit late to the party recommending this album, it’s already been Recording of the Month by Gramophone, has received a Choc by Classica, and 5 stars by Diapason.
So don’t hesitate and just go buy it now. You won’t regret it.
My rating: 5 stars
You can find it here (Qobuz)
5 thoughts on “Händel At Its Best with Emmanuelle Haïm, Sabine Devielhe, and Lea Desandre”
First of all, I apologize for my poor English knowledge and for which I will be a bit verbose. Still, I have to say that I totally agree with you, as it has been repeatedly.
I am a big fan of baroque music and vocal music. I also have Devieilhe’s previous three albums and Haim’s five discs. In fact, almost a year ago I was at three of their (Devieilhe, Desandre, Haim) concerts in Budapest with the same musical content. It was fantastic to hear live. It was a perfect performance.
Little sad closing, but I have to say, I can’t enjoy Devieilhe’s BD recording of Il trionfo because of the stupid stage arrangement. But this is another topic.
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Thanks Avaradi for your feedback. First of all, your English seems perfectly fine to me. I‘m also not a native speaker and this blog is read my people from all cross the globe, so you should be fine. Second, I’m jealous of your live experience. I haven’t seen any of these three brilliant musicians live yet. Third, I wasn’t aware that Devieilhe had recorded I’ll Trionfo as well, I need to check that out.
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Thank you for your kind words. It was a great happiness for me to hear these great musicians in my country. I don’t want to hurt your heart, but I have to share two links:
I’ll make sure to see them live as well!