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Philippe Jaroussky. "Ombra mai fu" ( Serse ) by G.- F. Händel.

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Published on May 13, 2012

Philippe Jaroussky, countertenor

Live recording from the City Recital Hall, Angel Place, Sydney, broadcast on ABC Classic FM Radio at 06.03.2010. It was the first encore .
Australian Brandenburg Orchestra
Paul Dyer, harpsichord / director .

G.-F. Händel ( 1685 - 1759)
Aria "Ombra mai fù " ( 1 Act ) from the Opera "Serse" (HWV 40), first performed in London at the King's Theatre, Haymarket , on 15 April 1738.
The libretto is adapted by an unknown hand from that by Silvio Stampiglia for an earlier opera of the same name by Giovanni Bononcini in 1694. Stampiglia's libretto was itself based on one by Nicolò Minato that was set by Francesco Cavalli in 1654.
The main role of the Persian King Xerxes sang Gaetano Majorano (Caffarelli), it was his first and only one season (1737 / 38 ) on the London stage, and Händel composed for his new Primo Uomo the roles of Faramondo ( premiered on 3th. January 1738, 8 performances) , Serse ( only 5 performances) and in pasticcio "Alessandro severo".
Unlike his other operas for London, Händel included comic (buffo) elements in "Serse" , but this Opera wasn´t an success because of " the libretto not old enough " and " the music too modern ".
Caffarelli left London quite disappointed.

Ombra mai fù
di vegetabile,
cara ed amabile,
soave più.

**********************************************
The photoshoot by Thomas Laisné (c)

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