[It’s not new, but it’s still a nice soundtrack for a Sunday night: ARTE is reairing the cut version of the 2014 Théâtre du Champs-Elysées Monteverdi Gala with the Le Concert Astrée under Emmanuelle Haïm, available on ARTE Concert as of August 7th, 6:30 p.m. (UTC+2). – Toti Lehtipuu, Rolando Villazón, Emmanuelle Haïm, members of Le Concert d’Astrée in concert in Paris. Photo Credit: Camera Lucida via ARTE)
I’m also simply fond of the photo because it’s (almost) all effortlessly cool continuo ladies at work who are eyeing the boycandy on the side, if at all, without any fawning, while the men are showcased in their singing.
There is a relatively large cast list for this concert, and it’s not limited to Early Music singers:
- Magdalena Kožená
- Rolando Villazón
- Emiliano Gonzalez Toro
- Topi Lehtipuu
- Nahuel Di Pierro
- Lenneke Ruiten
- Pascal Bertin
- Katherine Watson
I didn’t listen to this in 2014 and I am curious about it because I have mixed feelings about voices with a modern education singing *early* Early Music, but Haïm has a knack for adapting singers into the style. Villazón has done the “Combattimento” with her, also on record, and while I still don’t find his approach organic in this kind of music, I appreciate his sense of drama and storytelling for Monteverdi.
Another case is Kožená, whom I deeply enjoy with classical and romantic/late romantic repertory: I was not sold, which I may have mentioned before, on her “Lettere amorose” recording because I find her idiomatic approach not that well-suited for Monteverdi (too big, too broad) and because she does not acknowledge early Baroque ornamentation conventions. This is one style where a purist declamation of “what is on the page”, however intelligently and rhetorically thought, will not cut it. So I really want to hear how she works with Haïm, and how Haïm works with her.
And, look, there is more Lenneke Ruiten, too. Another one whom I am curious about in early Baroque repertory.