The series of musical excepts from Giachino Rossini's operas, entitled "Master of Belcanto", continues with new uploads and a whole new concept.
I decided to do something a bit different for my new upload: a compilation based on a single theme which is featured prominently in all selections. The first theme is love (what else :)?). The compilation is entitled: "Tornami a dir che m'ami".
Originally, I had planned a more diverse program which would have included arias as well as duets. But when I saw the size of the content I wanted to upload (the remaining compilation is about two hours long), I decided to do love arias as a separate series.
The chosen items include love scenes from the very first to the very last operas by Rossini. We start at "L'occasione fa il ladro" with a simple pastoral duet and finish at the beginning of the second act of "Guillaume Tell" with a romantic grand scena. Such an approach gives us a chance to understand how Rossini's composing style changed with each passing year. The presented excepts are listed below with some notes detailing their characteristics.
As the whole compilation is quite large, I'm going to upload everything slowly.
1) «Se non m'inganna il core» for Alberto and Berenice from «L'occasione fa il ladro».
2) «Quanto e dolce a un'alma amante» for Florville and Sofia from "Il Signor Bruschino".
3) "L'aura che intorno spiri" for Amenaide and Tancredi from "Tancredi".
4) "Credete alle femmine" for Selim and Fiorilla from "Il turco in Italia".
5) "Quest'ultimo addio" for Torvaldo and Dorliska from "Torvaldo e Dorliska".
6) "Ah qual colpo" for Almaviva and Rosina (plus, Figaro) from "Il barbiere di Siviglia".
7) "Un soave che non e" for Ramiro and Angelina from "La Cenerentola".
8) "Amor! Possente nome" for Armida and Rinaldo from "Armida".
9) "Ah! Se puoi cosi lasciarmi" for Elcia and Osiride from "Mose in Egitto".
10) "Vivere io non potro" for Elena and Malcolm from "La donna del lago".
11) "Ah! Capisco! Non parlate" for Matilde, Corradino, Isidoro and Ginardo from "Matilde di Shabran".
12) "Ah, quel respect, Madame" for Adele & Ory from "Le comte Ory".
Again I have chosen a scene that isn't a love duet at all, at least not in this incarnation. This piece was first used, to my knowledge, in "Il viaggio a Reims" as the duet between Corinna and the French Chevalier who tries in vain to woo her. Here we have, basically, the same situation: the Count, dressed as a nun, tries to woo the Countess who is perfectly oblivious to the fact that she is alone in the room with a man who she saw a couple of hours ago (ah, that's the beauty of comic opera).
This duet is one of my personal favorites as it features one of Rossini's most beautiful melodies which, though, is used in both incarnations to, more or less, spoof the romantic love scene. We begin with the traditional double set of couplets for the lovers; then a cantabile section where both try to understand the situation (the Count tries to keep himself in check with his disguise, while the Countess tries desperately to understand the intentions of the "abbess"); finally, we get a most sweet moderato as the Countess explains her preferences when it comes to questions of love, while Ory muses on his future victory over the poor woman's heart.
John Aler and Sumi Jo (she's great for such light roles, isn't she) sing their hearts out in the present selection.