Monday, September 20, 2010

Scarlatti A - Il Primo Omicidio overo Cain- Jacobs

This oratorio for six voices concerns, as the title implies, the murder of Abel by Cain. Though the possibility of one Baroque da capo aria after another Alessandro Scarlattimay strike fear into your heart, fear not: Scarlatti sprinkles arias throughout, interspersing them with dramatic recitatives, duets, a trio, and brief, scene-setting orchestral interludes with a small but colorfully used group of instruments, all beautifully played here. Moreover, the voice parts vary: Adam and Eve are tenor and soprano, respectively; Cain and Abel are alto and soprano; and the voice of God and Lucifer are countertenor and bass. For a two-and-a-quarter hour oratorio from 1707, this work never tires the ear or emotions: A nice listening experience, all the way round. --Robert Levine

ape, scans

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