Auber: Le Domino noir; Gustave III

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RELEASE DATE: 11/08/2017
2 CD
Through scholarship, performance and recording, Richard Bonynge has done more than any other modern-day musician to advance the cause of Daniel-Francois-Esprit Auber, the foremost composer of opera-comique in nineteenth-century Paris. What he wrote was `Simple, joyous and unsophisticated music,` according to Bonynge: this is his sole recording of a complete opera by Auber.

Le Domino Noir is a tale of amorous intrigue in royal Madrid, set in the theatrically promising context of a masked ball and a convent. Drama and libretto were fashioned by Eugene Scribe, who later worked with Rossini, Bellini, Verdi and many others, but he formed an especially long-lasting and fruitful partnership with Auber, and this is one of their joint masterpieces: the embodiment in music and drama of the witty, polished, and worldly Parisian life of the time. The music sparkles; it has lightness and facility; it is essentially graceful and elegant.

When it was first released in 1995, this Decca recording was universally welcomed as a significant marker in the revival of Auber`s reputation: he was writing for singers of virtuoso technique with a lightness and grace that is not commonly found in our own time, but Bonynge assembled a cast which was more than equal to the challenge.

In the booklet notes, Jeremy Commons sets Le Domino Noir in the context of Auber`s long career and his happy partnership with Scribe. There is also a synopsis and a performance note in which Bonynge explains his decisions to cut and reshape the dialogue and to elaborate some of the vocal lines after the common practice of Auber`s day. A complementary issue on Eloquence (482 7730) surveys Bonynge`s quarter-century of Auber on record in arias, overtures and ballet music.

Le Domino noir

Angèle d’Olivarès – Sumi Jo
Brigitte de San Lucar – Isabelle Vernet
Horace de Massarena – Bruce Ford
Count Juliano – Patrick Power
Jacinthe – Martine Olmeda
Gil Perez – Jules Bastin
Ursule – Doris Lamprecht
La tourière – Jocelyne Taillon
Lord Elfort – Gilles Cachemaille

Gustave III, ou le Bal masqué – Ballet Music

London Voices
English Chamber Orchestra
Richard Bonynge

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