A review of RCL cd release of Cimarosa's opera "Il Matrimonio Segreto" conducted by Simone Perugini.
Online PR News – 26-October-2017 – London – "Che si suoni, che si canti", composes Cimarosa on the latest verses with which Giovanni Bertati concludes the comic masterpiece "Il Matrimonio Segreto", which premiered at the Burgtheater in Vienna on 7 February 1792.rnEarly on, as many of the melodies already know, "Il Matrimonio Segreto", although indicated by its authors as Dramma Giocoso (synonym of comic opera), is a very complicated work in many ways: first of all it is not a comic, because in more than one point the plot, which initially appears to be carried out within the canons typical of the eighteenth-century farcean opera, suddenly assumes pathetic, proto-romantic traits, as it was said then, if not dramatic.rnCarolina's character, for examplethe very young Pauline secret bride promised by his father to the spotted Count Robinson, from the vaguely populous, simple and unimaginable dramatic condition, passes in the second act in particular to take on dramatic valor and dramatics that oblige the interpreter to constantly change the interpretative record during the drama.rnIn addition, Il Matrimonio Segreto is a very long-lasting work (exceeds, if performed in full, the three hours of performance) and engages both vocally and scenically the singers in a really insidious and exhausting manner. The scoring of Cimarosa, then perhaps influenced on this occasion by its recent discovery of the Mozarts masterpieces that in those same years were represented in the German area, is always to be not only formally and, say, psychologically refined but not exempt from many virtuosic cues of difficult execution, especially in the parts entrusted to the arched instruments.rnIf Mozart's influenceappears to be evident in Cimarosa's music, Da Ponte's dramaturgy is also felt in the libretto conceived by Bertati: both Le Nozze Di FIgaro and Il Matrimonio Segreto begin with two duets of the protagonists and separated by a short recitativo. Il Matrimonio Segreto trio in the first act between Carolina, Elisetta and Fidalma almost resembles Le Nozze Di Figaro's duet between Susanna and Marcellina, with almost identical dramaturgy and musical solutions. In addition, Cimarosa seems to anticipate the times as well: the duet at the beginning of the second act between Geronimo and Count Robinson, Se Fiato In Corpo Avete, you have the same solutions that Rossini made immortal in the duet between the two baritons at the beginning of the second act of La Cenerentola. Rossini, without any doubt, is back to the Cimarosa model, which again, in the year that La Cenerentola came to the scene for the first time in 1817, was well placed in the collective memory of the public.rnIl Matrimonio Segreto, last but not least, is a famous work (the only Italian work of the second half of the eighteenth century that has consistently remained in the repertoires of all the theaters of the world), and therefore dealing with a new record recording means of course dealing with other proposals often entrusted to the wise and expert hands of Daniel Barenboim or Arturo Toscanini and remained paradigmatic in the world of understanding and interpreting Cimarosa's work.rnThis is a necessary premise, All those who have a brilliance, said at the beginning of this review so much to quote Bertati and in the record release of ll Matrimonio Segreto Produced and Distributed by Rc Record Classic Label all the interpreters are really pleasantly surprisingly brilliant in a test so complex and, in many ways, risky. Beginning with the delightful, agile, extremely talented Carolina of the young English singer Addie Lansbury, who, though sometimes traded by an Italian pronouncement that was not impeccable, proved a psychological investigation of the character and vocal qualities of exceptional quality.rnThe paysant character, to which we mentions a few lines above, essentially expressed by Bertati and Cimarosa in the air of the first act Perdonate, Signor Mio, inter alia inert in a writing constantly pointing to the acute that could fatigue (if not exactly to pause) not a little bit of a still unknowing executive practice of the time, is resolved by Lansbury with magnificent vocal lightness and with that sense of acute spirit that must never be lacking in the interpretation of such genres; Lansbury then gives her body a more penetrating and deep voice in the crucial moment of Carolina's dramatic change: her Ma Voi Siete Tanti Cani! with whom Carolina, at best of despair, because Father Geronimo, with his sister Elisetta and her aunt Fidalma, decided to close her in the convent, deeply engulfed the wonderful quintet of the second act Deh! Lasciate ch'io respiri.rnThe character of Paolino (tenor) has to face, in addition to the numerous ensembles and recitativos, one of the most famous, celebrated and complex arias of the entire operatic repertoire of the second half of the eighteenth century: Pria che spunti in ciel l'aurora, whose main theme is introduced from a wonderful solo of the clarinet gently accompanied by the arches. The interpretation provided by Jaylen Parker in this recording, also English, is perhaps one of the highest points of the release. No sign of fatigue overwhelms the gentle voice (rich in colors, voice-of-mouth, ability to catch acne with softness and incisiveness) of Parker. Helped and exalted by the timing changes by the conductor Simone Perugini, Parker is at ease both in the average voice and in the acoustic voice, both in the lyrical moments of lyrical and in the more exquisitely virtuous ones.rnExcellent also the trials of Florinda Benini, in the role of Elisetta and mezzo-soprano Carlene Harris engaged in Fidalma's. Benin gives us an adamantine air in the second act, Se Son Vendicata, perhaps the only weak moment, Cimarosa forgive us, of the work. An air of pure virtuosity, perhaps a bit 'fine to itself and composed to satisfy and meet the golden age of Giuseppina Nettelet, who played the role of the evening of the Viennese debut. Despite the musical weakness of the air, Benini (a very good and lively interpreter of the duet with Count Robinson Il Parlar Di Carolina just before the grand finale of the opera) interprets his air with rich colors and does not save himself in artificial fires vocals when the air requires it. Carlene Harris seems to be the most entertained interpreter of the group: his very humorous interpretation of the air It is true that in my house I am the mistress, it is distinguished for this particular very obvious aspect: Harris has a world to play this role and wants make listeners listen to this fun.rnThe striking vocal cast of this release ends with the presence of two bass baritones that define excellent looks almost limitative and unfair: Irving Hussain in the role of Count Robinson and Roberto Vicarelli, a young Florentine Baritone, in Geronimo's. While expressing a personal opinion, I think I am not too far from the objectivity that the interpretation of the air Udite, Tutti Udite by Vicarelli, what is better, at least so, can still be heard to this day. Improsiosita by a lively and varied rhythm held by Perugini, Vicarelli offers the opportunity to listen to and enjoy this fun (and musically striking) air in all its most intimate expressive shades. The majestic incipit, the funniest engravings and the loud speaking style (making this song difficult to interpret precisely because of the contemporary presence of all these expressive and technical registers) are expertly elaborated by Vicarelli - in a certain state of grace - and posts with an undeniable lightness that makes listening to this song very enjoyable.rnThe same observations could be made for Hussain in the role of the fanciful, comical, but also with a good heart and character, Conte Robison who incarnates, in the idea of Bertati and Cimarosa, all the positive sides of the nobility of the time (though bonariously putting, at some moments, in a respectable saloon). Il Matrimonio Segreto moreover, is certainly not a work of revolutionary ideas, but it is a job well-founded in the society of the time and is careful not to hurt the susceptibility of the ruling class. But the moments of satire (a satire that does not punch, but, at best, delicately craving) are certainly lacking and in this record release are constantly emphasized and highlighted.rnPlaced with standing ovation ideal for Harmoniae Templum Chamber Orchestra, which continues to prove the high technical and interpretative quality achieved over the years. Simone Perugini, the orchestra director, is undoubtedly the lighthouse, the polar star of this magical interpretation. The musicologist's work is cleverly integrated with a special conducting art, the theatrical instinct and the perfect knowledge of the repertoire faced by the Florentine musician. Maestro Perugini gives a second life to Cimarosa, he can infuse his music to that third dimension that assures flesh and life; his interpretive choices, often unpublished and in some cases even risky, are always fair and perfectly harmonized with the score he is performing. It would even be like us, exactly as it is said to have happened at the first performance of the work, to ask all the interpreters of this edition an integral one after the first listening: but today, fortunately, it's all easier than then: just press the play button to enjoy every time you want this jewel.