This is something of an informal recording made at the oldest standing enclosed theatre in the world (Teatro Olimpico). It sounds like a chamber opera (if such a term exists). Pleasant singing, quaint, not overplayed. One of four modern versions of a relatively popular Vivaldi opera (his first), released on various labels (Bongiovanni, Chandos, Brilliant, Naive). This Brilliant version actually stands out for its instrumental tempo, which is fair compared to the (somewhat hyperactive) Naive and Chandos versions; I'd say it's reminiscent of a well played Four Seasons, moving along steadily. The acoustics are also more balanced here, all of the instruments shine through with the vocals…Amazon.com
This recording is noteworthy since back in 1978 it had become a precursor to the great Vivaldi Opera revival, including the phenomenal production of the same "Orlando Furioso" by San Francisco opera again with Marilyn Horn roughly 10 years later.
Due to this recording under the baton of Claudio Scimone being a pioneer, stepping on the rediscovered terra incognita of Vivaldi opera, the musical director had to resolve many problems, such as dramatic "reduction" of the text, which originally would accommodate for 5-6 hours of on-stage action; available voices and ornamentation of da capo arias, improvisation of cadenzas, and realization of appoggiaturas.
Antonio Vivaldi wrote hundreds of largely famous instrumental works, and his glorious church music is well known; but it wasn’t until recent decades that his operas – of which he is said to have created more than fifty – were resurrected. Orlando furioso occupies a central and very significant place among Vivaldi’s works. Not only does the whole score of this opera demonstrate its composer’s full, creative maturity, but its outstanding features are also an extraordinary musical beauty, an attractive recitative line and a balance thus created between the various parts of the dramatic and musical whole. This exceptional musical achievement was no doubt partly due to the famous theme of the original story, as well as the literary and dramatic qualities of a fi rst-rate libretto. Pier Luigi Pizzi’s 1979 production of Orlando furioso in Verona marked the beginning of contemporary international interest in Antonio Vivaldi’s operas. Ten years later the same director once more produced this work at the San Francisco Opera, where it was a great success.
The VIVALDI METAL PROJECT is a music creation born from an idea conceived and developed by Italian keyboard player, composer and producer MISTHERIA (solo artist, Bruce Dickinson, Rob Rock, Roy Z, Artlantica). The project is a symphonic-metal opera based on Antonio Vivaldi’s Baroque masterwork “The Four Seasons”, featuring more than 130 amazing metal and classical artists, orchestra, a string quartet and three choirs from all over the world. The album features 14 tracks - all the movements from Antonio Vivaldi's original score plus two original new songs written by MISTHERIA. The impressive roster of artists probably makes this titanic album the biggest all-star project ever!
In 2000 the contralto Marie-Nicole Lemieux became the first Canadian to win the First Prize as well as the Special Prize for Lieder at the Queen Elisabeth International Music Competition in Belgium. She has recorded for numerous labels, and now enjoys an exclusive contract with the Naïve label, for which she has recorded the title roles in Vivaldi’s operas Griselda and Orlando furioso. Her first recital CD of French mélodies (L’Heure exquise) was much praised by the critics. In 2008 Naïve released a recording of Vivaldi sacred works in which she sings the famous Stabat Mater. This was followed by the same composer’s La fida ninfa. In 2009 Naïve released a recital of Schumann songs with the pianist Daniel Blumenthal and a programme of Vivaldi arias with the Ensemble Matheus under Jean-Christophe Spinosi.