BARTOLI CONTINUES HER STEFFANI MISSION WITH STABAT MATER
Cecilia Bartoli continues her groundbreaking exploration of the work of Italian composer Agostino Steffani with the release of a major sacred work, his iconic Stabat Mater. The opening solo of the Stabat Mater was featured on the Mission DVD. The complete work, regarded as Steffani’s masterpiece, is featured alongside other sacred pieces for chorus, orchestra and soloists. Bartoli leads an array of internationally celebrated singers including countertenor Franco Fagioli, the bass Salvo Vitale and the two young German tenors Daniel Behle and Julian Prégardien. Diego Fasolis conducts the authentic instrument forces of I Barocchisti and the chorus of RSI Lugano.
Steffani’s Stabat Mater, completed shortly before he died in 1728, has been described as the most powerful expression of his religious fervour. At almost half an hour it is the largest-scale, most complex and heartfelt of his compositions outside of his operas.
The album is completed by world premiere recordings of the best of Steffani’s remaining sacred music, including Sperate in Deo and Laudate Pueri. These are scored for orchestra, chorus and soloists featuring two young Baroque-specialist sopranos Nuria Rial and Yetzabel Arias Fernandez alongside Behle, Prégardien and Vitale.
The Stabat Mater release is an immensely strong follow-up to Mission, which achieved Gold sales in France and won Bartoli the “Swiss Award in Culture 2012”, the most important national award in Switzerland. The Financial Times Germany said of the recording: “La Bartoli sings as enthrallingly as ever, and with this new CD reasserts her place as No. 1 in the international diva firmament.” Musical Toronto wrote: “This is a showcase for the art of singing at its very finest, where every note, inflection, breath, trill and phrase serves the art of translating the score into a meaningful experience for the listener.”
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