George Frideric Handel: Semele
English Baroque Soloists
Louise Alder (Semele), Hugo Hymas (Jupiter), Lucile Richardot (Juno / Ino), Carlo Vistoli (Athamas), Gianluca Buratto (Cadmus / Somnus), Emily Owen (Iris), Angela Hicks (Cupid), Peter Davoren (Apollo), Angharad Rowlands (Endless Pleasure), Christopher Webb (High Priest)
In Spring 2019, the Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists, led by John Eliot Gardiner, presented a critically-acclaimed European tour of Handel’s opera Semele, including Alexandra Palace Theatre in London, where this live recording took place. Before the tour, Semele had not been performed by John Eliot Gardiner and the Monteverdi ensembles since they originally recorded it in the 1980s and this recording gives audiences the chance to hear and to see a fuller version of the work, notably with some passages by Handel very rarely heard in modern performances. Close examination of Handel’s autograph (held in the British Library) and some fragmentary sketches (held in the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge) reveals the complex series of revisions made by Handel.
A glamorous team of young soloists joins the Monteverdi ensembles to bring the story of Semele to life, including celebrated English soprano Louise Alder, who takes on the title role, with the young tenor Hugo Hymas portraying the amorous Jupiter.
A production by The Monteverdi Choir & Orchestras Limited
Recorded at the Alexandra Palace Theatre, London, United Kingdom
George Frideric Handel: Semele (Dramatic Oratorio in three acts), Libretto by William Congreve