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Galuppi Inimico delle donne

Anna Maria Panzarella (Agnesina), Liesbeth Devos (Xunchia), Priscille Laplace (Kam-sì), Federica Carnevale (Zyda), Filippo Adami (Zon-zon), Alberto Rinaldi (Geminiano), Juri Gorodezki (Ly-lam) & Daniele Zanfardino (Si-sin) Opera Royal de Wallonie, Rinaldo Alessandrini (conductor) & Stefano Mazzonis di Pralafera (director) Frédéric Pineau (costumes)

Opera de Wallonie, Liège, February 2011

Dynamic: DVD 33677

A pleasant light Baroque comedy opera, which was popular in its time and influenced Mozart. The plot turns around a Prince who doesn't like women but is expected to marry and settles for a potential bride who doesn't like men...

Something akin to the Love of Three Oranges opera, whose Prince can't laugh...

The music is unremarkable staple 18th C fare, but it is helped here by the expert music direction of Rinaldo Allesandrini, very much seen in vigorous action, as there is not a sunken pit *.

The singing is decent, but the real strength of this release is the over-the-top extravagant costuming of Frédéric Pinau.

The second act is genuinely funny and builds to a splendid finale, which apparently influenced those of Mozart.

The third act (as with most Haydn's operas) is a bit perfunctory.

The video production is adequate, giving a feeling that you're there in the stalls, and close-ups are used judiciously.

Peter Grahame Woolf

See an appreciative review of the live performances in Liiège.

* - - Rinaldo Allesandrini is the contemporary Monteverdi expert.
We have recommended his Naive CDs effusively, and collectors who prefer the visual experience should not pass the his L'OrfeoDVD - -