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Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Charles Daniels (Orfeo), Faye Newton (Euridice), Emily Van Evera (Messaggiera), Clare Wilkinson (Speranza/Proserpina), Curtis Streetman (Caronte), Christopher Purves (Plutone), Anna Dennis (Ninfa), Guy Pelc (Apollo), Rodrigo del Pozo, Simon Wall, Gareth Morrell Robert Macdonald (Pastori), Richard Latham, Gareth Morrell, Curtis Streetman, (Spiriti infernali)
Taverner Consort & Players/Andrew Parrott

Avie - AV2278 (July 2012, at St Michael & All Angels, Oxford)

A ravishingly beautiful studio recording of the world's first operatic masterpiece, bringing together the best of UK's scholarship with a leading cast of early music singers and players.

It must surely rate amongst the best, alongside Gardiner's for Archiv (1985) probably at the very top of CD versions, partly because of Avie having found an acoustically ideal venue, captured by Adrian Hunter.

We have given somewhat guarded approval to several DVDs of L'Orfeo but, unusually for me, this double-CD takes the palm, partly because of the superb presentation in the 52-page booklet (provided you can cope with the small grey print).

Peter Grahame Woolf