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Bellini, Vincenzo

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ORC38
La straniera

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This release marks the first full-length Bellini opera in Opera Rara’s catalogue. The score points forward to Bellini’s greatest works and, on its own account, includes superb dramatic writing and those characteristic ‘long, long melodies of which he alone had the secret’, as Verdi put it. More Info

ORC45 (3 disc set)
Il pirata

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Vincenzo Bellini’s third opera, Il pirata, marked an important step in his career. Not only was it the 27 year old’s first score for the brand leader of Italian opera houses, La Scala, Milan, it also represented his first collaboration with Felice Romani, the leading librettist of the day, who was to become his regular artistic partner.

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Berlioz, Hector

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ORC47 (1 disc set)
Le Portrait de Manon and Les Nuits d’été

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This new release features a double bill of Massenet’s Le Portrait de Manon and Berlioz’s song cycle Les Nuits d’été, recorded from live staged performances at the Royal Opera House with artists from the Jette Parker Young Artists Programme and the Southbank Sinfonia.

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Donizetti, Gaetano

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ORC1 (3 disc set)
Ugo Conte di Parigi

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Opera Rara chose this most obscure of Donizetti’s operas on the strength of its many beautiful and intricate ensembles. More Info

Word Premier RecordingPenguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)


ORC3 (2 disc set)
Gabriella di Vergy

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Donizetti’s fascination with the story of Gabriella di Vergy began in 1826. The grisly appeal of the story of Gabriella lies in its powerful final scene in which Gabriella’s husband, Fayel, delivers to her a casket containing the still-warm heart of her lover, Raoul.

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Word Premier RecordingPenguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)



Gounod, Charles

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ORC53
La Colombe

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Sir Mark Elder’s second Opera Rara release of 2015 features a rare recording - Gounod’s delightful opera La Colombe ("The Dove”). More Info


Leoncavallo, Ruggero

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ORC55
Zazà

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With the release of Zazà, we mark our first recording venture into the musical world of Leoncavallo and the operatic tradition of verismo. More Info


Massenet, Jules

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ORC47 (1 disc set)
Le Portrait de Manon and Les Nuits d’été

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CD £14.99
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This new release features a double bill of Massenet’s Le Portrait de Manon and Berlioz’s song cycle Les Nuits d’été, recorded from live staged performances at the Royal Opera House with artists from the Jette Parker Young Artists Programme and the Southbank Sinfonia.

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Mayr, Giovanni Simone

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ORC11 (3 disc set)
Medea in Corinto

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Medea arrives in Corinth hoping to persuade Jason to return to her. When Jason spurns her, she uses her supernatural powers with murderous results, killing their two children and setting fire to the city. More Info

ORC23 (3 disc set)
Ginevra di Scozia

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The bicentenary of this occasion was celebrated with a new production of the same work and Opera Rara went to Trieste to record the initial performances of this important revival. The cast is led by French soprano Elizabeth Vidal who tackles the stratospheric role of Ginevra with ease (and Es - a bushel of them!!). As the hero Ariodante, Daniela Barcellona confirms her place on the roster of talented, young artists emerging from Italy. Antonino Siragusa, likewise, is representative of the new generation of bel canto tenors. More Info

Live Concert RecordingPenguin Guide - Key recordingWord Premier Recording



Mercadante, Saverio

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ORC12 (3 disc set)
Orazi e Curiazi

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Corneille’s tragedy Les Horaces concerns a long and bitter feud between two noble Roman families. This violent story is brought vividly to life by Mercadante’s 1846 opera

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ORC26 (3 disc set)
Emma d'Antiochia

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Emma d’Anitochia is one of a number of important operas, which Mercadante wrote in the years 1831-1837 – a period that began on his return from several years spent in Spain and Portugal.

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Meyerbeer, Jakob Liebmann

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ORC5 (3 disc set)
Dinorah

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The story of the hapless and demented young Dinorah roaming the hills with her goat, Bellah. More Info

ORC10 (4 disc set)
Il crociato in Egitto

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Adriano, a Knight of Rhodes, comes to Egypt in search of his nephew Armando, whom he believes may have died in battle. In fact he has married Palmide, daughter of the Sultan of Egypt and she has converted to Christianity. The furious Sultan throws everyone in jail, but all is forgiven when Armando intercedes in a plot to overthrow his father-in-law. More Info

Penguin Guide - Key recordingWord Premier RecordingPenguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)



Offenbach, Jacques

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ORC2 (2 disc set)
Christopher Columbus

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A joyful and infectious pastiche that marries some of Offenbach’s best music with Don White’s witty and irreverent English version of the discovery of America. More Info

ORC7 (3 disc set)
Robinson Crusoe

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Offenbach's 1867 version, loosely based on Daniel Defoe’s classic, Robinson Crusoe is a hopeless romantic who runs away to sea only to be shipwrecked. More Info

Penguin Guide - Key recordingWord Premier RecordingPenguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)



Pacini, Giovanni

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ORC15 (3 disc set)
Maria regina d’Inghilterra

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Based on Victor Hugo’s passionate play about Mary Tudor, Maria regina d’Inghilterra was one of Pacini’s most successful operas.

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Penguin Guide - Key recordingWord Premier RecordingPenguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)


ORC21 (3 disc set)
Carlo di Borgogna

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Bruce Ford takes the title role, giving a bravura performance as the Burgundian duke caught in tragic conflict between love and duty. Jennifer Larmore and Elizabeth Futral are the rival leading ladies, whose final confrontation is a duet of exceptional virtuosity. More Info


Paer, Ferdinando

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ORR237 (1 disc set)
Sofonisba

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Sofonisba, a classical heroine portrayed by various 17th and 18th century composers, becomes, in Paer’s hands, a more realistic figure – a real woman. More Info

Word Premier RecordingPenguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)



Ricci, Federico

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ORR228 (1 disc set)
La Prigione di Edimburgo

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Immensely popular in its day, La Prigione di Edimburgo provided two hits - the lullaby, Dormi, dormi bel bambino, gloriously sung on this recording by Nuccia Focile, and the baritone aria, Sulla poppa del mio brich, performed by the accomplished Christopher Purves.

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ORR246 (1 disc set)
Corrado d'Altamura

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This is the sixth opera in the Essential Opera Rara series and, once again, a vivid impression of the work is captured on a single disc. More Info


Rossini, Gioachino

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ORC14 (3 disc set)
Ricciardo e Zoraide

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Ricciardo, Zoraide’s persistent and ingenious suitor, comes to the rescue and saves her by devious means. More Info

ORC18 (3 disc set)
Otello

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Opera Rara recorded the new critical edition by the Rossini Foundation of Otello. Hugely admired in its day, this highly innovative score contains some of Rossini’s most inspired music.

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Penguin Guide - Key recordingWord Premier RecordingPenguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)



Thomas, Ambroise

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ORC37 (2 disc set)
La Cour de Célimène

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In recent years, there has been increased interest in the works of Ambroise Thomas, particularly in his ambitious setting of Hamlet (1868). Opera Rara now takes a further important step in the rediscovery of this fascinating figure, with a new recording of his 1855 opéra-comique La Cour de Célimène.

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Verdi, Giuseppe

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ORCV302 (2 disc set)
Simon Boccanegra

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CD £28.99


Simon Boccanegra, the second volume in the Verdi Originals series, is set in 14th Century Genoa and explores the political intrigues of the times, centred on the discovery of the true identity of Amelia Boccanegra.

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ORCV303 (3 disc set)
Les Vêpres Siciliennes

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CD £37.50


Les Vêpres Siciliennes is one of Verdi’s misunderstood operas. This is Opera Rara’s third of five sets in its Verdi Originals series and this BBC recording of the opera finally restores the original French libretto.

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Penguin Guide - Key recordingPenguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)Penguin Guide - outstanding performance (3 stars)



Viardot, Pauline

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ORR212 (1 disc set)
Cendrillon

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Continuing the series of music written for the salon, we travel to France for a fascinating glimpse of one of the great figures of 19th-century music. More Info

ORR240 (2 disc set)
Pauline Viardot and Friends

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The life of Pauline Viardot was truly extraordinary. One of the greatest prima donnas and influential musical figures of the 19th century, she was born in Paris, daughter of Spanish tenor Manuel Garcia and sister of the legendary singer Maria Malibran. More Info

Live Concert RecordingWord Premier Recording



Wekerlin, Jean Baptiste

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ORR245 (1 disc set)
La Laitière de Trianon

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This recording focuses on a single work designed for intimate performance: J B Wekerlin’s ‘opérette de salon’, La Laitière de Trianon (The Milkmaid of Trianon).

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