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Joseph HAYDN (1732-1809)
Il mondo della luna (1777) (The World on the Moon):
Ragion nell'alma siede’ [5:01]
Lo speziale (1768) (The Apothecary):
Salamelica’ [1:45]
Armida (1777):
Odio, furor, dispetto’ [2:05]
L'anima del filosofo ossia or Orfeo ed Euridice (1791) (The Soul of the Philosopher or Orpheus and Eurydice):  
Del mio coro il voto estremo’ [3:41]
L'isola disabitata (1779) (The Desert Island):
Fra un dolce deliro’ [4:26]
Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791)
Vorrei spiegarvi, oh Dio!’, K.418 (1783) [6:38]
Die Zauberflöte (The Magic Flute), K.620 (1791)
Der Hölle Rache kocht in meinem Herzen’ [3:10]
Le Nozze di Figaro (The Marriage of Figaro) KV 492 (1786)
L'ho perduta... me meschina!’[2:00]
Deh vieni, non tardar’[2:59]
Lucio Silla, K.135 (1772):
Vanne.T'affretta... Ah se il crudel periglio’ [9:55]
Fra i pensier più funesti di morte’ [2:56]
Zaide, K.344/366b (1779/80):
Tiger! Wetze nur die Klauen’ [5:15]
Christoph Willibald GLUCK (1714–1787)
Armide (1777):
Venez, secondez mes désirs’ [2:31]
Le perfide Renaud me fuit’ [6:52]
Ah! Si la liberté me doit etre ravie’ [4:11]
Iphigénie en Tauride (1779):
Non, cet affreux devoir’ [3:45]
Patricia Petibon (soprano)
Concerto Köln/Daniel Harding
rec. January 2008, Kulturforum Franziskanerkloster, Paterskirche, Kempen, Germany. DDD
DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON 477 7468 [68:39]

Experience Classicsonline

French coloratura soprano Patricia Petibon has made her reputation through outstanding performances of French baroque music. In this her debut release for Deutsche Grammophon, Petibon shows her undoubted prowess in the Classical repertoire. All sixteen opera arias feature various women characters who are in love.
The varying moods of these arias certainly allow Petibon to display her considerable talents, particularly her artistry, dramatic facility and versatility. Her distinctive and bewitching voice has the exceptional ability to glide effortlessly through rapid changes of dynamics and her distinctive embellishments are frequently glittering. With noticeably elevated artistic standards the Montargis-born soprano provides considerable power and her diction is first class; yet remaining a model of finesse and sensitivity.
With the Haydn arias I especially enjoyed the interpretation of Flaminia’s aria ‘Ragion nell'alma siede’ from the opera Il mondo della luna (The World on the Moon) that aptly displays her agreeable yet highly individual ornamentations. The aria allows the soprano to demonstrate her range but seems less comfortable in the lower registers. One senses the frenzied anxiety of sorceress Armida in the aria ‘Odio, furor, dispetto’ and I was impressed with her breath control and expression in the high reaches of Euridice’s cavatina ‘Del mio coro il voto estremo’ from L'anima del filosofo ossia (The Soul of the Philosopher). There is blissful contentment in Silvia’s aria ‘Fra un dolce deliro’ from L'isola disabitata (The Desert Island) and her glide up to top notes is exceptional.
For me the highlight is Mozart’s beautiful concert aria, ‘Vorrei spiegarvi, oh Dio!’ ravishingly sung with the tessitura eminently suited to Petibon’s voice. The Queen of the Night’s challenging aria ‘Der Hölle Rache kocht in meinem Herzen’ from Die Zauberflöte (The Magic Flute) is a highly convincing portrayal of intense vengeance burning in her heart. I compared Petibon with my benchmark performance of the aria from Lucia Popp - recorded under Klemperer in 1964 at the Kingsway Hall. In most respects Petibon can match Popp, although, I did notice a harder-edged timbre compared to Popp’s more silvery purity. The uplifting aria ‘Tiger! Wetze nur die Klauen’ from the unfinished opera Zaide is charismatically performed; especially notable is the splendid finale
In the four Gluck arias I particularly enjoyed ‘Non, cet affreux devoir’ from Iphigénie en Tauride for the convincing sense of fear and anguish that the soprano communicates. The aria ‘Ah! Si la liberté me doit etre ravie’ from Gluck’s setting of Armide is sung with honeyed tones and a sense of deep yearning that contrasts with the terrifying and bitter emotions of the aria ‘Le perfide Renaud me fuit’ from later in the opera.
Patricia Petibon can be justly proud of this her debut recording for the prestigious yellow label. Conducted by Daniel Harding, Concerto Köln are an authentic instrument chamber orchestra who employ period informed practise in their performances. Providing orchestral support of the highest quality their eloquent playing feels most sympathetic to the music. The DG engineers can be proud of the excellent sonics from the Paterskirche at Kempen. The well written booklet notes are rather concise but cover all the basic information.
Michael Cookson


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