52,943 reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here



International mailing

  Founder: Len Mullenger             Editor in Chief: John Quinn               Contact Seen and Heard here  

Some items
to consider

£11 post-free anywhere
(currently suspended)


100th birthday of Mieczyslaw Weinberg on December 8, 2019.
Renate Eggbrecht has recorded all 3 violin Sonatas

Bruno Monteiro (violin)

More Preludes to Chopin
Kenneth Hamilton (piano)

Special Price and we are still delivering

Recordings of the Month


Feinberg Piano Sonatas

Schoenberg Violin Concerto

Early Keyboard

Nun Danket Alle Gott
Now Everyone Thanks God


Haydn Scottish Songs

Choral Music

Liszt Sonata

Renaissance Bohemia


Hahn Complete Songs

Piano Sonatas 6,7,8 Osborne

REVIEW Plain text for smartphones & printers
Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical

Nimbus Podcast

Obtain 10% discount

Special offer 50% off
15CDs £83 incl. postage

Musicweb sells the following labels

Altus 10% off
Atoll 10% off
CRD 10% off
Hallé 10% off
Lyrita 10% off
Nimbus 10% off
Nimbus Alliance
Prima voce 10% off
Red Priest 10% off
Retrospective 10% off
Saydisc 10% off
Sterling 10% off

Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger

Support us financially by purchasing this from
Gaetano DONIZETTI (1797-1848)
Aristea - Cantata [59:15]
Aristea/Cloe – Andrea Lauren Brown (soprano); Filinto – Sara Hershkowitz (soprano); Corinna – Caroline Adler (soprano); Licisco – Cornel Frey (tenor); Erasto – Robert Sellier (tenor); Comone – Andreas Burkhart (bass)
Members of the Bavarian State Opera Chorus
Simon Mayr Chorus and Ensemble/Franz Hauk
rec. Kongregationssaal, Neuburg an der Donau, Germany, 3-6 September 2012
No text or translation included
Italian libretto available at the Naxos website
NAXOS 8.573360 [59:15]

Donizetti would never have expected Aristea to receive more than the two performances it had in 1823, and certainly not have expected it to be heard nearly two hundred years later. If he had been right the loss would have been ours, for although it is certainly not amongst his more important works, there is much very enjoyable music in Aristea.
It was written in honour of the name day of Ferdinand I, King of the Two Sicilies, but has a plot of which the composer had a low opinion, disliking its coldness. I am indebted for this and other historical information to the helpful booklet notes by Thomas Lindner. It is set in ancient Greece and concerns a noble father and daughter who are separated and then reunited. Much more than that I remain unclear about in the absence of a more detailed synopsis or a translation of the Italian libretto which is available on line from Naxos. The musical numbers consist of an Overture (reused from Zoraida di Granata), a duet for two sopranos, a tenor cavatina, a splendid multi-sectioned quartet and a Finale, the whole interspersed with choruses and string-accompanied recitatives. There is considerable variety of musical character and, even if none of the items could be counted amongst the composer’s best work, the general standard is high and, for me at least, dullness was kept at bay. Its relatively short duration helps in this.
The performance is thoroughly idiomatic and accomplished. There may be no obvious stars amongst the soloists but neither are there any weak links and all manage to cope with sometimes formidable challenges. The chorus and orchestra sing and play with evident enthusiasm and as far as I could tell without a score. Franz Hauk makes all he can of the music.
It is good that not only are there still Donizetti rarities to unearth but that what is revealed is so enjoyable. This is a disc that should be in the collection of any enthusiast for that composer’s music.
John Sheppard