La fedeltà premiata (Haydn)
Daniela Barcellona (Amaranta), Monica Groop (Celia), John Aler (Fileno), Simon Edwards (Lindoro), Patrizia Ciofi (Nerina), Christopher Schaldenbrand (Perrucchetto), Charles Austin (Melibeo); David Golub (conductor), Padova Chamber Orchestra.
Released in October 2002.
"One's initial reaction to any Haydn opera is likely to be astonishment that the music is so lovely. While none of his 23 operas (or at least the dozen or so which have survived) can match Mozart's best in dramatic credence, the music is often on a comparable level. [...] To appease the goddess Diana, whom the villagers once offended, the high priest must annually choose a loving couple to be sacrificed to a sea monster.... The plot seethes with jealous lovers scheming for revenge; a wild boar hunt separates the cowardly from the brave. Diana eventually forgives all, and only the devious priest dies. [...] Instead of a dramatic comedy, what we get is a series of brilliant recitatives, arias, and choruses; the recitatives are often scenes in their own right, ensembles that take the place of duets, trios, quartets, etc.
"La fedeltà premiata has seven major roles; none dominate and all have much to do. [...] As Nerina ('a nymph, fickle in love'), coloratura Patrizia Ciofi is magnificent; her aria 'È amore di natura' closes with some thrilling top notes." Fanfare May/Jun-03