Nach einer im Original deutsch gesungenen Adaption des antiken griechischen Stoffs muss man suchen wie nach der bekannten Stecknadel im Heuhaufen. Und hat man sie irgendwann gefunden, stellt sich heraus: Neben deutschem Text gibt es in Georg Philipp Telemanns rund zweistündiger Version aus dem Jahre 1726 ("Orpheus oder die wunderbare Beständigkeit der Liebe") tatsächlich auch Gesangsstücke, die italienisch, und solche, die französisch gesungen werden.
In this premiere recording, René Jacobs leads a cast of outstanding singers and musicians in a grand production of Georg Philipp Telemann's 'Orpheus.' The manuscripts of this operatic drama were only recently rediscovered and because of some missing material, the version presented here cleverly interpolates other music by Telemann (and his contemporaries) to complete the story.
If you're up for nearly 160 minutes of quintessentially charming German baroque chamber music, here is the set for you. The Camerata Köln lucidly performs Telemann's six concertos and suites with as much style and invention as we're ever likely to hear. These players clearly understand how Telemann's inventive variety of dance forms, sudden chromatic harmonic shifts, and parallel note sequences reflect his awareness of national styles outside of Germany. They also tactfully embrace the improvisatory freedom Telemann encouraged. If you've enjoyed Telemann's more well known (and recorded) Paris Quartets or Methodic Sonatas, or his famous Tafelmusik series, you'll likely enjoy these debut performances as well. (John Greene, ClassicsToday.com)
Telemann had made reference to writing twenty operas during his four years in Leipzig, but sadly the scores have been lost and very few librettos and arias are extant. Michael Maul has proven that some 40 arias discovered at the Frankfurt University Library were from Telemann’s Germanicus and its modern premiere took place with Gotthold Schwarz and the Saxon Baroque Orchestra. Germanicus is a tale of love, lust and political intrigue based very loosely on events during the first-century occupation of Teutonic territory by the Romans. Since only arias survive, for recitatives Maul substituted a tongue-in-cheek narrative wittily delivered by actor Dieter Bellmann.
When Philippe Jaroussky - whose angelic voice seems almost timeless - sings works by Telemann and Bach, it becomes abundantly clear that the sheer emotional force and the purifying power of their music have not diminished one bit over the centuries.