180 Days With Mozart And Me

A Survey Of The Philips Complete Mozart Edition…From Symphonies Through Theatre And Ballet Music

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Of Days New and Sagas Old (Early Italian Operas, Box 13)

April 28th, 2010 · No Comments · Ascanio in Alba (Part II), Box 13: Early Italian Operas, K111, K111 (Part III), Mozart at 15

Early Italian Operas Box 13Today is part three of three in the saga of Ascanio in Alba, K111.

It is virtually indistinguishable from the previous two parts.

Which means I don’t like it any more now than I did the first couple of times I heard it.

The opera was first performed at the Teatro Regio Ducal in Milan, on 17 October 1771. (See original cast list below.)

Synopsis
Place: the site of the future city of Alba Longa, near Rome
Time: mythical times.
Ascanio in Alba Original Cast

If you want to know the story behind the mythology, visit its entry on Wikipedia.

If you want to know the story behind Mozart’s opera, do likewise.

Here’s the cast on today’s CD:

Venere (Venus)…………………………………………….Lilian Sukis
Ascanio, her son, son of Aeneas…………………Agnes Baltsa
Silvia, a nymph descended from Hercules……….Edith Mathis
Aceste, a priest of Venus……………………………..Peter Schreier
Fauno, a shepherd………………………………………Arleen Auger
Genii, Shepherds & Shepherdesses (chorus)…………Salzburg Kammerchor

Leopold Hager, harpsichord
Mozarteum-Orchester Salzburg
Leopold Hager, conductor

Here is what I listened to today, complete with the best guesses of scholars regarding where and when each composition was penned. This information was pieced together from The Compactothèque book + CD, which is an essential purchase if you want the fullest enjoyment from the Philips Complete Mozart Edition. It’s only about $8 and the sampler CD, alone, is remarkably enjoyable. But the booklet is gold, Jerry! Gold! Keep in mind, some of these places and dates are merely guesses. But I find it fascinating to see even guesses for some of these compositions. They help me put Mozart’s life and creative output in perspective.

For example, Johannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart was born on 27 January 1756. With that in mind, take a look at where and when these pieces were composed. I’ll add Mozart’s approximate age in the parenthetical data below each composition:

1. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Ahimè! Che veggio mai?” – Recitativo (Agnes Baltsa)
2. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Al mio ben mi veggio avanti” – No.22 Aria
3. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Ferma, aspetta, ove vai?” – Recitativo (Edith Mathis)
4. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Infelici affetti miei” – No.23 Aria
5. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Anima grande” – “Che strano evento” – “Ahi la crudel” Recitativo – No.24 Coro – Recitativo (Agnes Baltsa)
6. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Torna mio bene, ascolta” – No.25 Aria
7. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Venga, de’ sommi Eroi” – No.26 Coro (Mozarteum-Orchester Salzburg)
8. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Che strana meraviglia” – Recitativo (Peter Schreier)
9. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Sento, che il cor mi dice” – “Si, Padre, alfin mi taccia” – No.27 Aria – Recitativo
10. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Scendi, celeste Venere” – No.28 Coro (Mozarteum-Orchester Salzburg)
11. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Ma s’allontani almen” – Recitativo (Edith Mathis)
12. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “No, non possiamo vivere” – “Ecco ingombran l’altare” “Scendi, celeste Venere” – No.29 Coro – Recitativo – No.30 Coro (Peter Schreier)
13. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Invoca, o figlia” – Recitativo
14. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Ah caro sposo, oh Dio!” – No.31 Terzetto (Edith Mathis)
15. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Eccovi al fin di vostre pene” – Recitativo (Lilian Sukis)
16. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Che bel piacer io sento” – No.32 Piccola parte del terzetto (Agnes Baltsa)
17. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Ah chi nodi più forti” – Recitativo (Lilian Sukis)
18. Ascanio in Alba, KV 111 / Part 2 – “Alma Dea, tutto il mondo governa” – No.33 Coro (Mozarteum-Orchester Salzburg)
- Milan, October-November, 1771 (Mozart was 15)

Do I have favorite today? You’re kidding, right?

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