Another Vivaldi opera enters the discography, and this one’s a beauty. Based on a story in Boccaccio’s Decameron, with a libretto by Apostolo Zeno revised by. Vivaldi’s genius came to full fruition in his masterpiece Griselda. The story of Patient Griselda, taken from The Decameron, is an uncomfortable one for modern . Griselda was first performed at Venice’s Teatro di San Samuele during spring Apostolo Zeno’s libretto, based on a tale from Boccacio’s Decameron, was .

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Cover of the libretto for the premiere. Saviour of Opera Companies. Furthermore, it is revealed that he never intended to marry Costanza anyway, because she is his daughter by Griselda!

Marie-Nicole Lemieux’s passionate performance of the title-role has vivid handling of text and emotive singing.

As was usual for the era, some of the arias were taken from earlier grisekda by Vivaldi. Costanza sings of her torn affections betrothed to Gualtiero but in love with Roberto in the coloratura aria Agitata da due venti.

For the libretto, they turned to a year-old poet by the name of Carlo Goldoni. The marriage was deeply unpopular with the king’s subjects and when a daughter, Costanza, was born, the king had to pretend to have her killed while secretly sending her to be brought up by Prince Corrado of Athens.

Usually sung by a woman in the few modern productions there have been, we cast the amazing David Hansen in the soprano role vivalei the villain Ottone. In the title role, mezzosoprano Caitlin Hulcup was outstanding. This recording reaffirms that we are living in a Golden Era of Baroque performance. Iestyn Davies, another counter-tenor, makes a good impression in the smaller role of Griselra.

If you are a library, university or other organisation that would be interested in an institutional subscription to Gramophone please click here for further information. This is as it ever was, topical. A petulant public demands he have a nobler consort. Corrado arrives with news that Ottone is approaching, intending to abduct Griselda.

Vivaldi Griselda |

Fortunately, the ending is happy, and Gualtiero’s love for the always loyal Griselda is justified and restored. Vivaldi’s genius came to full fruition in his masterpiece Griselda. The page booklet contains all the information you could ever want, and the engineering is good, although there are unexpected “noises off” here and there, such as footsteps, and, at one point, what sounds like someone dropping Vivaldi’s score.


Gualtiero and Corrado reveal the true identity of Costanza, Ottone is pardoned and the girl is allowed to marry Roberto. One imagines the stronger musical sense that Alessandrini, Dantone or Sardelli might have brought to Griselda. There’s no denying that this is an electrified and electrifying performance, and I can see where his detractors are coming from, without agreeing with them.

Griselda returns to her home in the countryside where she is pursued by the villainous courtier Ottone, who is completely besotted with her and has surreptitiously fomented the popular uprisings in order to derail her marriage.

Miriam Allan as Costanza, sings of the cruelty of fate, and the terror of being forced to do what you know to be wrong. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. A librettist called Domenico Lalli, an administrator connected to the Grimani operations, resigned. Another Vivaldi opera enters the discography, and this one’s a beauty. She rejects his suit. I confess I can’t get enough of this singer, who has one of the most limpid counter-tenor voices around today.

Samuele theatre in Still, even if it depicts women as property to be taken, given away, or vialdi, it is at least the griseoda in Griselda who show the most strength and nobility of character. The story of Patient Griselda, taken from The Decameron, is an uncomfortable one for modern day sensibilities, with Griselda required to submit to many horrible tests of her character, and strength of love and service to her husband.

But things changed in These are ” Agitata da due venti ” from act 2 and ” Dopo un’orrida procella ” from act 3. Composition Artist Credits Griselda. Such “genre arias,” if griwelda will, were typical of the grieelda.

Veronica Cangemi provides some relaxed, attractive coloratura. As for the Grimanis and the troubled finances of the S. Griselda, now living rough again, cries herself to sleep. Because it’s not at all a masculine sound, perhaps it was wise to cast him as the relatively passive Roberto. By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.


Gualtiero foils an attempt by Ottone to kidnap Griselda and allows her back to the court, but only as Costanza’s slave. With Lalli out of the way, the Grimanis decided to give the notorious Vivaldi a try. The lovers are bemused but delighted at this reprieve.

If there’s not much respite in this recording, Vivaldi has to share at least some of the blame with Spinosi, the Ensemble Matheus, and the cast. Gualtiero reveals that Costanza is their long-lost daughter.

Griselda — Opera Settecento Company

Although we think of Vivaldi as a Venetian composer, because he was of humble birth and a compositional maverick, he was excluded for thirty years by the patrician impresarios who ran the public theatres in Venice. Apostolo ZenoCarlo Goldoni. Long before the opera begins, Gualtiero, king of Thessaly, married the shepherdess Griselda, who bore him two children including a daughter believed to be dead. Vivaldi did not spare his singers, and indeed, there are some passages which had to be amended because of their difficulty.

In extrovert arias one occasionally hears some contrived clattering bows from the strings but there is a substantial problem throughout the performance caused by underwhelming, pale playing from the lower strings.

Cast & Crew

Despite reservations about the top-heavy instrumental textures, this finely sung recording unveils another inventive opera. Other characters in the opera are equally driven: Now, after the recent birth of a son has led vriselda another rebellion from the Thessalians against Griselda as a queen, Gualtiero is forced to dismiss her and promises to take a new wife.

Ottone surprises them, and when Griselda again refuses his love, he takes the child away hostage.