Recorded live in June 2017 at the magnificent Liceu Theatre in Barcelona, this DVD is the companion to Joyce DiDonato's award-winning album In War and Peace: Harmony through Music. Seeking answers to the existential question "In the midst of chaos, how do you find peace?", it makes a compelling piece of music theatre as DiDonato journeys through arias by Handel, Purcell, Monteverdi, Leo and Jommelli with Il Pomo d'Oro and conductor Maxim Emelyanychev…
English conductor Harry Christophers was educated at the Canterbury Cathedral Choir School and Magdalen College, Oxford. He founded The Sixteen, the choral ensemble with their accompanying instrumental ensemble, in 1977. The Sixteen performs with an emphasis on early English polyphony, but also in a varied repertoire from the Renaissance to contemporary composers. He has led The Sixteen on tours throughout Europe, America, and the Far East, and on over 70 recordings.
While Italians and Frenchmen were competing for musical primacy everywhere on the European Continent, a very characteristically British tonal idiom reigned supreme during this short period of history before foreign influences increased in importance. Musica Alta Ripa’s espousal of an epoch that so far has not received much attention turns out to be a genuine instance of good fortune. With their special feel for the peculiar resonances of English music, these Hanoverian baroque specialists present a royal audio feast and with it genuine enrichment not only for early music enthusiasts.
One of opera’s most outspoken and impassioned personalities, Joyce DiDonato reminds us with her new albumIn War and Peace that music “soothes turmoil, threatens power and the status quo, and gloriously exalts the spirit”. Her selection of arias demonstrates how powerfully Baroque opera explores the extremes of human nature – from the tumult of Handel’s Scenes of Horror, Scenes of Woeto Purcell’s descent into despair, Dido’s Lament. Joyce’s longtime partners, the spirited Italian Baroque ensemble Il Pomo d’Oro, join her on this unique journey through sublime, challenging music; through chaos transformed by the eternal search for serenity.