Serenata ZWV 177 to be recorded

  • Good news! I have received word from Nibiru that a recording of the Serenata ZWV 177 is forthcoming later this year. :)
    Conductor Adam Viktora
    Ensemble Inegal
    Prague Baroque Soloists
    Roberta Maneli – soprano
    Hana Blazikova – soprano
    Gabriela Eibenova – soprano
    TBD – alto
    Marian Krejcik(?) - bass
    To be recorded Sep 2009, released Nov-Dec 2009?

    Adam Viktora is proving to be a great advocate for Zelenka's music.

    The ZWV catalogue lists this work as for four soprano soloists and an alto. I wonder are they transposing one soprano part for bass?

  • Hello,

    I got my copy of "Il Diamante" few days ago and this is my first reflection... Surprisingly this is a 2CD set totaling some 97 minutes. Sleeve cover and booklet is perfect, although slightly too dark for me. But when you turn the music on it is a typical Zelenka, very bold and innovative. Adam Viktora's Ensemble Inegal and singers are high class...recording is crisp and clean... I could not find a weak spot so far (mind you I've only listened to it twice... it is quite long and you need some peace to listen to it carefully) It is a last major secular work of Zelenka and you can tell the difference from Il penitenti al Sepolcro written at about the same time.
    By the way singers are Marie Fajtová, Hana Blažíková, Roberta Mameli, Gabriela Eibenová and Kai Wessel. Considering the quality of music one needs to ask why it has been unrecorded until now. Big thanks to Nibiru. Those who haven't ordered it yet might as well do won't be disappointed.


  • It's amazing, I ordered it on Monday, and I'm listening to it right now - it managed to find its way to me despite the Christmas rush in postage. Great work from, they sent me an email and seem to have dispatched the CD almost immediately after my order. (And it wasn't expensive.)

    So far I like it, but I'm just too excited not to write a post about this release before finishing listening to it:-)

  • I received the long awaited Diamond earlier this week and have since used every opportunity to take it in. I must say that I am stunned, surprised and overwhelmed by this work. In fact I can't stop laughing while listening to it because it is so utterly brilliant. The work is so original in every way - there is really nothing that sounds like it. It's easily one of Zelenka's best works and does show him in an entirely new light.

    The opening Sinfonia is perhaps the best orchestral number Zelenka wrote. Such thunderous ritornellos! It should be an appealing concert piece for orchestras alongside the Hipocondrie, but they'd better have some serious horn players - like the outstanding ones on the recording. My favourite aria has to be Terra's pulsating first aria which Hana Blazikova delivers superbly, and Venere's only aria which Gabriela Eibenova sings heavenly. I was over the moon when I heard her sing this in Prague last September and again now because I do think it proves my hypothesis that this aria was meant for Faustina. It's so different from the other arias in style and Zelenka makes sure nothing casts a shadow on the voice, with the instruments taking a back seat. It's a real gem.

    There are endless moments to marvel at. One is Imeneo's aria with its happy little opening melody, one of the nicest in all the Zelenka oeuvre. Kai Wessel is fabulous in this delightful aria with his great experience and musicality showing. Another is the sometimes unusually late entry of the singers in the da capo parts of the arias, which is a quite original and refreshing feature from Zelenka. He has sometimes been criticized by musicologists for not evolving his melodic ideas soundly but certainly not here; the music moves in a very convincing way and the whole work swings big time. And the final chorus is pure masterstroke. Written in a typical serenata/opera heroic chorus fashion it has an enourmous feelgood factor and a very memorable singable line.

    Adam Viktora and his forces perform this difficult piece admirably. The tempos are brisk and true to Zelenka's autograph. The singers are truly terrific. Every section of the orchestra does a fantastic job but I must praise especially the basso continuo group and its organic and lively sound, and for the rhythmical flexibility which is the heartbeat of the work. In short; this is how I imagine the sound of the famous Dresden orchestra and that is really the highest praise I can give.


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