Pendant 20 ans, Pierre-Anthony Allard fut le directeur artistique du légendaire studio Harcourt. Convoquant ses souvenirs, il raconte avec truculence les histoires émouvantes, drôles ou extravagantes des anonymes et célébrités rencontrées. Un miroir de la comédie humaine. …
"Furnished with a varietie of delicious Ayres, collected out of the best authors in English, French, Spanish and Italian". Robert Dowland the son of Dowland "The English Orpheus" was the compiler of this fine anthology dedicated to Sir Robert Sidney, once Lord Chamberlain. In an age of "conceit" It was common enough to select some contrasting idea or image and apply it to an unrelated concept—hence the title "Musicall Banquet" which Robert Dowland charmingly describes as "like a careful confectionary", continuing that "as neere as might be I have fitted my Banquet for all tastes".
Anthony Camden, for years principal oboe of the LSO, here makes a very welcome solo appearance on disc, playing with typical point and style, using his attractively reedy tone. The regular oboe concertos are well supplemented by the Suite in G minor as edited by Camden, where he is joined by the prize-winning Julia Girdwood on the second oboe. The Otho Overture too features prominent roles for oboes in duet. Ward and the City of London Sinfonia are sympathetic accompanists using modern instruments. First-rate sound from All Saints, East Finchley.
Handel came to the city of Hamburg in the summer of 1703 and played as a violinist in the theatre at the Gänsemarkt, the local market place. On later occasions, he also played the harpsichord in the orchestra. His first opera – announced as a Singspiel although it has no spoken dialogue – was premiered on 8 January 1705, after being composed in the months directly preceding this. An Italian libretto was written by Giulio Pancieri in Venice in 1691 for Giuseppe Boniventi's opera L'Almira. The German translation used by Handel was made by Friedrich Christian Feustking. The recitatives of the opera are in German, while some of the arias are also in German, others in Italian, as was the custom at the opera house in Hamburg. Almira is the sole example among Handel's many operas with no role for a castrato.