The Pleasure of Love

Author: 
Guest

The Pleasure of Love

  • Plaisir d'amour
  • Come raggio di sol
  • Sebben crudele me fai languir
  • (Il) Pompeo, O cessate di piagarmi
  • (Il) Pompeo, Toglietemi la vita ancor
  • (Il) Pompeo, Già il sole dal Gange
  • Serse, 'Xerxes', ~, Ombra mai fu (Largo)
  • Rinaldo, ~, Lascia ch'io pianga
  • (Il) cardellino
  • Danza, danza, fanciulla
  • Pietà, Signore
  • Sperar io non dovrei
  • Caro mio ben
  • Così amor mi fai languir
  • Paride ed Elena, ~, O del mio dolce ardor
  • Griselda
  • Te voglio bene assaje
  • Plaisir d'amour
  • Come raggio di sol
  • Sebben crudele me fai languir
  • (Il) Pompeo, O cessate di piagarmi
  • (Il) Pompeo, Toglietemi la vita ancor
  • (Il) Pompeo, Già il sole dal Gange
  • Serse, 'Xerxes', ~, Ombra mai fu (Largo)
  • Rinaldo, ~, Lascia ch'io pianga
  • (Il) cardellino
  • Danza, danza, fanciulla
  • Pietà, Signore
  • Sperar io non dovrei
  • Caro mio ben
  • Così amor mi fai languir
  • Paride ed Elena, ~, O del mio dolce ardor
  • Griselda
  • Te voglio bene assaje

These are songs of light and grace; no great power is needed, nor is an orchestra. For example, Plaisir d'amour was a pleasure indeed when Yvonne Printemps, with the most delicate of voices, drew out the phrases as one long chained melody, swelled piteously at the thought of her ungrateful beloved, and signed her acknowledgment of the chagrin that lasts a lifetime in contrast to the happiness that fills but a moment. For accompaniment, a harpsichord was then sufficient. Carreras, without gross fault, lacks distinction of phrase or nuance, is discreetly lachrymose and avails himself, plentifully, of discreet aspirates, brings a thickened tone to the slender melody, and has an orchestra playing tasteful elaborations by Federico Agostinelli, not positively offensive but otiose nevertheless.
The lovely Come raggio di sol by Caldara brings more aspirates and a more palpable unsteadiness. The first note of ''Ombra mai fu'' is poorly controlled, but the grander style of the aria suits Carreras rather better, while the nimble movement of Danza, danza, fanciulla and Gia il sole dal Gange suits him hardly at all. Pieta, Signore is a mixture: some fine, affectionately voiced phrases, others wanting in grace and finish. In the speculative verses of Il cardellino he sings with more freedom and charm, but it is not till the end of the recital, with the full voice coming into play in the refrain of Donizetti's Te voglio bene assaje that one catches much sense of enjoyment. But it would have been little short of a miracle if a singer who had been encouraging his voice in the direction of roles such as Eleazar and Samson could make it perform an about-turn and acquire the easeful elegance of tone and style appropriate to songs like these.'

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