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Opera audiences in 19th-century Paris may never have visited India, but they loved to dream about it. After the successes enjoyed by LespĂȘcheurs de perles and Le roi de Lahore Delibes knew what he was doing when he chose to set an adaptation of Pierre Loti's exotic Indian novel Rarahu and duly scored a hit with his opera LakmĂ© at the OpĂ©ra-Comique in 1883. The opera is nothing without a star in the title-role.

Natalie Dessay is certainly that and yet she never fails to remember that Delibes's heroine must be fragile and sensitive. Her Bell Song, brilliantly sung, is also intent on telling a story. Her singing of the death scene, with its delicate fil de voce perfectly poised each time the high A comes round, is heartfelt and leaves no doubt that this is a Lakmé who deserves to go to heaven. EMI found a worthy tenor to partner her. Gregory Kunde, as Gérald, is at ease at the top of his voice. At the first entrance of the colonial Brits, Frédéric describes Gérald as a poet and Kunde lives up to the promise by phrasing his opening solo, 'Fantaisie aux divins mensonges', with poetic sensibility. In the duets he and Dessay are tender young love personified. The supporting cast is also a decent one.

Michel Plasson gives the music room to breathe and is able to conjure a dreamy atmosphere in the scenes of romance. His Toulouse orchestra is adequate, if not exceptional, and the recording is of a good standard. What reason is there to resist?

Delibes: Lakme - Natalie Dessay

Opera audiences in 19th-century Paris may never have visited India, but they loved to dream about it. After the successes enjoyed by LespĂȘcheurs de perles and Le roi de Lahore Delibes knew what he was doing when he chose to set an adaptation of Pierre Loti's exotic Indian novel Rarahu and duly scored a hit with his opera LakmĂ© at the OpĂ©ra-Comique in 1883. The opera is nothing without a star in the title-role.

Natalie Dessay is certainly that and yet she never fails to remember that Delibes's heroine must be fragile and sensitive. Her Bell Song, brilliantly sung, is also intent on telling a story. Her singing of the death scene, with its delicate fil de voce perfectly poised each time the high A comes round, is heartfelt and leaves no doubt that this is a Lakmé who deserves to go to heaven. EMI found a worthy tenor to partner her. Gregory Kunde, as Gérald, is at ease at the top of his voice. At the first entrance of the colonial Brits, Frédéric describes Gérald as a poet and Kunde lives up to the promise by phrasing his opening solo, 'Fantaisie aux divins mensonges', with poetic sensibility. In the duets he and Dessay are tender young love personified. The supporting cast is also a decent one.

Michel Plasson gives the music room to breathe and is able to conjure a dreamy atmosphere in the scenes of romance. His Toulouse orchestra is adequate, if not exceptional, and the recording is of a good standard. What reason is there to resist?

Delibes: Lakme - Natalie Dessay

190296279096

Details

Format: CD
Label: ERATO
Rel. Date: 12/30/2022
UPC: 190296279096

Delibes: Lakme
Artist: Natalie Dessay
Format: CD
New: Available $18.98
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Formats and Editions

DISC: 1

1. Lakmé : Prélude
2. Lakmé, Act 1: "A l'heure accoutumée" (Choeur, Nilakantha)
3. Lakmé, Act 1: "Blanche Dourga" (Lakmé, Choeur, Nilakantha)
4. Lakmé, Act 1 Scene 3: "Lakmé, c'est toi qui nous protÚges !" (Nilakantha, Lakmé, Hadji, Mallika)
5. Lakmé, Act 1: "DÎme épais, le jasmin" (Lakmé, Mallika)
6. Lakmé, Act 1: "Miss Rose, Miss Ellen" (Mistress Bentson, Ellen, Rose, Gerald, Frederic)
7. Lakmé, Act 1: "Quand une femme est si jolie" (Ellen, Frederic, Gerald, Rose, Mistress Bentson)
8. Lakmé, Act 1: "Nous commettons un sacrilÚge" (Frederic, Gerald, Mistress Bentson, Rose, Ellen)
9. Lakmé, Act 1: "Prendre le dessin d'un bijou" (Gerald)
10. Lakmé, Act 1: "Non ! Je ne veux pas toucher" (Gerald, Lakmé, Mallika)
11. Lakmé, Act 1: "Les fleurs me paraissent plus belles" (Lakmé)
12. Lakmé, Act 1: "Ah ! Mallika ! Mallika" (Lakmé, Mallika, Hadji)
13. LakmĂ©, Act 1: "D'oĂč viens-tu ? Que veux-tu ?" (LakmĂ©, Gerald)
14. Lakmé, Act 1: "Viens là ! là !" (Hadji, Nilakantha, Lakmé, Choeur)
15. Lakmé, Act 1: Entr'acte
16. Lakmé, Act 2: "Allons, avant que midi sonne" (Choeur, Mistress Bentson, Frederic, Rose)
17. Lakmé, Act 2: "Enfin ! Nous aurons du silence !" (Mistress Bentson, Frederic, Rose)
18. Lakmé, Act 2: Airs de danse - Introduction
19. Lakmé, Act 2: Airs de danse - Terna
20. Lakmé, Act 2: Airs de danse - Rektah
21. Lakmé, Act 2: Airs de danse - Persian
22. Lakmé, Act 2: Airs de danse - "Ah ! Ah ! Par nos yeux charmés" (Choeur)
23. Lakmé, Act 2: Airs de danse - Sortie
24. Lakmé, Act 2: "Voyez donc ce vieillard" (Rose, Frederic, Mistress Bentson)
25. Lakmé, Act 2: "Ah ! Ce vieillard encor !" (Rose/Nilakantha/Lakmé)
26. Lakmé, Act 2: "Ah ! c'est de ta douleur" (Lakmé, Nilakantha)
27. LakmĂ©, Act 2: "Par les dieux inspirĂ©s" - Air des clochettes. "OĂč va la jeune hindoue" (LakmĂ©, Nilakantha, Chorus)
28. Lakmé, Act 2: "La rage me dévore" (Nilakantha, Lakmé, Choeur, Gerald, Frederic)
29. Lakmé, Act 2: "Au milieu des chants d'allégresse" (Nilakantha, Lakmé, Choeur)
30. Lakmé, Act 2: "Le maßtre ne pense qu'à sa vengeance" (Hadji)
31. Lakmé, Act 2: "Lakmé ! Lakmé ! C'est toi !" (Gerald, Lakmé)
32. Lakmé, Act 2: "O Dourga, toi qui renais" (Choeur, Ellen, Rose, Mistress Bentson, Frederic, Gerald)
33. Lakmé, Act 2: Entr'acte
34. Lakmé, Act 3: "Sous le ciel tout étoilé" (Lakmé)
35. Lakmé, Act 3: "Quel vague souvenir alourdit ma pensée ?" (Gerald, Lakmé)
36. LakmĂ©, Act 3: "LakmĂ© ! LakmĂ© ! Ah ! Viens dans la forĂȘt profonde" (Gerald)
37. Lakmé, Act 3: "Là, je pourrai t'entendre" (Lakmé, Choeur, Gerald)
38. Lakmé, Act 3: "Vivant !" (Frederic, Gerald)
39. Lakmé, Act 3: "Ils allaient deux à deux" (Lakmé, Gerald, Choeur)
40. Lakmé, Act 3: "C'est lui ! C'est lui !" (Nilakantha, Lakmé, Gerald)

More Info:

Opera audiences in 19th-century Paris may never have visited India, but they loved to dream about it. After the successes enjoyed by LespĂȘcheurs de perles and Le roi de Lahore Delibes knew what he was doing when he chose to set an adaptation of Pierre Loti's exotic Indian novel Rarahu and duly scored a hit with his opera LakmĂ© at the OpĂ©ra-Comique in 1883. The opera is nothing without a star in the title-role.

Natalie Dessay is certainly that and yet she never fails to remember that Delibes's heroine must be fragile and sensitive. Her Bell Song, brilliantly sung, is also intent on telling a story. Her singing of the death scene, with its delicate fil de voce perfectly poised each time the high A comes round, is heartfelt and leaves no doubt that this is a Lakmé who deserves to go to heaven. EMI found a worthy tenor to partner her. Gregory Kunde, as Gérald, is at ease at the top of his voice. At the first entrance of the colonial Brits, Frédéric describes Gérald as a poet and Kunde lives up to the promise by phrasing his opening solo, 'Fantaisie aux divins mensonges', with poetic sensibility. In the duets he and Dessay are tender young love personified. The supporting cast is also a decent one.

Michel Plasson gives the music room to breathe and is able to conjure a dreamy atmosphere in the scenes of romance. His Toulouse orchestra is adequate, if not exceptional, and the recording is of a good standard. What reason is there to resist?

Delibes: Lakme - Natalie Dessay

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