ABC CLASSICS | THE CLASSIC RECORDINGS
FRENCH & ITALIAN ARIAS
FRENCH & ITALIAN ARIAS
CHRISTOPH WILLIBALD GLUCK 1714-1787
1 Orphée et Eurydice – J’ai perdu mon Eurydice 3’45
JULES MASSENET 1842-1912
2 Werther – Toute mon âme est là! … Pourquoi me réveiller? 2’34
GEORGES BIZET 1838-1875
3 Les Pêcheurs de perles – Je crois entendre encore 3’36
GAETANO DONIZETTI 1797-1848
4 L’elisir d’amore – Una furtiva lagrima 4’06
BENJAMIN GODARD 1849-1895
5 Jocelyn – Oh! Ne t’éveille pas encore (Berceuse) 4’37
CHRISTOPH WILLIBALD GLUCK
6 Iphigénie en Tauride – Unis dès la plus tendre enfance 2’57
WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART 1756-1791
Don Giovanni – Dalla sua pace
GIOACHINO ROSSINI 1792-1868
8 L’italiana in Algeri – Languir per una bella
Solo Horn: James McCrow
RICCARDO BROSCHI 1698-1756
9 Idaspe – Ombra fedele anch’io
Realization: Marco Guidarini
GIOVANNI BONONCINI 1670-1747
0 Griselda – Per la gloria d’adorarvi
Realization: Marco Guidarini
ÉDOUARD LALO 1823-1892
! Le Roi d’Ys – Puisqu’on ne peut fléchir ... Vainement, ma bien-aimée 2’41
CHARLES GOUNOD 1818-1893
@ Faust – Salut! Demeure chaste et pure 4’14
Solo Violin: Marcelle Mallette
£ En fermant les yeux 2’34
$ Je suis seul … Ah, fuyez 4’42
% Don Pasquale – Povero Ernesto … E se fia che ad altro oggetto 8’12
Solo Trumpet: Yoram Levy
GIUSEPPE VERDI 1813-1901
^ La traviata – Lunge da lei … De’miei bollenti spiriti 3’24
GIACOMO PUCCINI 1858-1924
& La bohème – Che gelida manina 4’32
DAVID HOBSON b. 1960 / DAVID HIRSCHFELDER b. 1959
* In questa stanza 3’47
Solo Piano: David Hirschfelder
Total Playing Time 74’48
David Hobson tenor
Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra
Marco Guidarini conductor
It is paradoxical that in opera, the characters with whose fates we identify the most closely are those
least like the rest of us. Opera’s greatest heroes have always been cast with the highest available male
voices, be they male sopranos or tenors. And yet, despite their centrality to the operatic world, tenors
are amongst the rarest of voice types. But of course, opera is hardly a normal business. Emotions and
voices are raised to unheard-of heights, while conversations and even innermost thoughts are
declaimed at a volume audible to thousands. It is the very singularity of the tenor voice – like that of
the operatic form itself – that has always enabled it to communicate to us the most directly.
Christoph Willibald Gluck is famous for his ‘reform operas’, in which he collaborated with forwardthinking
librettists towards a more dramatically valid concept of opera. This was not necessarily
because of any great inner need on his part; two of his librettists (of whom Calzabigi, the librettist for
Orfeo ed Euridice, was one) would even claim that they were responsible for pushing Gluck in this
direction. Calzabigi had been heavily influenced by the French tragédie lyrique: particularly its use of
natural situations, realism, and a movement away from fixed dramatic structures.
I arrived in Vienna in 1761, full of these new ideas. M. Gluck was (wrongly no doubt) not then
counted among the greatest masters... I gave him my libretto of Orpheus, and declaimed several
pieces to him, pointing out the nuances which I put into my delivery, the suspensions, the slowness,
the quickness, the tone of voice, now in crescendo and then becoming weaker again, lethargic.
I explained everything to him which could be necessary for his composition. I begged him at the
same time to exclude i passaggi, le cadenze, i ritornelli and everything which is Gothic, barbaric and
extravagant in our music. M. Gluck agreed with me.
Appropriately for this compilation, Orphée et Eurydice was composed originally in Italian, with an alto
castrato in the role of Orpheus. The version in French dates from 1774, and recasts the protagonist as
an haute-contre, a species of high, light tenor. Perhaps Gluck’s most astonishing dramatic stroke (best
appreciated in the context of the full opera) is the restraint with which he treated Orpheus’ final
despairing lament J’ai perdu mon Eurydice, set in the clearest major tonality, after so much of the
character’s preceding tribulations had been in tortured minor keys (Gluck having famously urged the
original Orphée to cry out the name of Eurydice in the opera’s opening scene as though his leg had
Goethe published his Die Leiden des jungen Werthers (The Sorrows of Young Werther) in 1774; it caused
a flurry of interest at the time, inspiring at least two operas, although the initial craze had subsided
somewhat by the time Massenet came to set the story of Werther in 1892. Werther is a melancholy
poet in love with Charlotte, who is betrothed (and soon married) to his friend Albert. Werther’s feelings
mean that he must leave; Charlotte suggests that he return at Christmas, but he knows he must leave
forever. The next Christmas Charlotte laments the emptiness of her life without Werther, while reading
over the letters he has sent her. He appears suddenly, and they recall happier days spent reading to
each other; she points out on the shelf his favourite book of Ossian’s verse. He recites a poem to her
(Pourquoi me réveiller?); they fall into each others’ arms, but, horrified, she regains control and leaves.
Werther also flees; Albert appears, to find his wife trembling, and interrogates her. A servant brings in
a message from Werther: he is going on a long journey, and asks to borrow Albert’s pistols. Albert
agrees, and directs Charlotte to give them to a servant, who takes them out to Werther. As soon as
she is alone, Charlotte rushes after Werther, too late to prevent his suicide.
Around five minutes of Les Pêcheurs de perles (The Pearl Fishers) by the 25-year-old Georges Bizet is
very well-known indeed; the rest is comparatively obscure. The famous duet is between the Hindu
wartime comrades Nadir and Zurga, recalling an expedition in which they halted at a temple to hear a
young priestess sing. Zurga has been appointed leader of the pearl fishers, according to an ancient
custom of choosing a leader by casting lots. According to another ancient custom, a virgin hidden by a
veil must sing prayers while the divers work, to protect them from evil spirits; the chosen girl is Leïla,
whom Nadir recognises as the girl the comrades have already admired from a distance. In Je crois
entendre encore, Nadir recalls again that evening: he is in love with her. Their forbidden love is
eventually discovered, and they are both condemned to die at the stake; Zurga sets fire to the village at
the cost of his own life to let the lovers escape, having recognised Leïla as one who had previously
saved his life.
Donizetti’s L’elisir d’amore (The Elixir of Love) takes place in a small village; Una furtiva lagrima occurs
near the end of the opera. The simple Nemorino is in love with the much-in-demand Adina; his rival is
the dashing sergeant Belcore. Nemorino asks the travelling Doctor Dulcamara for a love potion.
Dulcamara has just the thing (a flask of Bordeaux), although it takes 24 hours (ample escape time for
an itinerant quack) to have its full effect once the now-confident Nemorino has drunk it. Adina returns,
and a messenger arrives with an order for Belcore’s regiment to leave the next day; Adina agrees to
marry Belcore on the spot. Nemorino asks Dulcamara for another dose of the potion to speed things
up, but has no money; in desperation, Nemorino enlists in Belcore’s regiment, receiving 20 scudi in
return, and seemingly setting the seal on a complete victory for Belcore.
Something far more effective than a love potion then comes Nemorino’s way: his rich uncle has died,
leaving Nemorino a vast fortune. Nemorino – the last to know – is surprised to find his popularity with
the ladies increasing, and attributes this to the effects of the potion. Adina is also surprised. Dulcamara
boasts to her of the effects of the potion: Nemorino has even (he explains) sold his freedom to Belcore
to obtain a little more of it for the sake of winning her. She is touched; as she and Dulcamara leave,
Nemorino enters. He has seen a “single furtive tear” welling in her eye, and knows his love is
returned; a suspicion confirmed when she returns, having bought back Nemorino’s army contract from
Belcore. (This must have had a certain resonance for Donizetti – a patroness in Bergamo had paid for
his own exemption from service in the Austrian armed forces some years before.) There is, of course,
general rejoicing; even Belcore acknowledges that there are plenty of fish in the sea.
Benjamin Godard was professionally a viola player; he enjoyed great success as a composer of salon
music, and turned to opera in the 1880s. Jocelyn (an opera in four acts, with a libretto by Armand
Silvestre and Victor Capoul after Lamartine’s poem) is his opus 100, dating from 1888. As with Les
Pêcheurs de Perles, it is known by just a single excerpt, the Berceuse. In a rather splendid irony, it
became for many years quite ubiquitous, being not only sung but arranged for many instruments in
need of some extra repertoire – euphoniums not excluded. The Jocelyn of the title is a priest at the
time of post-French Revolutionary terror, who takes refuge in a mountain sanctuary; the plot concerns
his doomed love for the girl Laurence, whom he has taken into his care – at first believing her to be a
young boy – after the death of her father. (The two main characters’ names of course both apply to
the opposite gender in English – perhaps indeed a small factor in the continuing obscurity of the
opera as a whole.)
Gluck’s Iphigénie en Tauride, most unusually, has no recitatives: the drama takes the form of dramatic
scenes interspersed with ariosos, in a continuous manner more associated nowadays with late
Wagner. Indeed it is much more a ‘reform’ opera than Orfeo/Orphée: it has often been regarded since
as his most important and influential work, although it is nowadays only rarely heard. Unis dès la plus
tendre enfance is sung by the character Pylades as he and Orestes lie in a dungeon. They have been
shipwrecked on the shore of the land of the Taurians; unfortunately for them, the king Thoas has had a
vision of dangers threatening his life, and orders his priestesses to sacrifice the two victims. Orestes
mourns his fate; Pylades rejoices that at least they, friends since earliest childhood, shall die together.
(The sacrifice eventually does not proceed – principally because the priestess given the task of
performing the sacrifice itself, is Iphigenia, Orestes’ long-lost sister.)
Mozart’s Don Giovanni did not contain the aria Dalla sua pace at its first (Prague) performance in 1787;
it was added for the Vienna premiere, in which the tenor seems to have found his original aria Il mio
tesoro unsuitable. (Tenors often nowadays end up singing both; Mozart and da Ponte would no doubt
have been impressed, but a little concerned that the carefully-calculated balance of the various
characters – and of the social classes they represent – might be in danger of being upset.) As the
opera opens, Don Ottavio’s fiancée Donna Anna has withstood an attempted seduction by a masked
intruder – at least that is what she says to Don Ottavio, although various directors choose to interpret
things differently. The intruder (Don Giovanni) has killed Donna Anna’s father in escaping, and Donna
Anna has sworn Don Ottavio to vengeance. On meeting Don Giovanni later in the street, she
recognises his voice, and tells Don Ottavio who her assailant was. Don Ottavio cannot believe a
nobleman capable of such a crime, but his peace of mind depends on hers, and he resolves to discover
the truth. In the end, divine justice catches up with the Don more swiftly than the earthly variety.
Rossini’s L’italiana in Algeri boasts a few unusual features – such as a chorus of eunuchs sung by the
tenors and basses. Less unusual is the position near the beginning of a bravura cavatina (Languir per
una bella) for a tenor character by the name of Lindoro (also the alias taken by Count Almaviva, who
sings the opening cavatina of Il barbiere di Siviglia). This Lindoro is a slave to Mustafa, the Bey of
Algiers. He laments his separation from his beloved Isabella, who turns up soon enough in a ship,
which runs aground on the nearby rocks. Mustafa wishes to marry this new Italian woman and marry
his own wife Elvira off to Lindoro. Perhaps all we need to know here is that after sundry ingenious
ruses and much coloratura, all ends happily.
Riccardo Broschi’s works fell into almost complete obscurity after (indeed, even some time before) his
death in 1756. He is known today principally as the brother of the legendary castrato soprano Farinelli
(the stage name of Carlo Broschi), for whom he wrote many showpieces. Even in that capacity he was
scarcely known until the recent film Farinelli, which made use of some elaborate technology to create
a stupendous computer-generated voice for its protagonist. This is one of those showpieces; the opera
Idaspe was first performed in Venice in 1730, with Farinelli singing Ombra fedele anch’io in the role
Like both Broschis, Giovanni Bononcini was a contemporary of Handel; his opera Griselda was
premiered in London’s King’s Theatre in 1722. (His brother Antonio Maria (1677-1726) had composed an
opera on the subject four years previously, nowadays even more obscure.) Per la gloria d’adorarvi is
sung by the character Ernesto – again, originally a castrato, although many tenors (including Pavarotti)
have enjoyed great success with it. Bononcini likewise enjoyed great popularity with Griselda in his day,
going so far as to threaten Handel’s pre-eminence as a composer of Italian opera in London. Handel
eventually won the day – and in a strange twist, Bononcini was, in 1731, forced to leave London,
accused of presenting a madrigal by Lotti as his own work. He spent the rest of his days financing a
fruitless search by a certain Count Ughi for the Philosopher’s Stone.
Édouard Lalo was a friend of violin virtuoso Pablo Sarasate; his Symphonie espagnole for violin and
orchestra is his only piece to be at all regularly played nowadays. He wrote much instrumental music,
but branched out into dramatic composition after marrying the singer Julie Besnier de Maligny – the
original Margared in Le Roi d’Ys – in 1865. Le Roi d’Ys was composed in 1875, based on a Breton
legend (his wife came from Brittany in north-western France, and supplied him with some authentic
Breton folksongs which found their way into some of the opera’s choruses). It was, unfortunately, not
staged until 1888. Lalo’s first operatic success thus came at the age of 65, by which time his skills as a
composer were in decline, and he did not eventually capitalise on the success of this work.
The legend is of the submerged city of Ys (also immortalised by Debussy in his piano prelude
La cathédrale engloutie); the plot concerns not so much the (unnamed) King himself as his daughter
Margared. The opera opens with her about to be married to Karnac, the King’s former enemy; she
confesses to her sister Rozenn that her true love is Mylio. Mylio is also loved by Rozenn, who returns
unexpectedly, causing the cancellation of Margared’s wedding; Karnac swears revenge and curses the
city. On learning that Mylio loves Rozenn, Margared is overcome by jealousy, and plots with Karnac to
flood the city by opening the sluices that protect it from the sea. The lovers are married (Mylio sings
Vainement, ma bien-aimée while awaiting Rozenn’s arrival at their wedding); Margared appears at the
conclusion of the ceremony, announcing the doom of the city. As the waters engulf the city, Margared
confesses her complicity with Karnac in flooding Ys; the citizens cry for her death, but Rozenn, Mylio
and the King plead forgiveness. Margared climbs a high rock and throws herself into the waves; with a
thunderclap, supernatural intervention appears in the form of Saint-Corentin, calming the waves in
response to her sacrifice.
Like Gluck and Calzabigi before them, Gounod and his librettists Barbier and Carré in their 1859
treatment of Faust found themselves attempting to improve upon a less dramatically potent model:
this time the unlucky predecessor was Meyerbeer, whose inclinations toward purely visual spectacle,
sometimes at the expense of human characterisation, were of no great interest to Gounod and his
colleagues. In Gounod’s own words: “France is essentially the country of precision, neatness and
taste, that is to say the opposite of excess, pretentiousness, disproportion, longwindedness.”
Near the beginning of Act III, Faust and Mephistopheles have arrived at Marguerite’s house; Faust’s
rival Siebel has left a bouquet behind, but Mephistopheles leaves on Faust’s behalf a casket of jewels
(the famous ‘Jewel Song’, in which Marguerite tries them on, is not far away). While Mephistopheles
is away fetching the casket, Faust sings Salut! Demeure chaste et pure in praise of Marguerite’s
beauty and innocence. On Mephistopheles’ return, Faust wants no more to do with the plan, but
Mephistopheles insists, and by the act’s end Marguerite has succumbed.
The story of the fate of Manon Lescaut and her many admirers has attracted many composers
(including Auber and Puccini, besides Massenet). At the end of Act II of Massenet’s version, Manon’s
lover Des Grieux is sharing an apartment with her in Paris, and Des Grieux has decided to marry
Manon. Des Grieux’s rival De Brétigny arrives with Manon’s cousin (Lescaut) – they inform Manon that
Des Grieux will be abducted that night. If she flees with him, Des Grieux will lose his inheritance and
she will be forced to live in poverty; if she keeps silent, De Brétigny and a vast fortune will be hers.
They leave, and Des Grieux returns, daydreaming of a country retreat for them (En fermant les yeux).
There is a knock at the door; she pleads with him not to answer it, but in vain, and he is spirited away,
at least for the time being. In Act III, Des Grieux has temporarily succeeded in banishing Manon from
his mind, and is about to take his vows as a priest. Alone at the church of Saint-Sulpice, he celebrates
his victory over worldly passions (Je suis seul… Ah, fuyez!). His self-control lasts precisely until
Manon (who has left De Brétigny) arrives at the church; not for the first time, they elope together.
In Donizetti’s Don Pasquale, Ernesto (the rich old Don’s nephew) has refused to marry the woman
chosen for him by Pasquale, and so the Don decides to get married himself, disinheriting Ernesto. The
Don’s doctor has chosen his own sister for the privilege; however, he is double-crossing the Don,
intending to disguise Norina (Ernesto’s beloved), pass her off as his sister, and induce her to make
Pasquale’s life so miserable that he will gladly give her up to Ernesto. At the beginning of Act II,
Ernesto does not know this; he only knows that he must seek a distant land where he can lament his
lost beloved – Povero Ernesto … E se fia che ad altro oggetto.
Alfredo Germont sings Lunge da lei at the opening of Act II of La traviata; he has just returned (from a
hunting expedition) to the country house outside Paris which for three months he has shared with the
courtesan Violetta Valéry. Like many of the arias here, it is a vision of illusory happiness. Unknown to
him, they have no money, and have for some time been living from the sale of Violetta’s possessions.
As well, his own father Giorgio will soon come to tear the couple apart: Alfredo’s sister’s engagement
is under threat if Alfredo does not renounce his tainted lover. (Giorgio does not even do his son the
courtesy of telling him, instead making Violetta feel guilty enough about the situation to pretend to
leave Alfredo for another admirer.)
In 1893, Giacomo Puccini mentioned to his colleague Ruggero Leoncavallo (composer of Pagliacci) that
he was working on an opera based on Henry Murger’s Scènes de la vie de bohème (Scenes from
Bohemian Life) – he had forgotten not only that Leoncavallo had already begun work on an opera on
the same subject, but that he had offered Puccini his own libretto first. The controversy immediately
reached the newspapers, Leoncavallo’s plans being publicly announced in Il secolo the following day
and Puccini’s in Corriere della sera the day after. The shape of the opera also cost Puccini and his
librettists Giuseppe Giacosa and Luigi Illica much effort over some years. The premiere of La bohème in
January 1896 did not meet with spectacular success, but within a few months, the public had come
round. Che gelida manina (long known in English as Your tiny hand is frozen) is only one of the opera’s
showstoppers, and not the only one to have been an afterthought in Puccini’s plan: it follows shortly
after the meeting of neighbours Mimì and Rodolfo. The writer Rodolfo shares a garret apartment with
three artist friends; they are on their way to the Café Momus while he finishes an article. Mimì enters
– her candle has gone out. She nearly faints, dropping her key – Rodolfo blows out his candle too, and
hides her key when he finds it. Thanks to Rodolfo’s stratagem, their hands touch in the dark – Mimì’s is
cold, and Rodolfo suggests he warm it, with unsurprising consequences. (The consequences were on
one occasion rather more surprising for Dame Nellie Melba, playing Mimì opposite Caruso’s Rodolfo.
The not-necessarily-reliable legend has it that he slipped into her hand a piping hot sausage.)
Puccini’s opera dealing with great tragedies in a tiny room forms a perfect, if unexpected, segue to
In questa stanza. In its English version, this was the title track of the 1999 album Inside This Room, in
which longtime friends David Hobson and David Hirschfelder (composer of the music for the films
Shine and Elizabeth) explored a wide range of musical styles. The mood of both music and text is
distinctly melancholy, exploring the capacity of a beloved place to evoke intense memories; this is
paralleled by the solo piano interludes in an overtly ‘bygone’ style.
Carl Rosman © 2000
1 J’ai perdu mon Eurydice I have lost my Eurydice
J’ai perdu mon Eurydice, I have lost my Eurydice,
Rien n’égale mon malheur. Nothing equals my unhappiness.
Sort cruel! Quelle rigueur Cruel fate! What harsh severity!
Rien n’égale mon malheur, Nothing equals my unhappiness!
Je succombe à ma douleur. I am overwhelmed by grief!
Eurydice, Eurydice, réponds, quel supplice! Eurydice! Eurydice! Answer me, oh what torture!
Réponds-moi! Speak to me!
C’est ton époux fidèle; It is your faithful husband;
Entends ma voix qui t’appelle. Hear my voice calling you!
J’ai perdu mon Eurydice etc. I have lost my Eurydice, etc.
Eurydice, Eurydice, mortel silence, Eurydice, Eurydice, deathly silence!
Vaine espérance, quelle souffrance! Vain hope! What agony!
Quel tourment déchire mon cœur! What torture wrings my heart!
J’ai perdu mon Eurydice, etc. I have lost my Eurydice, etc.
Pierre Louis Moline
2 Toute mon âme est là! … My whole soul is there! …
Pourquoi me réveiller? Why awaken me?
Toute mon âme est là! My whole soul is there!
Pourquoi me réveiller, ô souffle du Printemps? Why awaken me, O breath of spring?
Pourquoi me réveiller? Why awaken me?
Sur mon front je sens tes caresses On my brow I feel thy caresses,
Et pourtant bien proche est le temps and yet close at hand is the time
Des orages et des tristesses! of storms and sorrows!
Pourquoi me réveiller, ô souffle du Printemps? Why awaken me, O breath of spring?
Demain, dans le vallon, viendra le voyageur, Tomorrow, into the valley, will come the traveller,
Se souvenant de ma gloire première. remembering my former glory.
Et ses yeux vainement chercheront ma splendeur: And vainly will his eyes seek my splendour:
ils ne trouveront plus que deuil et que misère! they will find only misery and grief!
Pourquoi me réveiller, ô souffle du Printemps? Why awaken me, O breath of spring?
Édouard Blau, Paul Milliet
& Georges Hartmann
3 Je crois entendre encore I believe I can still hear her voice
Je crois entendre encore, I believe I can still hear,
Caché sous les palmiers, hidden under the palm-trees,
Sa voix tendre et sonore, her tender and sonorous voice
Comme un chant de ramiers. singing like a dove’s.
Ô nuit enchanteresse, O bewitching night,
Divin ravissement exquisite rapture,
Ô souvenir charmant, O charming memory,
Folle ivresse, doux rêve! mad elation, sweet dream!
Aux clartés des étoiles Under the light of the stars
Je crois encore la voir I can almost see her
Entr’ouvrir ses longs voiles opening her long veils a little
Aux vents tièdes du soir, to the tepid evening breeze.
Ô nuit enchanteresse, etc. O bewitching night etc.
Charmant souvenir! Charming memory!
Eugène Cormon & Michel Carré
4 Una furtiva lagrima A furtive tear
Una furtiva lagrima A furtive tear
negl’occhi suoi spuntò: welled up in her eye:
quelle festose giovani those carefree girls
invidiar sembrò: she seemed to envy:
che più cercando io vo’? why should I look any further?
M’ama, sì, m’ama, She loves me, yes, she loves me.
lo vedo, lo vedo. I can see it, I can see it.
Un solo istante i palpiti To feel for just one moment
del suo bel cor sentir! the beating of her dear heart!
I miei sospir confondere To blend my sighs
per poco a suoi sospir! for a little with hers!
Cielo, si può morir; Heavens, I could die;
di più non chiedo, I ask for nothing more.
si può morir d’amor. I could die of love.
5 Berceuse Lullaby
Cachés dans cet asile où Dieu nous a conduits Hidden in this sanctuary where God has led us,
Unis par le malheur, durant les longues nuits joined by misfortune, through the long nights
Nous reposons tout deux endormis sous leurs voiles we both rest, sleeping under their veils
Où prions aux regard des tremblantes étoiles! where we pray under the gaze of the twinkling stars.
Oh! ne t’éveille pas encore Oh! do not wake up yet
Pour qu’un bel ange de ton rève May a beautiful angel in your dream
En déroulant son long fil d’or, By unfurling its long gold thread
Enfant, permette qu’il s’achève. Allow this child to dream on.
Dors! dors! le jour à peine a lui. Sleep! sleep! The day is hardly here.
Vierge sainte, veillez sur lui! Holy virgin, care for him!
Sous l’aile du Seigneur loin du bruit de la foule Under the Lord’s wing, far from the noise of the crowds,
Et comme un flot sacré qui doucement s’écoule like a sacred river which flows gently
Nous avons vu les jours passer après les jours we have seen the days pass by:
Sans jamais nous lasser d’implorer son secours! we never weary of imploring his help!
Oh! ne t’éveille pas encore... Oh! do not wake up yet...
Victor Capoul & Armand Silvestre
6 Unis dès la plus tendre enfants United since our tenderest childhood
Unis dès la plus tender enfance United since our tenderest childhood,
Nous n’avions qu’un même désir: we had but one and the same desire.
Ah! Mon cœur applaudit d’avance Ah! my heart applauds in advance
Au coup qui va nous réunir! the blow that will reunite us!
Le sort nous fait périr ensemble, Fate decrees that we will perish together:
N’en accuse point la rigueur. do not reprove its harshness.
La mort même est une faveur, Death is itself a favour,
Puisque le tombeau nous rassemble. since the grave unites us.
7 Dalla sua pace On her peace of mind
Dalla sua pace la mia dipende; On her peace of mind my own depends;
Quel che a lei piace vita mi rende, her wishes are the breath of life to me,
Quel che le incresce morte mi dà, her griefs stab me to the heart.
S’ella sospira, sospiro anch’io, When she sighs, I sigh too,
Ė mia quell’ira, quel pianto è mio! I share her anger and her tears.
E non ho bene s’ella non l’ha. And there’s no joy for me if she has none.
Dalla sua pace la mia dipende... On her peace of mind my own depends...
Lorenzo Da Ponte
8 Languir per una bella To languish for a beauty
Languir per una bella To languish for a beauty
E star lontano da quella, and be far away from her
È il più crudel tormento is the cruellest torment
Che provar possa un cor. that a heart can undergo.
Forse verrà il momento; Perhaps the moment will come;
Ma non lo spero ancor. but I cannot hope for it yet.
Contenta quest’alma My soul, content
In mezzo alle pene amidst its woes,
Sol trova la calma finds peace only
Pensando al suo bene, in thinking of my dear one,
Che sempre costante to whom it remains
Si serba in amor. ever faithful in love.
9 Ombra fedele anch’io
Faithful in death
Ombra fedele anch’io Faithful in death, my soul too
Sul margine di lete on Lethe’s bank
Seguir vo’ l’Idol mio shall follow my idol
Che tanto adoro. whom I so adore.
Giovanni Pietro Candi
0 Per la gloria a’dorarvi
For the glory of adoring you
Per la gloria d’adorarvi For the glory of adoring you
voglio amarvi, I want to love you,
o luci care. O beloved eyes.
Amando penerò, Loving, I shall suffer,
ma sempre v’amerò, but always will I love you
sì, sì, nel mio penare, yes, even in my suffering.
penerò, I will suffer
v’amerò, but I will love you,
luci care. O beloved eyes.
Senza speme di diletto Without hope of bliss
vano affetto it is useless
è sospirare, to sigh,
ma i vostri dolci rai yet who can ever admire
chi vagheggiar può mai your sweet eyes
e non v’amare? and not love you?
penerò, I will suffer
v’amerò, but I will love you,
luci care! O beloved eyes.
! Puisqu’on ne peut fléchir … Since they cannot be swayed …
Vainement, ma bien-aimée In vain
Puisqu’on ne peut fléchir ces jalouses gardiennes, Since these jealous guardians cannot be swayed,
Ah! laissez-moi Ah! let me
Conter mes peines recount my sorrows
Et mon émoi. and my agitation.
Vainement, ma bien-aimée! In vain, my beloved,
On croit me désespérer; do they seek to take away my hope;
Près de ta porte fermée Here at your shut gate
Je veux encore demeurer. I still want to remain.
Les soleils pourront s’éteindre, Suns will be extinguished,
Les nuits remplacer les jours, nights will replace the days,
Sans t’accuser et sans me plaindre. before I blame you or feel sorry for myself.
Là, je resterai toujours. There, I will always remain.
Je le sais, ton âme est douce, I know your heart is tender,
Et l’heure bientôt viendra and the hour soon will come
Où la main qui me repousse where the hand which pushes me away
Vers la mienne se tendra. will reach out to mine.
Ne sois pas trop tardive Do not wait too long
A te laisser attendrir, before letting yourself give in to tenderness.
Si Rozenn bientôt n’arrive, If Rozenn does not arrive soon,
Je vais, hélas! mourir. alas! I shall die.
@ Salut! Demeure chaste et pure Greetings, chaste and pure abode
Salut! Demeure chaste et pure, où se devine Greetings, chaste and pure abode, where one divines
La présence d’une âme innocente et divine! the presence of a soul pure and holy!
Que de richesse en cette pauvreté! What riches in this poverty!
En ce réduit, que de félicité! In this retreat, what happiness!
Ô nature, c’est là que tu la fis si belle! O Nature, it is here you made her so beautiful!
C’est là que cette enfant a dormi sous ton aile, It is here this child slumbered beneath your wing,
A grandi sous tes yeux! grew up beneath your eye,
Là que, de ton haleine enveloppant son âme, here that, enfolding her soul in your breath,
Tu fis avec amour épanouir la femme with love you made blossom the woman
En cet ange des cieux! within this angel of heaven!
C’est là! oui! C’est là! It is here, yes, here!
Salut! Demeure chaste et pure, etc. Greetings, chaste and pure abode, etc.
Jules Barbier & Michel Carré
£ En fermant les yeux When I close my eyes
En fermant les yeux, je vois When I close my eyes, I see
Là-bas ... une humble retraite, in the distance … a humble retreat,
Une maisonnette a little house,
Toute blanche au fond des bois! all white, in the depths of the woods!
Sous ses tranquilles ombrages In its tranquil shade
Les clairs et joyeux ruisseaux, clear and merry brooks,
Où se mirent les feuillages, in which the leaves are reflected,
Chantent avec les oiseaux! sing with the birds!
C’est le paradis! ... Oh non! It is paradise! ... But no!
Tout est là triste et morose, All is sad and morose there,
Car il y manque une chose, because it is missing one thing,
Il y faut encore Manon! it still needs Manon!
Viens! Là sera notre vie, Come! That’s where we shall live,
Si tu le veux, ô Manon! if you wish it, O Manon!
Henri Meilhac & Philippe Gille
$ Je suis seul … Ah, fuyez I am alone … Ah! Away with you
Je suis seul! Seul enfin! I am alone. Alone at last!
C’est le moment suprême! This is the supreme moment!
Il n’est plus rien que j’aime There is nothing more that I want
Que le repos sacré que m’apporte la foi! except the sacred calm that my faith brings me.
Oui, j’ai voulu mettre Dieu même Yes, I have sought to place God himself
Entre le monde et moi! between the world and me.
Ah! Fuyez, douce image, à mon âme trop chère; Ah! Away with you, sweet memory too dear to my heart.
Respectez un repos cruellement gagné, Respect a calm won through much suffering,
Et songez si j’ai bu dans une coupe amère, and remember that if I have tasted of a bitter cup,
Que mon cœur l’emplirait de ce qu’il a saigné! my heart could fill it full with the blood it has shed.
Ah! Fuyez! Fuyez! loin de moi! Ah! Away with you, go far from me!
Ah! Fuyez! Ah! Begone!
Que m’importe la vie et ce semblant de gloire? Life itself and sham glory mean nothing to me.
Je ne veux que chasser du fond de ma mémoire… I want only to expel from the depths of my memory
un nom maudit! …ce nom…qui m’obsède a cursed name…this name…which obsesses me,
et pourquoi? and why?
Mon Dieu! Heavenly Father!
De votre flamme with your fire
Purifiez mon âme… purify my soul,
Et dissipez à sa lueur and by its light dispel
L’ombre qui passe encore dans le fond de the shadow that still lurks in the depths of
mon cœur! … my heart!
Ah! fuyez, douce image, à mon âme trop chère! Ah! Begone, sweet memory too dear to my heart.
Ah fuyez! fuyez! loin de moi! Get you gone, far from me!
Henri Meilhac & Philippe Gille
% Povero Ernesto … Poor Ernesto …
E se fia che ad altro oggetto And if your heart should turn to another
Povero Ernesto! Poor Ernesto!
Dallo zio cacciato, Thrown out by my uncle,
da tutti abbandonato, deserted by all,
mi restava un amico one friend remained to me
e un coperto nemico and I find in him an enemy
discopro in lui, in disguise
che a’ danni miei congiura. who is conspiring to do me harm.
Perder Norina, oh Dio! Lose Norina, oh God!
Ben feci a lei How right I was
d’esprimere in un foglio to make her party
i sensi miei. to my sentiments in a letter.
Ora in altra contrada In some other region now
i giorni grami a trascinar si vada. let me drag out my wretched days.
Cercherò lontana terra I’ll seek some far-off land
dove gemer sconosciuto, where I can sigh unknown,
là vivrò col cuore in guerra there I shall live, with my heart at war,
deplorando il ben perduto. lamenting my lost beloved...
Ma né sorte a me nemica, But neither unkind fate,
né frapposti monti e mar, nor seas and mountains in between.
ti potranno, dolce amica, will be able, sweetest friend,
dal mio core cancellar. to efface your image from my heart...
E se fia che ad altro oggetto And if it should happen that your heart
tu rivolga un giorno il core, should turn some day towards another,
se mai fia che un nuovo affetto if it should ever come about that some new affection
spenga in te l’antico ardore, should extinguish the old flame,
non temer che un infelice never fear that your unhappy swain
te spergiura accusi al ciel; will accuse you before heaven of being untrue;
se tu sei, ben mio, felice, if, my precious, you are happy,
sarà pago il tuo fedel. your faithful lover will be satisfied.
Cercherò lontana terra... I will seek some far-off land...
Giovanni Ruffini & Gaetano Donizetti
^ Lunge da lei … De’miei bollenti spiriti Far from her … My passionate spirit
Lunge da lei per me non v’ha diletto! Life holds no pleasure for me when I’m far from her!
Volaron già tre lune Three months have already flown by
dacchè la mia Violetta since Violetta for my sake gave up
agi per me lasciò, dovizie, amori her easy, luxurious life of love affairs
e le pompose feste, and expensive parties
ov’agli omaggi avvezza where she was accustomed to the homage
vedea schiavo ciascun di sua bellezza. of all those enslaved by her beauty.
Ed or contenta in questi ameni luoghi And now, contented in this charming place,
tutto scorda per me. she forgets it all for me.
Quì presso a lei io rinascer mi sento, With her beside me, I feel myself reborn,
e dal soffio d’amor rigenerato revived by the breath of love,
scordo ne’ gaudi suoi tutto il passato. forgetting the past in present delights.
De’miei bollenti spiriti My passionate spirit
Il giovanile ardore and the fire of youth
Ella temprò col placido she tempers with the
Sorriso dell’amor! gentle smile of love!
Dal dì che disse: vivere Since the day when she told me,
io voglio a te fedel “I want to live faithful to you alone!”
Dell’universo immemore I have forgotten the world
io vivo quasi in ciel. And lived like one in heaven.
Francesco Maria Piave
& Che gelida manina How cold your little hand is!
Che gelida manina! How cold your little hand is!
Se la lasci riscaldar. Let me warm it for you.
Cercar che giova? What’s the use of searching?
Al buio non si trova. We’ll never find it in the dark.
Ma per fortuna But luckily
È una notte di luna, there’s a moon,
E qui la luna l’abbiamo vicina. and she’s our neighbour here.
Aspetti, signorina, Wait, young lady,
Le dirò con due parole, let me tell you in a word
Chi son, e che faccio, come vivo. who I am, what I do, how I live.
Vuole? Shall I?
Chi son? Son un poeta. Who am I? I’m a poet.
Che cosa faccio? Scrivo. What do I do? I write.
E come vivo? Vivo. How do I live? I live!
In povertà mia lieta In my happy poverty,
Scialo da gran signore like a great lord, I squander
Rime ed inni d’amore. poems and songs of love.
Per sogni e per chimere When it comes to hopes and dreams
E per castelli in aria and castles-in-air
L’anima ho milionaria. I’m a millionaire in spirit.
Talor dal mio forziere But sometimes my strong-box
Ruban tutti i gioielli is robbed of all its jewels
Due ladri: gli occhi belli. by two thieves: a pair of pretty eyes.
V’entrar con coi pur ora They came in just now with you
Ed i miei sogni usati, and all my usual dreams,
Ed i bei sogni miei my lovely dreams,
Tosto si dileguar! soon melted away.
Ma il furto non m’accora But the theft doesn’t upset me,
Poiché v’ha preso stanza since the empty place was filled
La speranza. with hope.
Or che mi conoscete Now that you know me,
Parlate voi. Deh parlate. it’s your turn to speak.
Chi siete? Vi piaccia dir? Who are you? Will you tell me?
Luigi Illica & Giuseppe Giacosa
* In questa stanza Inside this room
La nostra stanza This room we shared for years
É ancora qui Still looks the same
Dove ci amammo, It held our silent fears
Dove l’amor fini Our secret love and pain
É ancora uguale, And as the sky moved by
Ma noi non siamo piü, And life was rearranged
Il tempo ha un’altra éta This room has never changed
Le ore qui con te – son morte, The hours spent with you were only to disappear
In questa stanza che – Inside this room
Il vento sta sfiorando The breeze is calling
Portando via le foglie Now leaves are softly falling
Portando via stagioni As time gives way to seasons
Tacendo le ragioni – dei nostri We seek out endless reasons
Cuori andati in mille pezzi Why two hearts once together lie in pieces
E dentro qui, l’odore ancor – Inside this room
Di un tempo andato e il pianto A stale perfume
D’oggi amaro; And bitter tears where roses used to bloom
Eravamo ciechi, schiavi nel tepore How were we to know
Delle ore lente, Imprisoned by the glow
Ore che son scomparse Hours passing slowly only to disappear
Dentro qui Inside this room
Passan le stagioni, Time gives way to seasons
Senza dar ragioni – dei nostri Seeking endless reasons
Cuori andati in mille pezzi Why two hearts once together lie in pieces
E dentro qui, Inside this room
Ti abbraccio ancor One last embrace
Per non dimenticare il viso tuo, To keep alive the memory of your face
L’amore che ci uni The love I won’t replace
Le labbra, il tuo sapor, Your lips, your touch, your taste
E quanto fu sciupato solo per scomparire And all that’s gone to waste, only to disappear
Dentro qui. Inside this room.
Italian translation by Paola Rosetti Nick Smith
Australian tenor and composer David Hobson is one of Australia’s best-known operatic and recording
artists. He has sung many roles for Opera Australia and both state and international opera companies,
including award-winning interpretations of Rodolfo (La bohème) and the title role in Orphée.
Other roles include Don Ottavio (Don Giovanni), Ferrando (Così fan tutte), Count Almaviva (The Barber
of Seville), Nadir (The Pearl Fishers), Lindoro (The Italian Girl in Algiers), Frederic (The Pirates of
Penzance) and The Architect in the world premiere of The Eighth Wonder.
His engagements have included the world premiere of Dangerous Liaisons with the San Francisco
Opera, a performance in the Great Hall, Canberra for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, and singing the
national anthem at the AFL Grand Final. He is also well known from his appearances in Carols in the
Domain, Carols by Candlelight, on the popular television shows Spicks and Specks, It Takes Two and
Dancing with the Stars, and as a presenter on the Foxtel arts channel STVDIO.
Recordings include The Promise, A Little Closer, Presenting David Hobson, The Exquisite Hour, Cinema
Paradiso, French and Italian Arias, Handel Arias, Inside This Room (with David Hirschfelder), Tenor and
Baritone (with Anthony Warlow), You’ll Never Walk Alone (with Teddy Tahu Rhodes) and Singing for Love
(with Yvonne Kenny), the latter two recordings occupying the Number 1 position on the Classical music
charts for several weeks. His most recent recording Enchanted Way (a collection of folk songs from the
British Isles) was another Number 1 chart success and received an ARIA (Australian Record Industry
Association) nomination. David’s compositions include a music-theatre version of Macbeth, the
chamber opera Remembering Rosie, and the soundtrack to the film One Perfect Day, which was
awarded Best Score by the Australian Film Critics Association.
David has won numerous awards including Operatic Performer of the Year, the Sydney Critics Circle
Award, The Age Performing Arts Award for Best Performer in Opera, an ARIA Award and an Australian
Film Critics Circle Award for best film score.
Recent highlights have included the title role in Leonard Bernstein’s Candide with Opera Australia for
the Sydney Festival; Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus and Danilo in The Merry Widow, also for Opera
Australia; his cabaret show Am I Really Here? which played to packed houses at the Adelaide Cabaret
Festival; Schubert’s Winterreise for the Queensland Symphony Orchestra; and national concert tours
with soprano Yvonne Kenny and bass-baritone Teddy Tahu Rhodes.
Marco Guidarini has a broad and comprehensive
education in classics, composition and the cello. He
studied conducting with Mario Gusulla and Franco
Ferrara and became assistant to John Eliot Gardiner
at the Opéra National de Lyon, where he made his
opera debut conducting Falstaff. He has gone on to
conduct at the opera houses of Los Angeles,
Dallas, Minneapolis, Sydney, Nice, Montpellier,
Marseilles, Bologna, Berlin (Deutsche Oper),
Munich (Bayerische Staatsoper), Welsh National
Opera, Scottish Opera, English National Opera,
Stockholm, Oslo, Copenhagen and at many
festivals, notably Wexford and Martina Franca.
In the concert hall, he has conducted the Orchestra della RAI in Rome, the Accademia Teatro alla Scala
in Milan, Orchestra Regionale Toscana, Orchestra Comunale di Bologna, Orchestra del Teatro Carlo
Felice Genova, Haydn Orchestra Bolzano, Orchestra Sinfonica di Bari, Orchestre National de France,
Stockholm Chamber Orchestra, Southwest German Radio Symphony Orchestra Baden-Baden, Halle
Staatskapelle, Symphony Orchestras of Valencia, Málaga and Asturias in Spain, Hong Kong
Philharmonic Orchestra, Japan Virtuoso Symphony Orchestra, Les Violons du Roi in Montréal, and the
Melbourne Symphony Orchestra.
Between 2001 and 2009 Marco Guidarini was Chief Conductor of the Orchestre Philharmonique de
Nice and Musical Director of Opéra de Nice, where his productions included Don Giovanni, La bohème,
The Magic Flute, Carmen, Idomeneo, A Masked Ball, Salome, Pelléas et Mélisande, Turandot,
Wozzeck, Nabucco, Macbeth, Aida and Wolf Ferrari’s La vedova scaltra. Other engagements have
included Rigoletto at the Metropolitan Opera New York and the Savonlinna Opera Festival in Finland, La
Damnation de Faust and Aida in Leipzig, Verdi’s La battaglia di Legnano at the Teatro San Carlo in
Naples, Aida and Carmen at the Stade de France in Paris, Leoncavallo’s La bohème for Klangbogen
Wien, Gluck’s Orphée with Roberto Alagna in Montpellier, Anna Bolena for the Teatro Massimo
Palermo, Don Carlos in Strasbourg and Oslo, Lucia di Lammermoor at the Orange Festival, Simon
Boccanegra for the Canadian Opera Company, Toronto, and concert performances of Verdi’s Il corsaro at
the Teatre Liceu, Barcelona.
Marco Guidarini’s recordings include Puccini’s Le villi with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio
France (Grand Prix du Disque, 2004), Alfano’s Cyrano de Bergerac with Roberto Alagna for Deutsche
Grammophon, Macbeth, Il trovatore, Mascagni’s Roma and Idomeneo (DVD) on the Dynamic label,
Simon Boccanegra for MMT, and an album of Poulenc orchestral works with the Orchestre
Philharmonique de Nice.
Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra
For more than six decades the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra has been at the forefront of concert life
in Tasmania. Established in 1948 and declared a Tasmanian Icon in 1998, the TSO gives more than 60
concerts annually including seasons in Hobart and Launceston, and appearances in Tasmanian regional
centres. In recent years the TSO has performed at City Recital Hall Angel Place in Sydney, Melbourne
Recital Centre and at the Adelaide Festival. International touring has taken the orchestra to North and
South America, Greece, Israel, South Korea, China, Indonesia and Japan.
Resident in Hobart’s purpose-built Federation Concert Hall, the TSO has a full complement of 47 musicians.
Marko Letonja is the orchestra’s Chief Conductor and Artistic Director.
With more than 60 CDs in its catalogue including 20 titles in the Australian Composer Series and 10 in
the Romantic Piano Concerto Series, the TSO is known and heard nationally and internationally. Among
the orchestra’s award-winning recordings are Mozart Arias with Sara Macliver, and Baroque Guitar
Concertos with Slava Grigoryan. TSO concerts are recorded by ABC Classic FM and broadcast and
streamed throughout the world.
Mindful of its mission to be a source of pride for all Tasmanians, the TSO performs a wide variety of
music. Vladimir Ashkenazy, Daniel Barenboim, Alfred Brendel, Lisa Gasteen, Nigel Kennedy, Sara
Macliver, Howard Shelley, Teddy Tahu Rhodes and Richard Tognetti are among the soloists who have
appeared with the orchestra. Popular and jazz artists who have performed with the orchestra include
Rhonda Burchmore, Kate Ceberano, Roberta Flack, Tim Minchin, James Morrison, Anthony Warlow,
Human Nature and The Whitlams.
ABC Classics Robert Patterson, Laura Bell, Natalie Shea, Virginia Read, Andrew Delaney
Original album credits
Executive Producers Robert Patterson & Lyle Chan
Recording Producer Stephen Snelleman
Recording Engineer James Atkins
Assistant Recording Engineer Andrew Dixon
Post Production Stephen Snelleman, James Atkins, Emily Rogers and Virginia Read.
Vocal Coach & Co-Producer Gregory Yurisich
French Language Coach Denise Shepherd
Italian Language Coach Giovanni Mauro
Cover Design Paul Carland
Booklet Design Imagecorp Pty Ltd
Photography Eric Blaich
Recorded June and July 2000 at the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s Odeon Theatre, Hobart and Iwaki
ABC Classics would like to thank Steven Godbee (ABC Enterprises), Emma Beechey (Symphony Australia),
Dean Sky-Lucas, Daylight Studios, Calibre, and the staff of the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra
2000 Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 2012 Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Distributed in Australia and New Zealand by
Universal Music Group, under exclusive licence. Made in Australia. All rights of the owner of copyright reserved. Any copying, renting,
lending, diffusion, public performance or broadcast of this record without the authority of the copyright owner is prohibited.