Porpora, Nicola Antonio

Born Naples 17th August, 1686

Died Naples 3rd March, 1768

A celebrated composer and singing teacher, Porpora's ability to set the Italian language to music was internationally acknowledged during his lifetime.

"…Porpora's Cantatas particularly the Recitatives, are still regarded in Italy as models of perfection for narrative Music… The Cantatas of Nicolo (sic) Porpora have been always much esteemed, on account of the excellence of their Recitatives, and the good taste and truly vocal style of the airs…"

He numbered among his students Metastasio, Farinelli, Caffarelli, Antonio Uberti (known as "Porporino"), Regina Mingotti and the composer Franz Joseph Haydn.

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Aria for Farinelli from Polifemo
£4.95
Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Duetto à soprano e basso con violini
£6.95
Collection of 6 cantatas for soprano
£17.95
Collection of 6 cantatas for contralto
£17.95
Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Aria from Flavio Anicio Olibrio
£3.95
Cieco Dio fors'io quel fiore Forces: soprano & continuo Blind Cupid is causing grief again for our young lover and inspires this paean. A 'classic' aria (Amoroso) - recit - aria (Allegro) format with some fascinating chromatic twists and turns. Source: Münster Santini Hs 3313 (Nr. 14) Range: e - f#' Editor: James Sanderson
£4.95
Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Cantata à voce sola di mezzo-soprano
£4.95
A setting of psalm 115(116)
£12.95
Cantata à voce solo con violini
£5.95
Cantata à voce sola di contralto
£4.95
Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Cantata à voce sola di contralto
£4.95
Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Cantata à voce sola di contralto
£4.95
Setting of Psalm 129/130
£12.95
Cantata à voce sola di contralto
£4.95
Cantata à voce sola di contralto con stromenti
£5.95
Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Cantata à voce sola con violini
£5.95
Cantata à voce sola di contralto
£4.95
Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Cantata à voce sola di contralto
£4.95
Porpora: Abbandonata e sola
Forces: alto & continuo

Here Porpora is at the height both of his recitative and 'pathetic' writing with a stunning first aria, but also maintains the fieriness of his allegro writing in the last aria.

This pastoral cantata is all about 'separation angst' and the suffering when abandoned by one's love - in this case Fileno (again).

Source: Münster Santini Hs 3313 (Nr. 17)

Range: c - d'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata da camera
£4.95
Porpora: Alla caccia dell'alme
Forces: alto & continuo

A hunting cantata, as virtuosic as the Vivaldi version and with even better recitatives! ARA format, here Clori is the huntress who ensnares men with her charms, too late our lover discovers he is already caught, but he is "...not the first and not alone."

Range: a - e

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata da camera
£4.95
Porpora: Alto Giove
Forces: soprano, strings & continuo

The aria made famous through the film 'Farinelli: il castrato' Beautiful and virtuosic, it concerns Acis thanking Jove for making him immortal.

In two sections, the beautiful lento with it's slowly moving harmony and sinuous vocal line, and an unexpected andantino middle section.

Range: d - g''

Editor: James Sanderson

Aria for Farinelli from Polifemo
£4.95
Porpora: Amor crudele Amore
Forces: soprano & continuo

Source: BL Add 14,215 ff 68r - 71v

Recit - aria - recit - aria form with two beautifully contrasting arias. The shepherd rails against Amor and prays for the love of his shepherdess.

Range: d - g'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Porpora: Calcante ed Achille
Forces: soprano, bass, violins, viola & continuo

A substantial chamber duet with a sinfonia, an aria for each character and a final duet. This is beautiful writing with many variations on the aria format, middle sections with different tempi and Afekt. It is the seer Calcas pronouncing the sacrifice of Iphegenia that set off the argument between Agamemnon and Achilles (Iliad).

Editor: James Sanderson

Duetto à soprano e basso con violini
£6.95
Porpora: Cantatas Op. 1 (pt. 1 - soprano)

Forces: soprano & continuo

The first six of the cantatas dedicated to the Prince of Wales in 1735

All to texts by Metastasio, they are virtuosic, filled with beautifully written recitatives and arias, perhaps the high-point of Porpora's work in this genre.

D'amore il primo dardo
Nel mio sonno almen
Tirsi chiamare a Nome
Queste che miri o Nice
Scrivo in te l'amato nome (Il nome)
Già la notte s'avvicina

See the individual titles for previews

Editor: James Sanderson
Collection of 6 cantatas for soprano
£17.95
Porpora: Cantatas Op. 1 (pt. 2 - alto)
Forces: alto & continuo

The second six of the cantatas dedicated to the Prince of Wales in 1735

All to texts by Metastasio, they are virtuosic, filled with beautifully written recitatives and arias, perhaps the high-point of Porpora's work in this genre.

Veggo la Selva e il monte
Or che una nube ingrata
Destatevi, destatevi ò pastori
Oh se fosse il mio core
Oh Dio che non è vero
Dal povero mio cor

See the individual titles for previews.

Editor: James Sanderson
Collection of 6 cantatas for contralto
£17.95
Porpora: Celinda, Oh Dio Celinda
Forces: soprano & continuo

Celinda has gone missing, and her lover sings of her beauty, his searching and his hope of her return. Great recits, a beautiful Siciliano and a virtuosic allegro to finish.

Source: Münster Santini HS 3313(1)

Range: d - f#'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Porpora: Chiara dea
Forces: alto, strings & continuo

Act I scene i of Porpora's 1711 opera Flavio Anicio Olibrio provides us with another obbligato cello aria (who was the cellist?)

Editor: James Sanderson

Aria from Flavio Anicio Olibrio
£3.95
Porpora: Cieco Dio fors'io quel fiore
Forces: soprano & continuo

Blind Cupid is causing grief again for our young lover and inspires this paean. A 'classic' aria (Amoroso) - recit - aria (Allegro) format with some fascinating chromatic twists and turns.

Source: Münster Santini Hs 3313 (Nr. 14)

Range: e - f#'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cieco Dio fors'io quel fiore Forces: soprano & continuo Blind Cupid is causing grief again for our young lover and inspires this paean. A 'classic' aria (Amoroso) - recit - aria (Allegro) format with some fascinating chromatic twists and turns. Source: Münster Santini Hs 3313 (Nr. 14) Range: e - f#' Editor: James Sanderson
£4.95
Porpora: Cinto il cor d'aspre catene
Forces: soprano & continuo

'The Joys of Love are greater than any freedom' must be the moral of this pastoral cantata. Trapped in the chains of love, the young man still longs for his Fille, not for freedom! In simple ARA format with a very beautiful pair of arias.

Source: Münster Santini HS 3313 (Nr. 19)

Range: d - a''

Editor: James Sanderson
Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Porpora: Clari Splendete
Forces: soprano, strings & continuo

Source BL Add. 14125

Written in March 1744 for the Ospedaletto. Virtuosic solo motet.

Editor: James Sanderson

Solo motet
£6.95
Porpora: Clori, vezzosa Clori
Forces: soprano & continuo

Separation angst is the theme again in this pastoral cantata. Apart from Clori, her lover bewails his fate through woods, mountains and streams (they always seem to walk so far!). RARA format, the first aria full of wonderful suspensions and a slowly agitated bass line, the second with more agitation in 12/8

Source: Münster Santini HS 3313(3)

Range: e flat - g'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Porpora: Col tuo dolce mormorio
Forces: soprano & continuo

Early cantata in aria-recit-aria format. Recit has very adventurous harmonic progressions and first aria is very beautiful Lento, last is virtuosic

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Porpora: Concerto per Violoncello (G)
Forces: violoncello solo, strings & continuo

Porpora's G Major cello concerto from a contemporary copy in BL MS Add 14125. This performing edition comes complete with parts for orchestra and soloist. The MIDI preview is of the second movement - Allegro. There are four movements in total (Adagio (C) - Allegro (C) - Adagio (3/4) - Allegro (6/8)). The concerto is highly virtuosic and the solo writing well suited to the instrument.

Editor: James Sanderson

Cello concerto in G
£9.95
Porpora: Cora amante di perchè
Forces: mezzo-soprano & continuo

One of three aria-recit-aria cantatas in BL MS Add 29484, simple but very attractive. Subject: Cora's unwillingness to love

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di mezzo-soprano
£4.95
Porpora: Credidi propter
Forces: SSAA coro, strings & continuo

Source: BL MS Add. 14127 ff 29r - 38r (autograph)

A setting of psalm 115(116) Credidi propter quod locutus sum ego divided into 3 sections: Psalm - Gloria - Sicut erat & amen.

Written in 1745 for the Ospedaletto, it appears to have been reworked at a later date for SSAB coro, a format more characteristic of earlier works for the Pietà. This version follows the original SSAA coro version in all respects.

Editor: James Sanderson

A setting of psalm 115(116)
£12.95
Porpora: Credimi pur che t'amo
Forces: soprano, strings & continuo

Written in July of 1712 this edition uses the autograph source in the British Library. Scored for two violins, soprano and continuo and dealing with the vagaries of love this is definitely an early work, very similar in style to parts of Flavio Anicio Olibrio and reflecting an older style of cantata. It starts with a three part sinfonia, followed by two recitative and aria pairs (the last a particularly beautiful Siciliano).

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce solo con violini
£5.95
Porpora: D'Amor la bella pace
Forces: alto & continuo

Source BL Add 14122

Virtuosic cantata for alto and continuo - the last aria is particularly fiendish. Better known as a soprano cantata, this contemporary copy demonstrates the habit of transposing for different voices.

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di contralto
£4.95
Porpora: D'amore il primo dardo
Forces: soprano & continuo

Cantata Op 1, no. 1

Text by Metastasio, concerning the power of Amore to pierce the heart with the very first dart. Affettuoso - recit - Allegro (both arias with 'Si sona' ritornelli)

Range: f' - g''

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Porpora: Dal povero mio cor
Forces: alto & continuo

Cantata Op. 1, no. 12

This is extremely virtuosic and a fitting end to the collection. 2 recit/aria format with an extremely interesting second recit (quasi accompagnato) and final aria

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di contralto
£4.95
Porpora: Dalle regia di Flora
Forces: soprano & continuo

Source: BL Add MS 14210

A delightful testament to the beauty of Flora, both physical and 'spiritually'. Comparisons to flowers, the fields, the dawn and, for once, nothing bitter! 2 recits and arias, with the final aria in the classic Porpora virtuosic style.

Range: d - f''

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Porpora: Datti pace se puoi
Forces: alto & continuo

Source: alto version in BL Add MS 14210 ff 120r - 127r

The unhappy shepherd is once again longing for his distant love. He cannot believe that she could be untrue. Ah... 2 recits and 2 arias format.

Range: b - e'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di contralto
£4.95
Porpora: De profundis
Forces: soprano & alto solo, SSAA coro, strings & continuo

Source: BL MS Add. 14128 ff 83r - 105r

A substantial setting of the De Profundis in 9 movements, 4 choral (SSAA), 4 solo and one duet, written in 1744 for the Ospedaletto. The soloists are entered in the score as: Bernadetta, Elisabetta Pia, Lauretta (soprani), with Angioletta Moro and Barbara (contralti). As is common in these liturgical settings, Porpora features favoured/most talented students first, the first soprano and alto arias being the most virtuosic.

Editor: James Sanderson

Setting of Psalm 129/130
£12.95
Porpora: Deh, lasciatemi in pace
Forces: alto & continuo

Source BL Add 14215

Virtuosic cantata for alto and continuo in three recitatives and arias

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di contralto
£4.95
Porpora: Destatevi, destatevi o pastori
Forces: alto, obbligato instrument & continuo

Cantata Op. 1, no. 9

An extremely operatic cantata, 'Destatevi' has an obbligato part which alternates between written ritornelli, accompagnato recits, the simple designation accompagnato and arpeggiato bass indications. It could be played on a single line instrument such as flute/violin or on the keyboard. Subject: the power of Love over shepherds and hunters.

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di contralto con stromenti
£5.95
Porpora: Di vaga fera le bell'orme
Forces: soprano & continuoA substantial work in RARA form

The first recit becomes an arioso, the arias are both beautiful and virtuosic, the recitatives live up to expectation of painting a vivid picture of the story: this time of the bonds of love. "Were I to leave Clori I would become incapable of loving again..."

Source: Münster Santini HS 3313

Range: c# - a''

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Porpora: Dice che m'ami
Forces: soprano & continuo

Source: BL Add 14214 ff 78v - 85v (only source)

In aria-recit-aria form, both arias without tempo indication, but probably a tempo giusto and lento or affettuoso. As usual, the recitative is beautifully crafted, accurately reflecting the rhythm of the language. The text concerns love as an allegory of the life of a sailor on rough seas.

Range: d - a'' flat

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Porpora: Dolce canto l'Augellino
Forces: soprano & continuo

They never learn not to trust Cupid! Using the metaphor of a bird losing its freedom through falling in love with a beautiful face, the poet weaves an enchanting cantata text which Porpora sets using the ARA format. Both arias in minor keys but clearly portraying the bird in figurations reminiscent of bird call.

Source: Münster Santini 3313 (6)

Range: d - a''

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Porpora: Domine probasti me (Psalm 138/9)
Forces: SSAA coro, strings & continuo

Source: Autograph in BL Add MS 14216

Writen in October of 1745 for the girls of the Ospedaletto this is a continuous setting, i.e. not divided into separate sections other than for the short, fiery Gloria Patri. Similar in style to the other Psalm settings (Credidi Propter, In Exitu Israel, Qui habitat in adjutorium etc.)

Duration would be around 8 minutes and is perfect for a difficult programming spot!

Editor: James Sanderson

Choral psalm setting
£7.95
Porpora: Ecco che il primo albore
Forces: alto, violins & continuo

From BL Add 14222

Prelude - recit - aria - recit - aria structure with great contrast in mood and style. Written in the period 1712 - 1715

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola con violini
£5.95
Porpora: Ecco l'infausto lido
Forces: alto & continuo

Source BL Add 14122

Virtuosic cantata for alto and continuo in two recitatives and arias

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di contralto
£4.95
Porpora: Farfalletta semplicetta
Forces: soprano & continuo

Like a butterfly attracted to the light, the lover is attracted to another and burns his wings. Looking to Cupid for help brings no rescue! A beautiful cantata in ARA form.

Sources: GB-Lbl Add MS 14215 ff 13r - 16v & D MÜs: SANT Hs 3313 (Nr. 4)

Range: d - g'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
£4.95
Porpora: Farinelli arias from Gli orti Esperidi
Forces: soprano, strings & continuo

The four arias written for Farinelli in one of his first appearances. Here he sings the rôle of Adone. See the individual arias for MIDI preview - buy all four and save £££!

Includes: Se il morir, fosse mia pena;
Sarebbe nell'amar soave il sospirar;
Giusto Amor; and Se son lontano dal mio diletto

Editor: James Sanderson

Arias
Out of Stock
£12.95
Porpora: Farinelli arias from Polifemo
Forces: soprano solo with various orchestral accompaniments

Five of the amazing arias written for Farinelli in Porpora's 'Polifemo'

See the individual arias for previews:
Oh' volesser gli Dei/Dolci fresche aurette
Lontan dal solo e caro/Lusingato dalla speme agitato
Nell' attendere il mio bene
Alto Giove
Che dici or tu ch'ai poter che Giove?/Senti il fato

All in orchestral score.

Editor: James Sanderson

Arias
Out of Stock
£16.95
Porpora: Fille se fiera sorte
Forces: alto & continuo

Here the lover expresses the feelings that separation from Fille would bring; the slow footstep, the longing, the yearning. It's a lovely sing too! RARA format with well-balanced andante then allegro arias.

Source: Münster Santini HS 859 (9)

Range: c - d'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di contralto
£4.95
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