Unrequited love

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A Scarlatti: Cinta dei più bei fiori
Forces: soprano & continuo

"Surrounded by so many beautiful flowers" and so much beautiful music. This is a substantial pastoral cantata (with an appearance by the faithless Clori) in RARARA format. Sinuous recitative and stunning arias!

Range: e - g'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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A Scarlatti: Della spietata Irene
Forces: soprano & continuo

Why do these men keep coming back for more? This perfidious Irene can kill with a glance, has Cupid on her side and just doesn't care! One of Scarlatti's more chromatic offerings in RARA format, both arias full of peno.

Range d - f'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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A Scarlatti: Dove fuggi, ò bella Clori?
Forces: soprano, alto, violins & continuo

A virtuoso duet cantata for soprano and alto with strings, a mini-opera with wit, pathos, and brilliance. Lidio is in hot pursuit of Clori - but she scorns love and all his protestations, until in the final duet they join in praise of the joys and pains of love. Published by kind permission of the Diözesan-Bibliothek, Münster.

Range Clori: d'-g''
Range Lidio: b-c''

Editor: Rosalind Halton

Cantata à due, soprano e contralto con violini
£7.95
A Scarlatti: La dove a Mergellina
Forces: Soprano & continuo

There at Mergellina where the sea kisses the shore, the lovelorn Elpino went alone one day, addressing the waves: "Love him that loves you..." A stunning example of the genre in a long-awaited edition from Rosalind Halton and a must have for the lovers of cantate de camera. In RARA format and taken from two sources, Naples and London.

Editor: Rosalind Halton

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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A Scarlatti: Mentre Clori la bella sotto l'ombra d'un mirto
Forces: soprano, 2 flutes & continuo

Clori is being very insensitive, sitting beneath her Myrtle tree and enjoying the breeze whilst Fileno is suffering all the torments of love! In RARARA format with two of the arias with 2 flutes accompaniment and 2 with ritornelli. A lovely piece with some very interesting use of harmony...

Source: Münster Santini Sammlung Hs 3975(2)

Range: d - a''

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano con flauti
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A Scarlatti: Mesto lasso, e ramingo
Forces: soprano & continuo

Dated on the first page as June of 1704. Submerged in sadness and sorrow, our protagonist pleads with Fate for release. In regular RARA format with a quirky 3/4 first aria and a lovely, pleading Siciliano to finish.

Source: Source: Münster Santini Sammlung Hs 3907(2)

Range: d - g'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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A Scarlatti: Mi tormenta il pensiero (i)
Forces: soprano & continuo

The first version of this cantata, dated 10 March 1701 in Scarlatti's 'Cantata Diary'. 'Tormented by my thoughts, consumed with desire, lost is hope, and without hope what point is there in life?' The torments of Jealousy in love. RARA format.

Source: Münster Santini Sammlung HS 864(7)

Range: d - g'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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A Scarlatti: Nel silentio commune di notte si tranquilla
Forces: soprano, 2 violins, viola & basso continuo

A great work based on the Petrarchan theme of the lover who sighs alone while nature sleeps. Beginning with a hushed recitative accompagnato, the cantata has a total of 4 recitatives and arias, portraying the lover's brightly-coloured dream of love returned. A handwritten version of this edition was premiered memorably in the 1980s by tenor Nigel Rogers for the BBC, with the Taverner Players

Range: d'-a''

Source: British Library, London

Editor: Rosalind Halton

Cantata à voce sola con stromenti d’arco
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A Scarlatti: Nò non ti voglio Cupido
Forces: soprano, alto & continuo

The changeable attitude to love certainly makes for a bright piece of music! The opening and closing duets (to the same music) projects two different moods - 'No I don't want it' and 'Yes, I do' Separated by two recits and arias, one for each voice.

Source: Münster Santini Sammlung HS 865(1)

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à due, soprano e contralto
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A Scarlatti: Notte cara a un cor che langue
Forces: soprano & continuo

(1705) Hanley 478. Three arias, two recits. Sources in British Library and Santini Collection, Münster.

Theme of night and the solitary lover; rewarding cello part, especially the virtuoso Aria 2.

Vocal range: d'-g''.

Editor: Rosalind Halton

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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A Scarlatti: Notte cara, ombre beate
Forces: soprano & continuo

'Dear night, blessed shadows...I only enjoy my dreams and cry in the day...' Very much a nocturnal lover in one of Scarlatti's stunning night cantatas. Beautiful harmonies, sinuous dreaming vocal lines capturing that special air of quiet and suspense. In ARARA format and compiled from two copies in the Naples Conservatorio Library.

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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A Scarlatti: Ombre tacite, e sole
Forces: mezzo-soprano, strings & continuo

Source: British Library Zweig 76

This is an autograph work dated October 31. 1716.

In four sections, recit-aria-recit-aria with both recits accompanied. It has two exquisite arias, the last a particularly fine Siciliano. The text deals with unrequited, requited and then spurned love and has it's high point in the last aria: 'Why cruel one do you leave me? Why spurn me? Why betray me? Why search out a new love? Why leave me?'

Range: c' - e'' flat

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola con stromenti d'arco
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A Scarlatti: Questa, questa è la selva
Forces: soprano & continuo

A wonderful pastoral setting 'This is the forest...' but once again Nice is not being nice and is abandoning her lover. His cries and plaints, his promises of eternal love are all for naught as he is deserted... This is a really complex work with huge recitatives, RARA format.

From 5 sources in the Biblioteca del Conservatorio di musica S. Pietro a Majella - Napoli: Cantate 255 (26), 256 (7), 267 (6), 266 (62). There is also a copy in 264 (20) which pitches the recitatives a tone higher and the second aria in a minor rather than d minor.

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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A Scarlatti: Solitudini care
Forces: soprano & continuo

Sources: BL Add MSS 14213 & 31509

Tirsi seems to be unhappy sotto l'ombra again, calling for his beloved Climene in this extraordinarily chromatic cantata Dall'occulto A.S.. In double recit-aria format with frequent tempo changes in the last aria.

Range: c - f#'

Editor: Kate Eckersley & James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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A Scarlatti: Tu resti o mio bel nume
Forces: bass, violins & continuo

The subject is of lovers parting. The debate is about who suffers most - the one who has to leave, or the one left behind. A fine accompagnato recitative introduces the cantata, which is more lyrical than virtuoso. Aria 1 is an elegant siciliano on the theme of two souls as ship and harbour. Aria 2 returns to the musical idea of the opening accompagnato: departure is equated with death, but made sweetened by constancy. Here the violin figurations are ornate, the harmonies intense, and the singer is invited to display a range of an octave and a 5th in the space of 2 quavers. RARA (2 arias are for unison violins)

Vocal range: G#-d'

Source: Biblioteca del Conservatorio, Naples.

Editor: Rosalind Halton

Cantata à voce sola di basso con violini
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Astorga: Cangia loco, e cangia sorte
Forces: soprano & continuo

In the mistaken belief that removing himself from the presence of his love will make him feel better, our young shepherd learns a hard lesson about the power of love. In ARA format, both arias in the 'pathetic' style and the second making one wonder whether Handel had heard it...?

Source: Münster Santini Sammlung HS 859(2)

Range: d# - g'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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Astorga: Cara Lidia adorata
Forces: soprano & continuo

Using the old 'ship into harbour' story our young man tries to woo Lidia, but she's having none of it! "...Too cruel, too unfaithful..." he cries, but to what avail? In RARA format with two very 'spiky' arias, lots of chromatic twists in both arias and recitatives.

Source: Müs Santini Sammlung HS859(14)

Range: c - g'

Editor: James Sanderson
Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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Astorga: Ecco perfida Irene
Forces: soprano & continuo

This is taking the sacrifice for love just a little too far. Despite Irene's nastiness, her coldness, her viciousness her lover still wants to just die for her. Oh, please! In RARA format with a strikingly strong first aria in cut common time and a wonderful sinuous final largo.

Source: Münster Santini Sammlung HS 859(15)

Range: d - g'

Editor: James Sanderson
Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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Bigaglia: Ecco perfida Irene
Forces: soprano & continuo

This is taking the sacrifice for love just a little too far... Despite Irene's nastiness, her coldness, her viciousness her lover still wants to die just for her. RARA format with a stunning first aria and challenging last, this is one of the Venetian priest's excellent miniatures. Source: Naples

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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Bigaglia: Se tu resisti ò cor
Forces: soprano & continuo

Source BL Add 14212 f75 - 81v

The figures are in a different hand to the manuscript copy (perhaps a later performer?). An attractive work with a very interesting 'left-footed' Siciliano to end.

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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Bononcini: 3 alto cantate con violini
Forces: alto, violins & continuo

The three alto cantate con violini from the 1721 edition 'Cantate e Duetti dedicati alla Sacra Maestà di Giorgio Rè della Gran Bretagna'

Care luci del mio bene
Misero pastorello
Siedi Amarilli mia

See individual titles for details

Editor: James Sanderson

3 cantate à voce sola di contralto con violini
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Bononcini: Alle sue pene intorno
Forces: soprano, violins & continuo

As they say, 'Hell hath no fury as a woman scorned...' Filli has been rejected by her lover and although she at first threatens all manner of pain to Cupid, she then calls for the furies to bring her poison to end her suffering. In RARA format, the first aria a witty Minuet, the second a two-tempo allegro then largo. Single Unisoni violin part.

Source: BL Add 31518 13r - 16r

Range: d - a flat'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano con violini
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Bononcini: Anche i tronchi
Forces: soprano & continuo

'Even the trees and rocks know of my suffering - only you ignore it'. The demanding cello part especially in aria 2 reflects the virtuosity of the composer Bononcini (presumably Giovanni). A-R-A-R-A

Sources: MÜs 3903 & BL Add MS 31547

Range: d'-g''

Editor: Rosalind Halton

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
Out of Stock
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Bononcini: Anche i tronchi
Forces: alto & continuo

'Even the trees and rocks know of my suffering - only you ignore it'. The demanding cello part especially in aria 2 reflects the virtuosity of the composer Bononcini (presumably Giovanni). A-R-A-R-A

Sources: MÜs 3903 & BL Add MS 31547

Alto: g-c''

Editor: Rosalind Halton
Cantata à voce sola di contralto
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Bononcini: Care luci del mio bene
Forces: alto, violins & continuo

"Dear eyes of my beloved, you would be more beautiful still if you had some pity for me..." Nice is not being nice (again), nevertheless her erstwhile suitor remains faithful and hopes for her pity on his plight. ARA format with some stylish writing for both voice and violins.

Source: 1721 edition in the British Library

Range: a - e'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di contralto con violini
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Bononcini: Clori, mi sento al core
Forces: soprano & continuo

A story about the close relationship between pain and pleasure in love. Clori is the inspiration again! In RARARARA format - yes it's a long one... Lovely text, varied arias, expressive recitatives.

Source: BL Add MS 31547 f47r - 53r

Range: e - g'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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Bononcini: Clori, mio ben mia vita
Forces: soprano & continuo

Clori had quite a hold over her men! Here our erstwhile suitor complains of the joy she takes in causing him pain and suffering. RARA format, the first recit being particularly expressive. Both arias in triple time with slightly off-beat word setting.

Source: BL Add MS 31545

Range: d# - b flat'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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Bononcini: Da te che pasci ogn'ora
Forces: soprano & continuo

Here our protagonist is literally wanting to die for love. Once more a rejected suit leads him to suffer so! In RARA format with a sinuous first aria Affettuoso, e cantabile and an excellent vivace to finish.

Source: British Library copy of the 1721 edition

Range: e - a''

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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Bononcini: Dall'incurvato ferro
Forces: soprano & continuo

The cruelty and spite of the gods to our young protagonist is the theme, leaving him in the position of offering his life for one day of happiness with his beloved. Excellent recitatives and some very enjoyable arias (RARARA format)

Source: Münster HS 3915(19)

Range: e - g'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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Bononcini: Lidio, schernito amante
Forces: soprano & continuo

The agony of love unrequited returns in the text of this work. The 'delirium of Love', the 'agony of the heart'. Excellent and virtuosic recitatives link three delightful arias covering a two octave range.

Source: Münster Santini Sammlung HS 3915(12)

Range: b - b''

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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Bononcini: Peno, peno e l'alma fedele
Forces: soprano & continuo

Arcadia is in turmoil and Tirsi is really suffering with a wicked, lying beloved here. '...to hope for fidelity is torment...' A large piece with 3 recits and 3 arias finishing with a delightful minuet.

Source: BL Add MS 31546 22v

Range: c# - g'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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Bononcini: Quanto peno e quanto piango
Forces: soprano & continuo

Source: BL Add MS 14211 52r

Short aria - recit - aria format but absolutely delightful! What we go through for love. Despite being cruel, unkind, like a serpent, still he loves her and yearns for her - such pain, such tears! This would be an excellent piece for a difficult spot in a program - total duration is only around 4 or 5 minutes

Range: f - g'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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Bononcini: Siedi Amarilli mia
Forces: alto, violins & continuo

A large cantata for alto with a complicated structure. The story deals with the pain of love and includes a dialogue between the lovers Amarilli and Fileno (though sung by the same voice). The first aria sighs, alternating with recitative, the second is sobbing and the third is sprightly. Two-part opening prelude.

Source: British Library copy of 1721 edition

Range: a - e flat'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di contralto e violini
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Bononcini: Son io barbara donna
Forces: alto & continuo

Source: BL Add MS 14213 ff 103v - 110r

Bononcini's setting of a very popular cantata text. A boy unhappy with his Clori again. She is a minx! Two very different arias with a lovely sobbing line in the first sospira à miei sospiri and a matter-of-fact final andante - pensa ch'un nouvo amante non ti sarà costante!

Range: c - d'

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di contralto
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Bononcini: Usignuol che col mio pianto
Forces: alto & continuo

Here our lover tells the nightingale to be silent and simply moan at the sadness he feels. Beautiful music with a depressing subject. Dorinda, it seems, is playing hard to get and our protagonist is lamenting the fact. Very much an alto cantata (going down to a bottom G) this is a fine example of the simpler ARA format with some delightful word-painting in both arias and recitative.

Source: Naples Conservatorio.

Editor: James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di contralto
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D Scarlatti: Di fille vendicarmi vorrei
Forces: soprano & continuo

Source: MS in the collection of the Royal College of Music, London

Aria - recit - aria format, the first remarkable for its chromaticism, the last for its sheer verve and virtuosity. The text deals with a young man whose love for Fille has caused him 'fierce grief' and leads him to pray to the God of Love for assistance.

Range: a - a''

Editor: Kate Eckersley & James Sanderson

Cantata à voce sola di soprano
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