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Cecilia Bartoli: Sacrificium - The Music of the Castrati [DVD] [English] [2009]

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Cecilia Bartoli: Sacrificium - The Music of the Castrati
Predominantly active in the mid-late 16th Century, and regarded as members of the Neapolitan school of voice, the castrati were young men either castrated during their prepubescent years, or born hermaphroditic. Regardless of the origin of their unusual physiologies, the absence of male anatomy enabled them to sing at remarkably high ranges, with tremendous lung capacity, and a whole set of arias were composed exclusively for them, tailored to their unique vocal abilities. The classical concert release Cecilia Bartoli: Sacrificium - The Music of the Castrati finds mezzo-soprano Cecilia Bartoli interpreting a series of castrato arias, filmed at various locations on the grounds of the Palace of Caserta in Southern Italy, by director Olivier Simonnet - who imposes his own unique vision onto the material. The composers on display include Nicola Porpora (Come nave in mezzo all'onde), Geminiano Giacomelli (Sposa, non mi conosci), $Francesco Araia Cadrò (Ma qual si mira), Riccardo Broschi (Son qual nave) and Georg Friedrich Handel (Ombra mai fu). Agostino Cavalca designed the costumes. ~ Nathan Southern, Rovi

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