Tolomeo Re D’Egitto HWV25

Composer: George Frideric Handel
Conductor: Alan Curtis
Orchestra: Il Complesso Barocco
Artists: Ann Hallenberg, Pietro Spagnoli, Karina Gauvin, Anna Bonitatibus
Format: SACD-Hybrid
Recording label: Deutsche Grammophon
Release date: 2008

Anna Bonitatibus’s singing is magnificent “Quell’onda che si frange” is deliciously sung, and her ornamentation and cadenza are fabulous.

David Vickers

Somewhat strangely, Elisa has the most arias. She sings of murmuring waves, flowers and gentle breezes, and had one not read the story beforehand one might have thought what a nice lady she was. One would be wrong. In Scene 5 of Act Two she urges Alessandro to kill Tolomeo by “ripping open his breast”. Bonitatibus has the measure of the role, be it expressing sweetness and light or voicing Elisa’s baser emotions. She experiences no difficulties in Handel’s frequently involved figurations and reveals Elisa as the most varied character.

John T. Hughes