The Critics Loved La Calisto At Wigmore Hall

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Here are a selection of highlights from the reviews:

“The singing was suave, wordy and quick-witted from the goddesses to the sidekicks Mercurio (James Newby) and Silvano (Edward Grint), and Mead’s noble shepherd, while the pathos and comedy in Calisto’s erotic downfall were exquisitely balanced by Crowe. After this and their delectable Acis and Galatea, how long before La Nuova Musica get the theatre run they deserve?”

Anna Picard – The Times ****

“David Bates and La Nuova Musica gave themselves an extra challenge when performing the work at the Wigmore Hall on Monday 28 November 2016, as it was being given in a concert performance, though in fact the group’s lively and imaginative approach to ‘staging’ and keen attention to musicality meant the performance really took wing…..At the centre of everything was Lucy Crowe’s wonderful Calisto, growing from wonder to love to disillusion. Crowe’s highly plangent voice brought great beauty to the arias which Cavalli gives his heroine, yet her demeanour and performance gave the music great intensity too. This was a highly concentrated performance, the still centre of a web of chaos [Read more…]

Hottest Ticket In Town – The Critics Loved Orontea

Here are the reviews for our Wigmore Hall performance of Cesti’s Orontea on December 14th:

David_Bates_Wigmore_credit_NickRutter.co.uk_squareCharm and invention brought buoyantly to life ****

Rupert Christiansen – The Telegraph

This was a highly enjoyable concert performance of Cesti’s baroque opera

A few weeks ago at Shakespeare’s Globe, I felt I had been locked into some terminal limbo of tedium. Clever men describe Luigi Rossi’s Orfeo as a “masterpiece” of the Italian baroque, written during the 1640s, but it seemed to ignorant me nothing more than a stock romance with some irritating comic characters, clothed in insipid and monochrome music.

Everyone else loved it, however – so I thought, well, perhaps the idiom is just not my cup of musical tea. But here at the Wigmore Hall was another opera of the same school, composed contemporaneously within the same framework, which I found much more palatable……..

……..Anna Stéphany and Jonathan McGovern sang lustrously and stylishly as Orontea and Alidoro, their regal intensity contrasting with the lighter brighter tone of Mary Bevan and Michal Czerniawski representing the lower social orders. [Read more…]

Praise for Our Bejun Mehta Recital At The Wigmore Hall

Bejun Mehta Rehearsal credit Nick Rutter

Photo by Nick Rutter

LNM joined forces with American Counter Tenor Bejun Mehta for a memorable concert at the Wigmore Hall on Monday. The Critics not only admired Bejun’s assured singing but also praised the playing of our instrumental soloists:

“At the same time, Mehta’s piping pirouettes, dulcet in the pianissimo mode but with a metal edge when the volume is increased, faced stiff competition in beauty and fire from his accompanying musicians, David Bates’ La Nuova Musica.
For all Mehta’s art during Alessandro Scarlatti’s Perchè tacete, especially in it’s lullaby aria, it was the instrumental spectacle that grabbed me. Two violins chased each other’s tails; harmonies lived dangerously. Everyone too, here and throughout, played with such rich tone and gusto. Listening to Biber’s third suite from his collection Mensa Sonora was like eating Christmas Pudding.”

Geoff Brown *** The Times

“The Italian solo cantata, and the ways in which it was taken up and adapted in Germany and Britain in the late 17th and early 18th centuries, provided the substance of countertenor Bejun Mehta’s recital with the ensemble La Nuova Musica. But despite its apparently didactic theme, the evening never threatened to become a dry lesson in baroque musicology; Mehta is far too relaxed and compelling a performer ever to seem remotely academic……..it was a wonderfully democratic evening of music making on the highest level……read more

Andrew Clements – The Guardian

Join us again at the Wigmore Hall to experience Cesti’s L’Orontea with a stellar cast including Anna Stéphany, Mary Bevan and Jonathan McGovern. Click here to book tickets