Georg Friedrich Haendel


Georg Friedrich Haendel (1685-1759)

Opéra en trois actes sur un livret de Vincenzo Grimani
Créé le 26 décembre 1709 à Venise (Teatro San Giovanni Grisostomo)


Dortmund / Halle :

Agrippina : Maité Beaumont (Dortmund)
Agrippina : Ann Hallenberg
Poppea : Eugénie Warnier
Nerone : Ève-Maud Hubeaux
Ottone : Paul-Antoine Bénos-Djian
Narciso : Ray Chenez
Claudio : Arnaud Richard
Lesbo : Douglas Williams
Pallante : Étienne Bazola

Bucarest :

Agrippina : Ann Hallenberg
Poppea : Karina Gauvin
Ottone : Christopher Lowrey
Narciso : Kacper Szelążek
Claudio : Ashley Riches
Lesbo : Douglas Williams
Pallante : Étienne Bazola

Les Talens Lyriques

Direction : Christophe Rousset

Agrippina has a very special place in Handel’s work from several standpoints. This, his second opera, was given a series of thirty or so performances at the Venice Carnival in 2009, to an exceptionally positive reception. It was not only the first stage success of the young German, but it was also a piece that, drawing on the works of great masters such as Keiser, Corelli and Lully and his own previous compositions, lays the foundations of his art and inspires all his future compositions.

Handel got on extremely well with Cardinal Grimani, who was something of a librettist and whom he had met during his time in Rome. Grimani provided him with a libretto of great subtlety in which a manipulative Agrippina could be said to be reminiscent of certain vicissitudes of local political and ecclesiastical life at the time. It turned out to be imbued with a strong sense of irony and Handel, far from avoiding this aspect in his score, sets out to highlight its subtle detail. Thus, while it is certainly an opera seria by virtue of its subject, Agrippina could be described as a “heroicomic opera”, moving in the direction of the opera buffa, without daring to go the whole way.

© Les Talens Lyriques