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Prom 65: Alice Coote sings Handel

Live from the Royal Albert Hall in London, Martin Handley presents a Prom in which mezzo-soprano Alice Coote and the English Concert under Harry Bicket perform Handel arias.

Live at the BBC Proms: Alice Coote and The English Concert with Harry Bicket in a programme of Handel arias.

Live from the Royal Albert Hall, London
Presented by Martin Handley

Handel - Arias from operas, oratorios and cantatas

Alice Coote (mezzo-soprano)
The English Concert
Harry Bicket (conductor)
Susannah Waters (stage director)

A programme of arias from Handel's operas, oratorios and cantatas - including Giulio Cesare, Semele, Hercules, Theodora, Messiah and Tra le fiamme - as a window on 'being both': the dilemmas and turbulent emotions experienced by both male and female characters
Few composers express emotion as directly or with greater psychological truth than Handel. British mezzo-soprano Alice Coote explores the full gamut of these emotions in a Late Night Prom featuring some of Handel's greatest arias. Taking on both male and female roles, she delves into what it means to be a man, or a woman, in Handel's world of sorceresses and knights, kings and queens. She is joined in her theatrical journey by regular collaborators and period-performance specialists Harry Bicket and The English Concert.

This Prom will be repeated on Wednesday 9th September at 2pm.

1 hour, 30 minutes

Music Played

  • George Frideric Handel

    Alcina-Sta nell`Ircana

    Orchestra: The English Concert. Conductor: Harry Bicket.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Hercules - Resign thy club

    Orchestra: The English Concert. Conductor: Harry Bicket.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Ariodante - Scherza Infida

    Orchestra: The English Concert. Conductor: Harry Bicket.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Theodora - O that I on wings could rise

    Performer: Alice Coote. Orchestra: The English Concert.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Ariodante - Ballet Music

    Orchestra: The English Concert.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Messiah - He Was Despised

    Orchestra: The English Concert. Conductor: Harry Bicket.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Semele - Myself I shall adore

    Orchestra: The English Concert. Conductor: Harry Bicket.
  • Paul Horn

    Meditation Psalm 2

    • Inside the Great Pyramid.
    • Kuckuck.
    • 2.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Julius Caesar - Se pieta

    Orchestra: The English Concert. Conductor: Harry Bicket.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Ariodante - Dope Notte

    Orchestra: The English Concert. Conductor: Harry Bicket.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Hercules - There in Myrtle Shades

    Orchestra: The English Concert. Conductor: Harry Bicket.
  • Stephen Vitiello & Taylor Deupree

    The Fish House [extract]

    • Captiva.
    • 12k.
    • 1.
  • Paul Horn

    Meditation Psalm 2

    • Inside the Great Pyramid.
    • Kuckuck.
    • 2.
  • Ryley Walker

    Fonda

    • all kinds of you.
    • Tompkins Square.
    • 7.
  • Stephen Vitiello & Taylor Deupree

    The Fish House [extract]

    • Captiva.
    • 12k.
    • 1.

Handel - Alcina

Sta nell'ircana (Ruggiero)

 

Sta nell’Ircana pietrosa tana

Tigre sdegnosa, e incerta pende,

Se parte, o attende

Il cacciator.

Dal teso strale

Guardarsi vuole;

Ma poi la prole

Lascia in periglio.

Freme e l’assale

Desio di sangue,

Pietà del figlio;

Poi vince amor.

Dal teso strale, etc.

Anonymous, based on ‘Orlando furioso’

by Ludovico Ariosto (1474–1533)

 

In her rocky Hyrcanian den

an angry tigress lurks, uncertain

whether to flee or wait

for the hunter.

From the ready-strung arrow

she would protect herself,

but doing so would leave

her cub in danger.

She quivers, assailed

by thirst for blood

and fear for the cub;

love wins.

From the ready-strung arrow, etc.

Translation © Avril Bardoni

 

Handel - Hercules

Resign thy club (Dejanira)

 

Resign thy club and lion’s spoils,

And fly from war to female toils!

For the glittering sword and shield

The spindle and the distaff wield!

Thund’ring Mars no more shall arm thee,

Venus and her whining boy

Shall all thy wanton hours employ.

Resign thy club and lion’s spoils, etc.

Thomas Broughton (1704–74),

after Sophocles (496–406 bce)

Handel - Ariodante

Scherza Infida (Ariodante)

 

E vivo ancora? E senza il ferro?

Oh! Dei! Che farò?

Che mi dite? O affanni miei!

Scherza infida! In grembo al drudo,

Io tradito a morte in braccio

Per tua colpa ora men vo.

Ma a spezzar l’indegno laccio,

Ombra mesta, e spirto ignudo,

Per tua pena io tornerò.

Scherza infida! In grembo al drudo, etc.

after Antonio Salvi (1664–1724), based on ‘Orlando furioso’

by Ludovico Ariosto (1474–1533)

 

 

 

Am I still alive? And have no sword?

Oh! Gods! What shall I do?

What is your advice? Oh, what cares are mine!

Treacherous trick! In the paramour’s arms

betrayed into death’s clutches

am I by your guilt.

But in order to break the unworthy chains,

in the guise of a shade, a disembodied spirit,

I shall return to punish you.

Treacherous trick! In the paramour’s arms, etc.

Translation © Avril Bardoni

 

Handel - Ariodante

Ballet music and accompanied recitative.

 

Ginevra

What horror! Oh heavens!

Wretched am I …

My weeping and my grief find no peace …

Even in sleeping.

 

Handel - Theodora

Oh, that I on wings could rise

Swiftly sailing through the skies,

As skims the silver dove!

That I might rest,

For ever blest,

With harmony and love.

Oh, that I on wings could rise, etc.

Thomas Morell (1703–84)

 

Handel - Messiah

He was despised

 

He was despised and rejected of men,

A man of sorrows, and acquainted with Grief.

Isaiah 53: 3

He gave his back to the smiters, and his cheeks to them that

plucked off the hair: He hid not his face from shame and spitting.

Isaiah 50: 6

 

 

Handel - Giulio Cesare in Egitto

Se pieta (Cleopatra)

 

Se pietà di me non senti,

Giusto, ciel, io morirò,

Tu da’ pace a’ miei tormenti,

O quest’alma spirerò.

Se pietà di me non senti, etc.

Nicola Francesco Haym (1678–1729),

after Giacomo Francesco Bussani

 

Just heaven, if for me

you feel no pity, I shall die.

Grant peace to my torments,

or my soul will perish.

Just heaven, if for me, etc.

Translation © Estate of Lionel Salter

 

Handel - Semele

Myself I shall adore (Semele)

 

Myself I shall adore,

If I persist in gazing.

No object sure before

Was ever half so pleasing.

Myself I shall adore, etc.

William Congreve (1670–1729)

Handel - Ariodante

Dopo notte (Ariodante)

 

Dopo notte atra e funesta,

Splende in ciel più vago il sole,

E di gioia empie la terra.

Mentre in orrida tempesta

Il mio legno è quasi assorto,

Giunge in porto, e’l lido afferra.

Dopo notte atra e funesta, etc.

 

 

After a dark and dreary night

the sun appears brighter than ever,

and fills the world with joy.

After weathering a fearful storm

that almost overwhelms my ship,

it gains the harbour and ties up by the shore.

After weathering a fearful storm, etc.

Translation © Avril Bardoni

 

Handel - Hercules

There, in myrtle shades (Dejanira)

 

There, in myrtle shades reclined,

By streams that through Elysium wind,

In sweetest union we shall prove

Eternity of bliss and love.

 

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