Arias from musical settings of the epic poem Orlando furioso by Ludovico Ariosto
ANTONIO VIVALDI Concerto in A minor for two violins and orchestra RV 522
ANTONIO VIVALDI Ruggiero’s aria “Sol da te, mio dolce amore” from Orlando furioso, RV 728
GEORGE FRIDERIC HANDEL Orlando’s aria “Fammi combattere” from Orlando
ANTONIO VIVALDI Trio Sonata in D minor, RV 63 – “La follia”
NICOLA PORPORA Orlando’s aria “Ombre amene” from Angelica e Medoro
NICOLA PORPORA Orlando’s aria “Vanne, felice rio” from Angelica e Medoro
GEORGE FRIDERIC HANDEL Orlando’s aria “Già l’ebro mio ciglio” from Orlando
ANTONIO VIVALDI Orlando’s “Sorge l’irato nembo” from Orlando furioso RV 728
ANTONIO VIVALDI Bassoon Concerto in E minor, RV 484
GEORGE FRIDERIC HANDEL Orlando’s aria “Cielo! se tu il consenti” from Orlando
ANTONIO VIVALDI Orlando’s aria “Nel profondo cieco mondo” from Orlando furioso RV 728
Print programme (PDF)
Ludovico Ariosto conjures up a storybook universe in his Orlando furioso. The sprawling epic poem with intricate plots recounts acts of great chivalry, shows the power of love, and caricatures an aristocracy in decline. The fantastical journey steers us to enchanted islands, the Holy Land, and Arabia, through the Frankish Empire and British Isles, and up to the moon. The earliest version of the work appeared in 40 cantos in 1516 and inspired numerous composers well into the
18th century, leading to notable settings by Lully, Vivaldi, Handel, and many others up until Haydn. Ariosto’s plot has also been heavily drawn upon in the literary world, from Shakespeare through to contemporary fantasy epics.
Premiered in 1727 in Venice, Vivaldi’s Orlando furioso is, owing to its dazzling arias and expressive recitatives, among the composer’s most significant operatic works. Five years later, George Frideric Handel tailored his operatic adaptation of the lovelorn and enraged Orlando to the voice of his favourite castrato Senesino. Ariosto’s epic poem also inspired Pietro Metastasio, whose libretto Angelica e Medoro was set by Nicola Porpora, marking the debut of the then 15-year-old Farinelli. Max Emanuel Cencic, one of the world’s leading countertenors, will mark his Salzburg Festival debut with musical Orlando-settings.