GEORGE FRIDERIC HANDEL (1685-1759)
   
 Semele, HWV 58 169:35  
  first complete recording on period instruments  
  A musical theatrical entertainment in three acts  
  Based on a libretto by William Congreve  
  Edited by Clifford Bartlett  
1 No. 1. Ouverture. [ ] 2:32
2 Allegro - Adagio - 3:41
3 Gavotte 1:30
  Act I  
  Scene 1  
4 No. 2. Cadmus: 'Behold! auspicious flashes rise!' 1:23
5 No. 3. Chorus: 'Lucky omens bless our rites' 3:15
6 No. 4. Cadmus: 'Daughter, obey' 0:55
7 No. 5. Semele: 'Ah me! What refuge now is left me?' 2:43
8 No. 6. Semele: 'The morning lark to mine accords his note' 7:25
9 No. 7. Athamus: 'See, she blushing turns her eyes' 0:16
10 No. 8. Athamus: 'Hymen, haste, thy torch prepare' 4:46
11 No. 9. Ino: 'Alas! she yields' 0:42
12 No. 10. Cadmus: 'Why does thou thus untimely grieve' 3:02
13 No. 11. Chorus: 'Avert those omens, all ye pow'rs!' 2:00
14 No. 12. Cadmus: 'Again auspicious flashes rise' 0:38
15 No. 13. Athamus: 'Thy aid, pronubial Juno, Athamus implores' 0:14
16 No. 14. Chorus: 'Cease, cease your vows, 'tis impious to proceed' 0:32
  Scene 2  
17 No. 15. Athamus: 'O Athamus, what torture hast thou borne!' 0:29
18 No. 16. Ino: 'Turn, hopeless lover, turn thy eyes' 8:01
19 No. 17. Athamus: 'She weeps! The gentle maid, in tender pity' 0:18
20 No. 18. Athamus: 'Your tuneful voice my tale would tell' 3:50
21 No. 19. Ino: 'Too well I see' 0:43
22 No. 20. Ino: 'You've undone me' 2:26
  Scene 3  
23 No. 21. Cadmus: 'Ah, wretched Prince, doom'd to disastrous love!' - 2:08
  Scene 4  
  Cadmus: 'See, see, Jove's Priests and holy Augurs come'  
24 No. 22. Chorus: 'Hail, Cadmus, hail! Jove salutes the Theban King' 1:30
25 No. 23. Semele: 'Endless pleasure, endless love' 4:50
  Act II  
26 No. 24. Sinfonia. Presto 1:34
  Scene 1  
27 No. 25. June: 'Iris, impatient of thy stay' 0:47
28 No. 26. Iris: 'There, from mortal cares retiring' 3:39
29 No. 27. Juno: 'No more - I'll hear no more' 2:04
30 No. 28. Juno: 'Hence, Iris, hence away' 3:50
  Scene 2  
31 No. 30. Semele: 'O sleep, why dost thou leave me?' 2:54
  Scene 3  
32 No. 31. Semele: 'Let me not another moment' 0:19
33 No. 32. Jupiter: 'Lay your doubts and fears aside' 3:06
34 No. 33. Jupiter: 'You are mortal, and require' 0:17
35 No. 34. Semele: 'With fond desiring' 3:21
36 No. 35. Chorus: 'How engaging, how endearing' 3:04
37 No. 36. Semele: 'Ah me!' - 1:07
  Jupiter: 'Why sighs my Semele?'  
38 No. 37. Jupiter: 'I must with speed amuse her' 3:56
39 No. 38. Chorus: 'Now Love that everlasting boy invites' 2:21
40 No. 39. Jupiter: 'By my command' 1:03
41 No. 40. Jupiter: 'Where'er you walk, cool gales shall fan the glade' 4:56
  Scene 4  
42 No. 41. Semele: 'Dear sister, how was your passage hither?' 0:39
43 No. 42. Ino: 'But hark! the heav'nly sphere turns round' 2:26
44 No. 43. Ino and Semele: 'Prepare then, ye immortal choir' 1:57
45 No. 44. Chorus: 'Bless the glad earth with heav'nly lays' 2:42
  Act III  
46 No. 45. [Sinfonia.] Larghetto e piano per tutto 1:28
  Scene 1  
47 No. 46. Juno: 'Somnus, awake' 0:31
48 No. 47. Somnus: 'Leave me, loathsome light' 3:26
49 No. 48. Iris: 'Dull God, canst thou attend the water's fall' 0:29
50 No. 49. Somnus: 'More sweet is that name' 2:27
51 No. 50. Juno: 'My will obey' 1:14
52 No. 51. Juno: 'Obey my will, thy rod resign' 1:59
  Scene 2  
53 No. 52. Semele: 'My racking thoughts by no kind slumbers freed' 2:42
  Scene 3  
54 No. 53. Juno: 'Thus shap'd like Ino' 1:26
55 No. 54. Semele: 'Myself I shall adore' 7:16
56 No. 55. Juno: 'Be wise, as you are beautiful' 1:48
57 No. 56. Semele: 'Thus let my tanks be paid' 2:20
58 No. 57. Juno: 'Rich odours fill the fragrant air' 0:22
  Scene 4  
59 No. 58. Jupiter: 'Come to my arms, my lovely fair' 2:51
60 No. 59. Jupiter: 'O Semele' 0:06
61 No. 60. Semele: 'I ever am granting' 1:35
62 No. 61. Jupiter: 'Speak, speak your desire' 0:37
63 No. 62. Semele: 'You'll grant what I require' 0:10
64 No. 63. Semele: 'Then cast off this human shape which you wear' 0:16
65 No. 64. Jupiter: 'Ah, take heed what you press' 1:14
66 No. 65. Semele: 'No, no! I'll take no less' 5:12
  Scene 5  
67 No. 66. Jupiter: 'Ah! whither is she gone! unhappy fair!' 3:06
  Scene 6  
68 No. 67. Juno: 'Above measure' 2:22
  Scene 7  
69 No. 68. Semele: 'Ah me! too late I now repent' 3:07
  Scene 8  
70 No. 69. Ino: 'Of my ill-boding dream' 0:12
71 No. 70. Chorus: 'O terror and astonishment!' 4:00
72 No. 71. Ino: 'How I was hence remov'd' 0:41
73 No. 72. Athamus: 'Despair no more shall wound me' 5:07
74 No. 73. Cadmus: 'See from above the bellying clouds descend' 0:14
  Scene 9  
75 No. 74. Sinfonia. [ ] 1:19
76 No. 75. Apollo: 'Apollo comes to relieve your care' 0:43
77 No. 76. All: 'Happy, happy shall we be' 3:02
  Mortals  
 Rosemary Joshua soprano - Semele
 Hilary Summers contralto - Ino
 Brindley Sherratt bass - Cadmus
 Stephen Wallace counter-tenor - Athamus
  Immortals  
 Richard Croft tenor - Jupiter
 Hilary Summers contralto - Juno
 Gail Pearson soprano - Iris
 Brindley Sherratt bass - Somnus
 Richard Croft tenor - Apollo
 Christian Curnyn
  16-20 April 2007