Purcell: Dido and Aeneas

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Ama Deus Ensemble
Valentin Radu, Conductor
Soloists: Julianne Baird (Dido), Timothy Bentch (Aeneas), Andrea Lauren Brown (Belinda)
Recorded: February 2007 at Arch Street United Methodist Church, Philadelphia, PA
Label: Lyrichord/ The Lyrichord Early Music Series
Catalog #: LEMS 8057
On-Line Price: $15
Purcell's 1689 English masque, Dido and Aeneas, based on Virgil's "Aenead", tells a story of a much-encapsulated love plot centering on the affair and betrayal of Carthaginian Queen Dido by the wandering prince Aeneas. As this was an entertainment for young people, Purcell employs lively dances and choruses, boozy sailors and a coven of weird witches to spice up the action. Only Dido, cast here with celebrated early Music soprano Julianne Baird, gets the arias-most notably her glorious lament "When I am laid in earth." Dido and Aeneas is paired here with Purcell's charming A Midsummer Night's Suite, a pastiche of dance tunes from his Fairy Queen. Recorded with the original cast of the Kimmel Center staged production of February 16, 2007.

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