Handel's Semele from Toronto

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Thursday, December 27, 2012

Handel's 'Semele' from Toronto. Handel's Semele from Toronto. (Chris Hutcheson)

• Listen to the Operavore stream

Described by George Frideric Handel as an opera "in the manner of an oratorio," Semele has something for everyone. It's written and sung in English, befitting its original Covent Garden billing as an "English oratorio," yet it shares the Italian opera style that made Handel one of the most popular composers of his time.

This production comes from the Four Seasons Center for the Performing Arts in Toronto, home to the Canadian Opera Company. The production, sung in the original English, stars soprano Jane Archibald in a smashing performance as Semele, with tenor William Burden as the lecherous god Jupiter and mezzo-soprano Allyson McHardy as Jupiter's jealous wife, Juno.

Cast:

Conductor: Rinaldo Alessandrini

Semele: Jane Archibald (soprano)

Jupiter: William Burden (tenor)

Juno, Ino: Allyson McHardy (mezzo-soprano)

Cadmus, Somnus: Steven Humes (bass)

Athamas: Anthony Ross Costanza (countertenor)

Iris: Katherine Whyte (soprano)

Canadian Opera Company Orchestra and Chorus

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