Handel's Julius Caesar in Egypt From Turin

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Thursday, January 08, 2015

Sonia Prina as Julius Caesar and Jud Perry as Tolomeo in Handel's 'Julius Caesar in Egypt' from the Royal Theater in Turin, Italy. Sonia Prina as Julius Caesar and Jud Perry as Tolomeo in Handel's 'Julius Caesar in Egypt' from the Royal Theater in Turin, Italy. (Ramella & Giannese/Teatro Regio Torino)
Operavore

Not too long ago, many people were surprised to learn that Handel was among the most acclaimed opera composers of his time. By now, he's quickly becoming a favorite of our own time, as well. The colorful drama Giulio Cesare (Julius Caesar in Egypt) is one of the many Handel operas being heard more and more often in the world's theaters. 

In this production of Handel's Giulio Cesare, the opera's two romantic leads are sung by women: contralto Sonia Prina as Julius Caesar, originally a castrato role, and soprano Jessica Pratt as Cleopatra. Two of Handel's other castrato roles are taken by countertenor Jud Perry as Tolomeo, and mezzo-soprano Samantha Korbey as Nireno. Host Lisa Simeone brings us the opera from the Royal Theater in Turin, Italy, in a performance led by conductor Alessandro de Marchi.

Cast:
Julius Caesar: Sonia Prina (contralto)
Cleopatra: Jessica Pratt (soprano)
Tolomeo: Jud Perry (countertenor)
Cornelia: Sara Mingardo (contralto)
Sesto: Maite Beaumont (soprano)
Achilla: Guido Loconsolo (bass)
Curio: Antonio Abete (bass)
Nireno: Riccardo Angelo Strano (countertenor)

Teatro Regio Orchestra and Chorus
Alessandro de Marchi, conductor

Comments [3]

WQXR

@Jud Perry,

Thanks for your note and for catching this. You are, of course, correct, and we've let World Of Opera know about the cast mistake and have updated it on our website, too.

Jan. 08 2015 03:37 PM
David from Flushing

I wish the fad for using counter tenors for castrati parts would pass. From the single recording that has survived, we know that castrati sounded more similar to women than a male singing in falsetto. Counter tenors often lack the volume of the female singers and make for a poor balance at times. It seems the only reason they are used is because they are portraying a male character. As a high pitched male is artificial to start, why can we not just live with the illusion.

Jan. 08 2015 02:17 PM
Jud Perry from Germany

The cast list is mislabeled. Nireno is sung by Riccardo Angelo Strano (countertenor).

Jan. 07 2015 05:36 PM

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