Photo: Marco Borggreve
It’s become a tradition for rising stars, or those already arrived, to record opera arias by Handel. American countertenor Bejun Mehta follows suit by giving a stunning performance in a new Harmonia Mundi release entitled “Ombra cara.”
From beginning to end, Mehta and the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra (directed by Rene Jacobs) give new life to Handel’s music, exuding a fresh and vibrant perspective. Mehta is joined by soprano Rosemary Joshua in a moving duet that closes the program.
Nathalie Stutzmann’s classic recording of Handel arias with the Hanover Band was re-released a few years ago, which meant many more people could enjoy her poetic singing. Her deep, rich contralto voice is surprisingly agile, easily dispatching Handel’s more difficult arias and creating some very exciting moments.