Harmonia Early Music

What’s on YouTube: Philippe Jaroussky

French countertenor Philippe Jaroussky and the many Youtube videos that feature him.

singer with sunglasses

Photo: Bernard Gordillo

Philippe Jaroussky, one of today's more prominent countertenors.

The countertenor voice is arguably one of the more special sounds heard in classical music today.  It has a quality that is sensuous, otherworldly, and mesmerizing.  And like other voice types, the quality as well as the character depend on the singer. In other words, not all countertenor voices are the same. Some are more special than others for different reasons.

French countertenor Philippe Jaroussky is an exceptional musician who is at the top of his field. The many videos of him on Youtube show how special his voice is and how popular his videos have become (one had has over 800,000 views).

But he wasn’t always “award-winning” and famous. Here’s a video of him performing an aria from Alessandro Scarlatti’s Sedecia with Il Seminario Musicale while in his early twenties:

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jGzfYcWcNvc

Now fast forward a few years to a performance of a Vivaldi aria with Ensemble Matheus. He went from very good and professional to stunning. Experience makes all the difference, is priceless, and ultimately helps to create a more seasoned performance:

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g0ifquyvCEo

It is also encouraging to see that while at the top, he doesn’t take himself too seriously. Here he is in performance with L’Arpeggiata being playful with two fellow “singers”:

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EZ-VsKB_tNwe

Bernard Gordillo

Bernard Gordillo was born in Managua, Nicaragua, and raised in New Orleans. He holds degrees from Centenary College of Louisiana, the Early Music Institute at Indiana University, and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama (London). Bernard also writes and hosts the Harmonia Early Music Podcast.

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  • Jester

    Truly great performance! Much like Enae Volare (the official fight music of Fedor Emelianenko.), it's an amazing musical piece and profoundly raises the human spirit.

  • Jester

    Truly great performance! Much like Enae Volare (the official fight music of Fedor Emelianenko.), it's an amazing musical piece and profoundly raises the human spirit.

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