Armatae face et anguibus from Juditha Triumphans RV 644

Composer: Antonio Vivaldi (b. 1678 - d. 1741)
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Composer: Antonio Vivaldi (b. 1678 - d. 1741)

Performance date: 04/07/2013

Venue: St. Brendan’s Church

Composition Year: 1716

Duration: 00:05:01

Recording Engineer: Damian Chennells, RTÉ lyric fm

Instrumentation Category:Small Mixed Ensemble

Instrumentation Other: Mez-solo, 2vn ,va, vc, thb

Artists: Elbipolis Barockorchester Hamburg (Albrecht Kühner [violin], David Maria Gramse [violin], Lothar Haass [viola], Kate Hearne [cello & recorder], Andreas Arend [theorbo], Luise Haugk [oboe], Veronika Brass [harpsichord]) - [baroque ensemble]
Clara Mouriz - [mezzo-soprano]

face e aguibus
, a splendidly dramatic aria pleading to
the Furies for vengeance, is taken from Vivaldi’s oratorio Juditha Triumphans at the point where Vagaus discovers that Juditha
has beheaded Holofernes. The allegorical drama is one of one only four
oratorios written by Vivaldi and the only one which survives. The work has some
political significance, being commissioned to celebrate the victory of the
Republic of Venice over the Turks at the siege of Corfu in the summer of 1716.
The oratorio was completed and performed by an all-girl cast at the Pietà in
November of the same year, using a Latin libretto specially written by the
Venetian poet Giacomo Cassetti. Vivaldi sets the scene of the aria immediately
with his raging string ritornello, intensifying the mood with some
fantastically fiery coloratura passages, which leave the listener feeling
genuinely affected and afraid of the wrath that has been unleashed.