Review: Enchanted Island at Plymouth

“Sherezade Panthaki made a dramatic entrance with the bucolic Clérambault cantata. She has a commanding but responsive voice over which she exerts complete control. While she could easily fill a much larger space than Herr Chapel with her gorgeous sound, she uses her voice with wonderful restraint and applies a whole range of emotional color to put the text across. This became more obvious in the Rameau, which gave her and her instrumental colleagues more varied material to work with.

Throughout the program, oboe and violins played with impeccable blend and balance. Those of us who lived through the early days of the period instrument revival can only marvel at how far instrumental expertise has progressed.

Before the Rameau, Mark Edwards played three of the more popular keyboard works from Couperin’s Sixth Suite — “Les Langueurs tendres,” “Barricades Mystérieuses,” and “Les Bergeries” — joined on the first and third pieces by [Debra] Nagy, who justified her inclusion by reference to the composer’s own practice in the Concerts Royaux. That wasn’t really necessary, as Edwards plays these pieces wonderfully by himself, expertly spreading chords to make their lines sing. But who could object to hearing more from Nagy?” – Daniel Hathaway for ClevelandClassical

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