by Antonio Caldara and Alessandro Stradella

Mauro Borgioni (bass), Francesco Baroni (cembalo)
first recordings

Rome is the scene of our journey: the stories of intrigue, passion, treachery and death related here date from ancient times; the music, written for high society salons by composers Antonio Caldara and Alessandro Stradella, dates from the Baroque and despite ­being simply called cantatas, these works are actually miniature music dramas. The thousands of manuscripts dating from the Baroque era still preserved in libraries and archives today testify to the popularity of such gems. Alessandro Scarlatti alone is said to have written over 700 cantatas.

Like his works in this form, those of Caldara and Stradella are structured in the perfected form of recitative and aria. All the cantatas performed here are based on historic events and are imbued with themes of death and liberty. Seneca, Nero’s tutor and advisor, is the protagonist of both Stradella compositions, at the moment in which the drama of the philosopher’s suicide (on Nero’s insistence) unfolds. The emperor’s savagery knows no bounds since the time he had his own mother murdered, believing her to be an ­accomplice in a conspiracy against him. Death, despite its ­violence, allows a person to achieve true freedom. The text’s tragic content is linked to the vocal line here with an attention both to the subject and its formal poetic appearance underlined by the musical structures.


Benedetto Marcello (1686 – 1739)
Sonata in D
Antonio Caldara
(1670 – 1736)
«Brutto A Romani» Cantata a voce sola
text by Domenico Borini
Bernardo Pasquini (1637 – 1710)
Altra Allemanda
Alessandro Stradella (1639 – 1682)
«Seneca svenato» Cantata a voce sola
Bernardo Pasquini (1637 – 1710)
Partite diverse di Follia
Bernardo Pasquini (1637 – 1710)
Altra di seguito
Antonio Caldara (1670 – 1736)
«Il Dario» Cantata a voce sola
Alessandro Stradella (1639 – 1682)
«Seneca a Nerone» Cantata a voce sola

Mauro Borgioni   bass
Francesco Baroni   harpsichord

fb 1405623
EAN code 4260307436230