"I doubt anyone who had never heard Favella Lyrica could imagine what they do, or how well they do it: We've never heard anything quite like the duet singing of Pamela Murray and Pamela Dellal." 



Vocal Duets of G.F. Handel

As their second recording for KOCH International Classics, following their critically acclaimed debut recording Sweet Torment, Favella Lyrica presents a selection of music from the Italian chamber duets for voices and continuo by George Frideric Handel. This recording was released in January of 1997, to rave reviews.

The Italian chamber duets of Handel are almost completely unknown, a strange situation for one of the most beloved and best known composers of all time. With the exception of two duets he wrote in London in 1741, from which he later borrowed material to use in Messiah, one hardly ever encounters them on recordings or in performance. Favella Lyrica proposes to remedy this oversight and introduce a spectacular body of literature to the music-loving public. The duets stem from two different periods in Handel's life: an early set, written in the 1710s when he studied in Italy, and a late set, written in the 1740s in London, during the period when Handel was turning from opera to oratorio. They are filled with contrast and excitement: glorious adagios with the melodic genius from the composer of Xerxes, brilliant coloratura passages that display the voice with the canniness of the great operas such as Giulio Cesare, high passion and drama, and light humor and playfulness. Handel himself regarded these works as a treasure trove of musical ideas that he drew upon his entire career for material in some of his best-known works: the astute listener will be astonished to hear tunes that later turn up in Messiah, Alexander's Feast, Belshazzar, Acis and Galatea, and other beloved oratorios. This is music that deserves equal recognition with Handel's other works for chamber ensemble, such as the sonatas, cantatas and Concerti Grossi.


Langue, geme HWV 188

Tanti strali al sen mi scocchi HWV 197

Va, speme infida pur HWV 199

Beato in ver chi può HWV 181

Fronda leggiera e mobile HWV 186

Ahi, nelle sorti umane HWV 179

Quel fior che all'alba ride HWV 192

Nò, di voi non vuo' fidarmi HWV 189