Handel: Finest Arias for Base Voice, Vol.2

Arcangelo & Christopher Purves (Baritone)

Following the critical success of ‘Finest Arias for Base Voice’, Arcangelo and Christopher Purves revisit Handel’s ever-varied writing for bass singers with a new selection of character arias from operas and oratorios. Also featured is the remarkable and seldom-heard solo cantata Nell’Africane Selve: a 17-minute work with an outlandish three-octave vocal range. 

Featured works

  • Handel: ‘Gelido in ogni vena’ from Siroe, Re di Persia HWV24
  • Handel: ‘Turn not, O Queen’ from Esther HWV50a
  • Handel: ‘When storms the proud’ from Athalia HWV52
  • Handel: ‘Oh, memory!’ from Belshazzar HWV61
  • Handel: ‘Opprest with never-ceasing grief’ from Belshazzar HWV61
  • Handel: ‘È ver che all’amo intorno’ from Catone HWVA7
  • Handel: Concerto grosso in F Major HWV315 Op.3/4a
  • Handel: ‘Piangi pur’ from Tolomeo, Re di Egitto HWV25
  • Handel: ‘Ah, canst thou but prove me!’ from Athalia HWV52
  • Handel: Nell’africane selve HWV136a
  • Handel: ‘The walls are levell’d’ from Joshua HWV64
  • Handel: ‘See, the raging flames arise’ from Joshua HWV64
  • Handel: ‘How art thou fall’n from thy height!’ from Esther HWV50a
  • Handel: ‘Tu di pietà mi spogli’ from Siroe, Re di Persia HWV24
  • Handel: ‘Vieni, o cara’ from Rinaldo, HWV7a
  • Handel: ‘Shall I in Mamre’s fertile plain’ from Joshua HWV64

Press & Praise


“This superb follow-up [to Vol. 1] makes you wonder anew at the composer’s inventive variety…Purves is surely unique among today’s Anglophone singers in fusing an easily produced high baritone, by turns mellifluous and incisive, with a clean, resonant bass register… …Ever alive to texture and subtleties of colour, Arcangelo on their own give a fresh, spirited account of one of the Op 3 Concerti grossi.”


“Some of Handel’s greatest music was written for bass-baritones, and in Purves finds its ideal interpreter.

Album Details

  • Released July 2018
  • Hyperion Records | CDA68152


  • Christopher Purves (Baritone)
  • Arcangelo
  • Jonathan Cohen (Direction)


Gramophone Awards

Nominee 2019

Gramophone Magazine

Editor’s choice Aug 2018

BBC Music Magazine

Opera choice Sep 2018

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