Dima Orsho © Martina Novak

Musica Alta Ripa

Nuria Rial - soprano (occident)

Dima Orsho - soprano (orient)

Danya Segal - idea and recorder

Nuria Rial © Merce Rial

Virgin - Queen - Goddess

Perspectives on the mother in Baroque arias and Arabic songs


Mothers have always been a fascinating subject of art and music. The way, the image of a mother is conceived, is strongly influenced by the social and cultural context. Despite all obvious differences between the cultures, the idea of motherhood includes always a certain spirit of feeling at home - a fact that makes this topic especially appealing with regard to today’s European societies of migration and cultural mixture.

Virgin Mary, empress Agrippina, Ino or Babylonian Queen Nitocris are only some of the mothers appearing in this programme which combines arias from Early Music cantatas, operas and oratories, sung by Spanish soprano Nuria Rial, with Arabic songs and lullabies performed by Syrian soprano Dima Orsho. Besides to the romantic image of the loving and caring mother, aspects like violence, revengefulness and pain will show the variety of the topic and may lead to the conclusion that, notwithstanding that musical languages are quite different, Occident and Orient are culturally not as far away from each other as it might seem at the beginning.

Traditional Schlaf Kindlein, schlaf (German lullaby (approx. 1611))
Georg Friedrich Handel (1685-1789) Giunta L‘Ora Fatal
  Se D'Un Dio Fui Fatta Madre
  From: ll Pianto di Maria HWV 234
Traditional “Wa Habibi” (Song of the Cristian Syriac-Maronites on Good Friday)
Georg Ph. Telemann (1681-1767) Wohin? Wo soll ich hin?
  Ungöttliche Saturnia
  O, all Ihr Mächtigen des Olympus
  From: “Ino” - Dramatic Cantata TWV: 20:41
Traditional „Nini“ (Lullaby from Damascus)
Georg Friedrich Handel (1685-1789) Can I see my infant gor'd
  From: Salomon HWV 67
Georg Friedrich Handel (1685-1789) Musette
  From: ll Pastor Fido HWV8a
Georg Ph. Telemann (1681-1767) Komm, o schlaf
  From: Germanicus TWV 21:3b
Traditional „Hidwa“ (Song from Deir ez-Zour, Syria)
Georg Friedrich Handel (1685-1789) Oh sentence too severe
  Regard, oh son, my flowing tears
  From: Belshazzar HWV 61
Georg Friedrich Handel (1685-1789) Ouverture and Lamentations of the Israelites
  From: Israel in Egypt HWVS4
Georg Friedrich Handel (1685-1789) Duet: Great victor, at your feet I bow
  From: Belshazzar HWV 61
Georg Friedrich Handel (1685-1789) Tamburino
  From: Alcina HWV 34
Dima Orsho (*1975) ISHTAR: The greater Mother
  (Commissioned work for that programme)
  • Duration: approx. 70 minutes without interval (can be extended to 90’ with interval on request)

  • Instrumentation: Dima Orsho, Nuria Rial, recorder, bassoon, 2 violins, viola, violoncello, doublebass, lute, harpsichord (415 Hz), duduk/trumpet, buzuq, 2 percussionists, light engineer. Stage: approx. 10 (8)m x 5m

Musica Alta Ripa © ChristianWyrwa

Musica Alta Ripa

Founded in Hannover, the specialized Early Music ensemble Musica Alta Ripa is today known for its exceptionally high artistic level, vivid interpretations, flexible instrumentations and appealing programmes as has been awarded three times the prestigious ECHO Klassik. Thus the ensemble has already been invited to perform at important concert venues and festivals such as Tage Alter Musik Herne, Bach-Fests Leipzig, Festival van Vlaanderen Brugge and Bach Festival in Philadelphia. Furthermore Musica Alta Ripa toured the Middle East and Southeast Asia.