Concert aria Ch’io mi scordi di te? k.505 for soprano, piano and orchestra is one of Mozart’s most extraordinary creations, merging elements of opera and concerto into one work. This work was composed between operas The Marriage of Figaro and Don Giovanni. Despite being a relatively short piece, at just over 10 minutes duration, I consider it to be one of the Mozart gems that deserves to be more widely known.
My favourite recording from 1991 is sung by Italian coloratura mezzo-soprano, Cecilia Bartoli, accompanied by András Schiff on the piano. The piece starts off with soprano and orchestra, where Bartoli, in fine voice, accentuates the regret and yearning of the piece. The piano joins after about two minutes and Schiff accompanies with sensitivity and charm, a true partner in the proceedings. At around five minutes, Bartoli spits the lines Stelle barbare, stelle spietate (Barbarous stars, pitiless stars) with venomous vigour. She has a wonderfully rich, full, lush voice throughout.
Links to the recordings (track 7):Amazon.com
Below is a performance by Renee Fleming conducted and accompanied by Christoph Eschenbach.