Anyone who knows Patricia Petibon is aware that her artistic self-image and her singing are, first of all, uncompromising. She would never shy away from rendering with all clarity the bipolar fluctuations of the "women on the verge of a nervous breakdown" in the operas of the 18th century. Especially in the case of composers such as Rameau, Gluck or Mozart, where the text plays a far more significant role than, for example, in Handel's work, the French singer-actress is eager to convey something of the impression that these obsessive figures had on listeners of the time to the 21st century audience, who are now difficult to shake up.
La Traversée is all about tragic heroines: Phaedra, Electra, Cleopatra, Armida … This programme revolves around desperate entreaty, searing hatred, furious jealousy and base intrigue, most frequently the result of spurned love. In their selection of arias, Patricia Petibon, Andrea Marcon and La Cetra embark upon a daring traversée, or traversal, of emotions. The musical choices run the gamut of composers from Henry Purcell and Stefano Landi to George Frideric Handel, Christoph Willibald Gluck and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. In all of them, the performers throw themselves into the music with abandon, and the listener recognizes the radiant esprit they have shared for many years.
Under Andrea Marcon’s baton, the baroque orchestra La Cetra and the Vokalensemble Basel prove themselves chameleons of sound, adapting to Patricia Petibon’s most minute vocal nuances with skill and fervour.