Anna Caterina Antonacci here conjures an evocative and warming account of fin de siècle Mediterranean ardour through songs by the likes of Tosti, Hahn and Respighi, including the latter's "Sopra un'aria Antica".
Hahn in particular paints an erotically charged portrait of Venetian romance – an exquisite languor beautifully evoked in Antonacci's expressive intonations, notably the undulating "Ah!"s that conclude each verse of "La Barcheta", and the sly relish with which she depicts the paramour's indiscretion in the final verse of "La Biondina in Gondoleta". Tosti's songs, by contrast, are seething with heightened desire and sensuality.
Download: La Biondina in Gondoleta; La Barcheta; Sopra un'aria Antica