The Untamed Beauty of the Jerusalem Delivered

Les Belles Insoumises Akademia


  • Michelangelo Rossi (1602-1656)
    Erminia sul Giordano (extraits)
  • Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643)
    Il Combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda
  • Cristofaro Caresena (1640-1709)
    Tancredi sulla morte di Clorinda
  • Francesco Geminiani (1687-1762)
    La Foresta incantata  (extraits)
  • Marco Marazzoli (1619-1662)
    Lamento d’Armida
  • Jean-Baptiste Lully (1632-1687)
    Armide (extraits)

In 1581, the Italian poet Tasso created several portraits of unsubmissive women who appear in the 20 songs of his epic poem on the First Crusade, Jerusalem Delivered.They are Muslim or Christian, amazons or magicians, in love or fighting. The rich and complex characters he portrays have charmed many compositors since the opera was created. This enthusiasm was to last until Brahms and Dvořák’s time.

The characters :
Hermine of Antioch, who is in love with the knight Tancred,
Clorinda: a Saracen warrior whom Tancred is in love with,
Armida: the witch…

The Akadêmia ensemble’s soloists and orchestra bring these untamed women from Jerusalem Delivered back to life, through compositions written by Claudio Monteverdi, Michelangelo Rossi, Cristofaro Caresana, Antonio Vivaldi, Nicolò Jommelli as well as Jean-Baptiste Lully.


Dagmar Saskova, soprano
Jan Van Elsacker, tenor

2 violins, viola, cello, violone, harpsichord, theorbo, viola da gamba

Françoise Lasserre, conductor


  • Classica/Répertoire (12/05)
  • Classica/Répertoire (12/05)

    Recording of Il Combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda (Zig-Zag Territoires)

    “Here is a virtually perfect disc. Françoise Lasserre does not content herself with breathing her humanism into an outstanding interpretation of the work . . . The great strength of Françoise Lasserre, in Monteverdi as in Schütz, is the way she anchors her interpretations in a humanist certainty that makes her love not only the musical material, which she shapes in detail and without concessions, but also love the gift she will make of it to the listener, without the least suspicion of sham seduction or consciously playing on the audience’s emotions, simply by leaving her own mark on the music and achieving its transformation. An artistic attitude that inspires respect.”

    Sophie Roughol (Classica/Répertoire, 12/05)

  • Télérama (09/11/05)
  • Télérama (09/11/05)

    Recording of Il Combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda (Zig-Zag Territoires)

    “In the Combattimento, the narration of the Testo – magnificently declaimed by the tenor Jan van Elsacker – reactivates the violent emotions of the protagonists, raised to white heat by the instrumentalists of the Ensemble Akadêmia.”

    Gilles Macassar (Télérama, 09/11/05)

  • Goldberg (2006)
  • Goldberg (2006)

    Recording of Il Combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda (Zig-Zag Territoires)

    This first incursion of Françoise Lasserre into the secular repertory makes for a fascinating disc. For example, Interrotte speranze emerges from silence to the sound of the lirone, in a crescendo that overwhelms the naked soul; the listener can but yield to his tears. And Françoise Lasserre places him at the very centre of the music as it is performed, as it is born one might almost say, so that he may follow the vocal and instrumental gestures more clearly. With her ample phrasing, the conductor creates a physical, exceptionally close relationship between characterful individual voices, enveloping them in a common language.”

    Goldberg (2006)

    Audio clips

    Combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda - Claudio Monteverdi

    Ottavo libro de Madrigali Claudio Monteverdi - Combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda


    "Il combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda" - Monteverdi