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Britten: Gloriana [DVD] [2006]

Alan Opie , Jean Rigby    Exempt   DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
Price: 18.22 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Frequently Bought Together

Britten: Gloriana [DVD] [2006] + Britten: Billy Budd [DVD] [2011] [2010]
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Product details

  • Actors: Alan Opie, Jean Rigby, Richard van Allan, Elizabeth Vaughan, Sarah Walker
  • Format: Classical, Colour, DVD-Video, PAL, Subtitled
  • Language: English, French, Spanish
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: Exempt
  • Studio: ARTHAUS
  • DVD Release Date: 2 Oct 2006
  • Run Time: 147 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000I2IUM0
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 84,173 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

Benjamin Britten's opera, composed to celebrate the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953. He took as his starting point Lytton Strachey's 'Elizabeth and Essex'. Sarah Walker and Anthony Rolfe Johnson star.

Product Description

ARTH 102097; ARTHAUS MUSIK - Germania;


Customer Reviews

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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A glorious Gloriana - 22 May 2009
By KC
Verified Purchase
I own the other two versions of this Opera on commercial release. I have to say that the Opera North (heavily edited) version has wonderful psychologically arresting performances. However, this 1983 ENO production has better vocalists in all the central roles. Whilst I prefer the emotional intensity of the Opera North production (Barstow is as fine an Elizabeth I as any on stage or screen), the drama is just as high in the ENO production because the vocalists are so fine; Sarah Walker has a steadier voice than Barstow's rather more 'superannuated' one. However, the orchestra is the most powerful recommendation for this DVD. The intensity of the orchestral performance is a revelation.

This is a glorious sounding Gloriana and has made me realise how special this opera is. This is far from being Britten's 'damp squib' composition. Indeed, I find it a work of great beauty, both subtle and thrilling. The finale is terribly moving. Britten surpassed himself for dramatic intensity in what was a composition of genius. This production helps us see just how good the opera is in the right hands. I recommend it. However, if you have the resources buy the Opera North one as well.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Outstanding Production 29 Oct 2013
By Colin W
Verified Purchase
This ENO production is excellent in every way. Sarah Walker is outstanding as Queen Elisabeth singing brilliantly and speaking the final scene very movingly. Anthony Rolfe Johnson is also superb in the role of Essex. Costumes are traditional which is exactly what you would want in this work. The set is flexible and works very well.
The opera itself is outstanding with powerful and moving music. Let's hope it remains a part of the standard repertoire.
Highly recommended.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Sumptuous and not at all dated 31 Mar 2014
Verified Purchase
'Gloriana' is a work I hardly know at all! I listened to the recording with Josephine Barstow many years ago but remembered very little of it. Told in a series of 'tableaux' from Elizabeth's life and her relationship with Essex, the narrative is episodic but effective, the music wide ranging with definite homage paid to Elizabethan music of the time. This (quite elderly now) ENO production is very traditional in both costumes and sets but the picture and sound quality are both very good and it doesn't show its age at all.

Anthony Rolfe Johnson is in lovely voice as Essex and its good to see such ENO stalwarts are Jean Rigby, Richard Van Allan and Alan Opie in other roles. The crowning glory in all this though - appropriately - is Sarah Walker as Elizabeth. I had no idea what a glorious singer and actress she is! A mezzo soprano who can also tackle the high notes in this role with ease - she is truly magnificent and successfully conveys all the Queen's many different moods throughout the piece. Highly recommended!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The most satisfying rendition of Gloriana available! 21 May 2009
By KC - Published on Amazon.com
I own the other two versions of this Opera on commercial release. I have to say that the Opera North (heavily edited) version has wonderful psychologically arresting performances. However, this 1983 ENO production has better vocalists in all the central roles. Whilst I prefer the emotional intensity of the Opera North production (Barstow is as fine an Elizabeth I as any on stage or screen), the drama is just as high in the ENO production because the vocalists are so fine; Sarah Walker has a steadier voice than Barstow's rather more 'superannuated' one. However, the orchestra is the most powerful recommendation for this DVD. The intensity of the orchestral performance is a revelation.

This is a glorious sounding Gloriana and has made me realise how special this opera is. This is far from being Britten's 'damp squib' composition. Indeed, I find it a work of great beauty, both subtle and thrilling. The finale is terribly moving. Britten surpassed himself for dramatic intensity in what was a composition of genius. This production helps us see just how good the opera is in the right hands. I recommend it. However, if you have the resources buy the Opera North one as well.
13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent realization of Britten's masterpiece! 15 Feb 2007
By rwu - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Both musically and dramatically I found this to be a very satisfying rendition of Britten's Coronation Year masterpiece. Sarah Walker's performance of the title role is a tour de force and the others in the cast support her well. The production, using a single unit set, is well conceived and appropriate. Recommended highly.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BRITTEN CHANNELS DONIZETTI AND BETTE DAVIS. 10 Oct 2013
By Alfredo R. Villanueva - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I must admit being a fan of Elizabeth I. Not historically, but in terms of her character both in film and opera. One cannot Listen to "Gloriana" without going back to Donizetti's "Roberto Devereux", "Maria Estuarda" and "Ana Bolena".
But, on the other hand, there is a classic of cinema very much present: "The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex", with one of the best Elizabeths of all time: Bette Davis. And I am almost sure that Sarah Walker did study Davis' portrayal of the aging, imperious queen. That said, she is a total actress/singer, ably surrounded by a stellar cast and an visually sumptuous production.
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