This is a wonderful recording that captures the shamefully short-lived Peter Hall production at Covent Garden, featuring his then-wife Maria Ewing in the title role. This is Covent Garden at its best - the production is sumptuously and stylishly designed, steeped in great decadence - the colours zing out from the screen in excellent lighting and camera work. The supporting cast are all fabulous, Kenneth Riegel giving a particularly vivid Herod, Michael Devlin is a powerful but dignified Jokanaan. The orchestra has an air of improvised energy skillfully guided by Edward Downes. But as with any production of Salome, the central role is the key to its success. Here Maria Ewing brings a disturbing edge to the Princess, absolutely obsessed with the Baptist - you can understand why Herod orders her to be killed! She is somewhat wayward with the vocal line, but never errs from the spirit of the piece - a crowning achievement and probably her most successful role!
The clarity of the recording is excellent too, and although it was recorded in 1992 stands up incredibly well to advances in technology - crystal clear and in perfect sound.
Higly recommended - along with Malfitano's account of the title role as a joint benchmark DVD recording!