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Stravinsky: Le Sacre du Printemps, The Firebird - Stravinksy and the Ballet Russes 100th Anniversary Collectors' Edition (Mariinsky Orchestra and Ballet / Valery Gergiev) DVD BOOK [2013]

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5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
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Stravinsky: Le Sacre du Printemps, The Firebird - Stravinksy and the Ballet Russes 100th Anniversary Collectors' Edition (Mariinsky Orchestra and Ballet / Valery Gergiev) DVD BOOK [2013] + Return of the Firebird (Liepa, Bolshoi Ballet) [DVD] (2002)
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Product details

  • Format: Classical, Colour, DVD-Video, Widescreen, PAL
  • Language: French
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: Exempt
  • Studio: Bel Air
  • DVD Release Date: 10 Jun 2013
  • Run Time: 85 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 49,731 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Product Description

In celebration of the creation of 'Le Sacre du printemps' in Paris in 1913, Bel Air present a new edition in a DVD-book of a wonderful Stravinsky night at the Mariinsky with the original Nijinsky version of the 'Rite of Spring' and 'The Firebird' both conducted by Valery Gergiev. The premiere of 'The Rite of Spring' at the Théâtre des Champs Élysées, Paris, on May 1913 caused a veritable scandal. The audience was shocked by the primitive violence of the ballet. It was so radically rejected that the ballet was taken off after eight performances. Although long forgotten, thanks to the relentless work of Millicent Hodson, Nijinsky s original choreography was recreated. 'The Firebird' is a Russian folk tale in two scenes commissioned from the young Stravinsky by Diaghilev and premiered at the Paris Opera House in 1910. The ballet was an immediate success. The Ballets Russes enabled the choreographer Fokine to bring to this enterprise the right amount of novelty needed to captivate but not alienate the audience. It was a total success. THE RITE OF SPRING choreography after Vaslav Nijinsky (1913), scenery, set, costumes: Igor Stravinsky and Nicholas Roerich, reconstructed and staged by Millicent Hodson, Kenneth Archer, lighting: Vladimir Lukin THE FIREBIRD choreography & libretto: Michel Fokine (1910), reconstruction: Isabelle Fokine, Andris Liepa, set and costume design: Anna and Anatoly Nezhny after original sketches by Alexander Golovin, Léon Bakst and Michel Fokine

Product Description

BELA 241; BEL AIR; Classica Orchestrale

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A last, a version to die for! 8 Nov 2013
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I have several versions of both The Rite and Firebird on DVD and without exception none has not lived up to my hopes - the version in my imagination has always been better! But for the first time along comes a production which ticks all the boxes and more. This new release is nothing short of magnificent- very Russian with authentic costume, choreography and dancing of the highest order, all superbly recorded and two of the greatest ballets ever conceived on the same DVD. No matter how long you wait it gets no better than this - believe me! Rush out and get your copy, this production deserves all the accolades and it certainly gets all my votes!
David Rilet, Poole, Dorset
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
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For as long as I've known Igor Stravinsky's masterpiece Le Sacre du Printemps, and learned about the tremendous scandal it caused at first staging, I dreamt of listening to, and watching that exact first performance. For many decades, this was impossible, since the choreography seemed to be lost, and not too many recounts of actual witnesses seemed to have survived.

Now, at the 100th anniversary of Le Sacre, my dream came true! All the pieces of the reconstruction puzzle have been unearthened by this diligent ballet dancing couple after decades of research and interviews, and the restaging was performed with the top-notch Mariinsky Orchestra with the even more perfect conductor Valéry Gergiev. All original costumes were re-created, the original choreography was performed, as well as the very first version of the music.
And to top it all off, it was recorded onto DVD and Blu-Ray!

It was quite emotional for me to watch this outstanding performance, to feel that I was witness as close as I could be to the very first staging, everything falling into place, a decades long quest and dream coming to a close!

And as if thát weren't enough, there's also the re-staging of the original performance of The Firebird!

Beyond words, filled with gratitude <3 <3 <3!!!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Productions 18 Dec 2013
By Joe - Published on
There is a recurring theme in the arts that if you try and reconstruct something ancient using modern resources, you end up with something new entirely. By trying to recreate the experience of ancient Greek theater, both opera and the music of Harry Partch emerged. Neither got the original experience perfectly right, but instead created something new with their resources. The same thing happened when Stravinsky and Nijinsky tried to recreate the experience of the inhabitants of ancient Russia. They certainly didn’t recreate it exactly, but what we got out of it was The Rite of Spring, one of the greatest ballets ever.
The Mariinsky Orchestra and Ballet’s performances of The Firebird and The Rite of Spring on DVD is a great performance that highlights a similar process that went into these works’ reconstruction. With no video documentation of the original productions, the choreography was painstakingly reconstructed from sketches, diaries, and reviews of the original productions. The process of reviving these works parallel their artistic inception.
As someone who has more familiarity with Stravinsky’s music, the choreography especially stood out. While Stravinsky’s music on its own can be a freewheeling beast in the concert hall, the performances and the interviews on this DVD reiterate that the choreography was what really elicited the violent, riotous reaction from the audience.
The music projected very well on TV speakers—I could hear the winds very clearly and that was really great for me. If you’re familiar with the Firebird suite, you might get thrown off by the pacing of the themes in the unabridged work, but overall it’s still quite enjoyable even if you’re just listening and not watching.
From the choreography side, if you’re looking for a DVD for your 4-year-old daughter who likes ballerinas to watch, this is not the thing to get. While there are some traditional Swan-Lakey kinds of gesturing, especially in Firebird, a lot of the dancing is angular, gyrating, almost-epileptic movement. Don’t get me wrong, it’s AWESOME, but it’s not traditional. I was in awe at the physicality of these dancers, especially of the crotchety yet powerful King Katschei in Firebird.
There are some flubs that make it into the final cuts of these performances, like an apple being dropped on the stage that gets in the dancers’ way during Firebird, but chalking them up to the variability and excitement of live performance, you can easily get past it. The supplemental material, including interviews with the artistic team that mounted the production, is informative and not overly long. This material focuses on the choreography, and not so much on Stravinsky’s compositional process, but it’s still a great resource for musicians, dancers, and amateurs alike.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Historic, fascinating, necessary 21 Jan 2014
By trastevere - Published on
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While John Neumeier's contemporary version of "Sacre" with Dresden (?), which I viewed at Teatro Massimo in Palermo, was even more exciting, this DVD is an historic document that all music lovers should view. The production of Firebird is glorious, too.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great DVD 13 Oct 2013
By Dave Weiner - Published on
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Excellent production of the original staging. What was merely conjecture before has now been brought back to stunning life. Terrific!
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No complaints 2 Jun 2014
By Michael Britz - Published on
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I have no complaints with the content of this DVD. This performance is probably the best I've ever seen on DVD compared to whatever else is currently on the market.
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