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Wagner: Rienzi [Torsten Kerl, Marika Schönberg, Daniela Sindram, Richard Wiegold] [Opus Arte: OA1110D] [DVD] [2013] [NTSC]

Torsten Kerl , Marika Schönberg    Exempt   DVD
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
Price: £24.75 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Wagner: Rienzi [Torsten Kerl, Marika Schönberg, Daniela Sindram, Richard Wiegold] [Opus Arte: OA1110D] [DVD] [2013] [NTSC] + Matilde Di Shabran: Pesaro Festival (Mariotti) [DVD] [2013] + Meyerbeer: Robert Le Diable [Bryan Hymel, Patrizia Ciofi, John Relyea] [Opus Arte: OA1106D] [DVD] [2013] [NTSC]
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Product details

  • Actors: Torsten Kerl, Marika Schönberg, Daniela Sindram, Rchard Wiegold, Robert Bork
  • Format: Classical, Colour, Dolby, DVD-Video, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, French, German, Korean
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Classification: Exempt
  • Studio: Opus Arte
  • DVD Release Date: 29 July 2013
  • Run Time: 231 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00DEROR32
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 85,951 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Product Description

German tenor Torsten Kerl takes the lead role in Jorge Lavelli's production of Wagner's third opera, recorded live at the Théâtre Du Capitole, Toulouse, in October 2012. The cast also includes Marika Schönberg, Daniela Sindram, Richard Wiegold and Stefan Heidemann, and the conductor is Pinchas Steinberg.

Product Description

OA 1110; OPUS ARTE - BBC - Inghilterra; Classica Lirica

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Making a good case for Rienzi 7 Aug 2013
By Keris Nine TOP 500 REVIEWER
Amidst the abundance of Ring cycles being wheeled out this year, the Wagner bicentenary has also provided a good opportunity to revisit and reconsider many of the composer's earliest works. If any of them is likely to be reevaluated as a misunderstood and neglected masterpiece, it's possibly Rienzi with the promise of that wonderful Overture that asserts itself on occasion like a leitmotif throughout the work. If it never quite manages to live up to what we expect of a Wagner opera though, there are nonetheless fascinating hints of the style that would develop in the composer's later music-dramas and this is something that is brought out very skillfully in this 2012 production from the Théâtre du Capitole in Toulouse.

The production here opens with some images during the Overture of the fall of the Berlin Wall as well as other popular uprisings around the world, but there are no other modern references to be found in this production, which settles thereafter for a more generalised non-specific period, but one that has echoes to Wagner's own time. The Overture is all about setting the tone, and this one succeeds in bringing it back closer to the sentiments and intentions of the original work. As fascinating as Philipp Stöltzl's Deutsche Oper production was in relating the work to its historical legacy (most notoriously as Hitler's favourite opera), this production takes it back to Wagner's left-wing leanings and the revolutionary activities on the streets of Dresden that would see him forced into exile for a significant part of his life.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must for opera lovers 10 Sep 2013
By Colin W
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Let me say first of all that I have never seen Rienzi performed live or any other DVD version, so my impressions are cold, so to speak. The opera, along with Wagner's previous two, was later disowned by Wagner as being his apprentice works when he was learning the trade. It has never been performed at the Festspielhaus in Bayreuth although it was the most successful of Wagner's operas in his lifetime. It is very much in the style of Grand Opera, aiming at the Paris Opera audience of the time and is therefore in 5 acts with a ballet, as written. However, because the end result was very long, this production omits the ballet and a pantomime and has a few other cuts. The end result is still quite long (3 hours) but very successful, maintaining the dramatic flow. The style owes a lot to Meyerbeer and Italian opera of the period. However, it does foreshadow his later works, especially the Fliegende Hollander, Tannhauser and Lohengrin, to some extent.
Rienzi is challenging for the three main singers (Rienzi, Irene and Adriano), requiring a heldentenor who can maintain power on stage throughout almost the whole performance.
Although this is very different from the mature Wagner of the later music-dramas it is quite definitely unjustly neglected, perhaps because of Wagner's own opinions. It is stirring from start to finish, melodically strong and really better than quite a few operas which are in the standard repertoire.
At the time of composing, Wagner was 25 and very much under the influence of the socialist/anarchist ideas of Proudhon and Feuerbach. This production takes these ideas as its springboard and emphasises Rienzi's role as a man of the people, opposed to the aristocracy.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars truly awful 9 Jan 2014
By Badger
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This Rienzi should, surely, kill Wagner's poorest opera for good. The overture is, of course, wonderful, but there it ends. The singing is far from good enough, save for the lovely voice of Jennifer O'Loughlin as the Messenger of Peace. Torsten Kerl does his best with a very difficult part, but, with his hard, piercing voice he makes it sound impossibly difficult. It is a part that is clearly beyond his abilities. Other solo parts are no batter; the singing of the chorus is at best adequate and at times, particularly in the lower parts, of indeterminate pitch; the orchestra sound is thin and badly balanced; and as for the set and costumes - words fail me other than to say they are a distracting irrelevance; as is the succession of video clips during the overture. Yet another production team of would-be artists spoiling the work of another who, even in this rather poor work, is far away their superior.

If you want to prove to a friend how awful Wagner can be, this is the recording you need.

Wagner: Rienzi [Blu-ray] [2013] [Region Free]
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Grosser Querschnitt 6 May 2014
Before someone reports me to Amazon, let me point out that "Grosser querschnitt" is German for "highlights" (literally "greater cross-section").

Wagner conceived Rienzi for the Paris Opera, with lots of choruses and ballet music, which the French insisted on.
The actual premiere was in Dresden in 1842.
Rienzi lasted about six hours.

Subsequent performances shortened it considerably.
The original score was lost in a World War II bombing raid.
A roughly two-and-a-half hour version was thought to be all that survived - until the 1970s when musicologists pieced together an additional two hours from surviving fragments.
This was the basis for the BBC's pioneering 4 hour, 40 minute broadcast in 1976, the single most important performance of the opera since 1842.

There are two competing performances on Blu-Ray, both featuring Torsten Kerl in the title role:

2010: 2 hours, 36 minutes = Berlin Opera conducted by Sebastian Lang-Lessing: Wagner: Rienzi [Blu-ray]

2013: 2 hours, 56 minutes = Milan La Scala conducted by Pinchas Steinberg: The Blu-Ray under review.

(actual timings are less due to curtain calls and production credits)

Rienzi was Wagner's most popular opera during his lifetime.
Adolf Hitler may have inadvertently killed Rienzi when word got out that it was his favorite opera.
This seems unfair:
After the war, his valet reported that Hitler's favorite movie was "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs"
yet Snow White seems to have survived unscathed.

Though he lived in Italy in the Fourteenth Century, poor Rienzi has suffered for his supposed Nazi connection.
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