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Waldteufel (UK)

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Opera Nights
Opera Nights
by Ernest Newman
Edition: Hardcover

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Indispensible, 12 Feb. 2013
This review is from: Opera Nights (Hardcover)
Simply one of the two best books on individual operas ever written (the other being More Opera Nights)by the author of Wagner Nights and The Life of Richard Wagner. All must haves for every opera lover.


Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 3, Bagatelles op. 126 Nos. 1, 4 & 6, Piano Sonata No. 29 'Hammerklavier'
Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 3, Bagatelles op. 126 Nos. 1, 4 & 6, Piano Sonata No. 29 'Hammerklavier'
Price: £11.65

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitive, 29 Jan. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The legendary Richter giving a transcendental performance caught in superb BBC sound. Whatever other Hammerklavier you have this demands to be in your collection.


Liszt: Années de Pèlerinage
Liszt: Années de Pèlerinage
Price: £36.93

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unmissable, 3 Dec. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
A stunning new pianist on the scene. Not only an outstanding virtuoso but also a refined and poetic player. This is superb Liszt playing in every sense. Highly recommended.


Verdi: La Traviata [DVD] [2012]
Verdi: La Traviata [DVD] [2012]
Dvd ~ Natalie Dessay/Charles Castronovo/Ludovic Tezier/Louis Langree/Jean-Francois Sivadier
Price: £11.48

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A challenging rethink, 19 Sept. 2012
One of the most powerful Traviatas around. Unconventional yes, but unlike the recent Salzburg/Met prodction, incredibly moving. It might take two or three viewings to get to the bottom of the producer's concept but well worth the trouble as repeated viewings enhance the quality of the whole thing. The entire cast - down to the smallest roles - is admirable. The scene between Violetta and Germont heartrending and wonderfully sung. The very end is shattering - not un til the final bar do you know what the denoument will be. Having seen this at Aix in 2011 and being bowled over by it I wasn't sure how it would fare on DVD but it completely confirms my first impressions. I can be equally enthralled by a great 'traditional' Traviata, e.g. the Gheorgiou/Solti Covent Garden one but that doesn't mean that a powerfully thought through production like this cannot be equally mesmerising. It just helps to prove that Traviata still has the power to speak to us eloquently in the 21st century as much as in times past.


Wagner's Tannhauser: Stig Anderson / Irene Theorin / Royal Danish Opera [DVD] [2011] [NTSC]
Wagner's Tannhauser: Stig Anderson / Irene Theorin / Royal Danish Opera [DVD] [2011] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Wagner
Price: £24.82

10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Frightful, 22 April 2012
This is a simply hideous rewrite of the opera by the egomaniac director who imagines his 'story' is better than the original. It becoimes doubly absurd when the libretto remains unchanged. It is visually miscast, only adequately (and less) sung, horrid to look at. For a new issue the sound quality is not top rate. The Met and Bayreuth productions are more satisfying and far better sung and conducted and recorded despite their age. The Met production is traditional in the best sense; the Friedrich production is far more interesting and the whole cast is of a very high standard. Wenkoff sings an outstanding Tannhauser and Jones is heartbreaking as Elisabeth.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 9, 2015 9:36 PM GMT


Goddards Long Term Silver Cloth
Goddards Long Term Silver Cloth
Offered by Curated-UK Ltd
Price: £2.54

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, 11 Mar. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
A very handy and convenient product. Ideal for the job in hand. Never be without one. A first class item.


Waldteufel: Famous Waltzes
Waldteufel: Famous Waltzes
Price: £7.81

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely, 16 Dec. 2011
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These lovely waltzes make a delightful alternative to J.Strauss & Co. Endlessly tuneful - they give much pleasure. Excellent performances and recording.


Puccini: La Fanciulla Del West: Nederlandse Opera 2009 [DVD] [2010] [NTSC]
Puccini: La Fanciulla Del West: Nederlandse Opera 2009 [DVD] [2010] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Eva-Maria Westbroek
Price: £20.38

10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Puccini belittled, 18 April 2011
I think this is one of Puccini's greatest works. He never surpassed the orchestral contribution which is virtually through-composed with the voices skilfully worked into the texture. The three principal roles are superbly written and rewarding for singers able to do justice to them and the minor roles are amazingly well delineated. The plot is specifically set in the California goldrush of 1849 and there are countless references in the text to the period, who the characters are and why they are there, and despite one or two solecisms (after all it was written by Italians not Americans) the libretto rings true and powerfully. Puccini has clothed all this in a thoroughly advanced idiom (compared with, say, Boheme) yet it is full of wonderfully memorable melody and makes many references to the period it is set in and the time it was written e.g. in the many dance rhythms.
So why only 3 stars? Well they are for the musical performance which is exemplary (despite a couple of irritating and unecessary brief cuts - 2 in the 1st act) and splendidly conducted. While I've nothing against modern reinterpretations of the operatic repertoire if they are sincerely and respectfully carried out (I've seen other modern versions of this opera) in this case the new interpretaion is nothing more than a bizarre send-up in the most hideous and tasteless setting it is possible to imagine. As not a word of the libretto has been changed what we see is totally absurd and reduces the drama to sentimental soap-opera slush - and this opera is anything but! All this detracts so strongly from the opera itself that it is difficult to contain one's anger at such a directorial put-down of a master opera composer's work. I would suggest that the director despises this opera and should never have agreed to do it.
Following its initial success La Fanciulla suffered years of neglect and snobbish indifference but starting, I would suggest, with the great 1958 recording with Tebaldi and Del Monaco this opera's fortunes have thrived and it has been re-evaluated as among Puccini's finest creations. The best DVD is still the classic Covent Garden production - traditional it's true - but in the very best sense. For an intelligent modern reinterpretation we still have to wait. Unfortunately this Amsterdam version is a non-starter.


Peter Tchaikovsky - The Enchantress [DVD] [2010]
Peter Tchaikovsky - The Enchantress [DVD] [2010]
Dvd ~ Tchaikovsky
Price: £24.99

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Just passable, 27 Feb. 2011
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This opera is great rarity and this is its only DVD version. The principal singers are quite good - the leading soprano and baritone rather more than that - and the orchestra is fine taking consideration of the age and the less than hifi sound. BUT - the production is amateurish in the extreme, village hall scenery and embarrassing 'acting' from the chorus - only slightly better from the principals. A huge and important cut is made in the 4th act which undermines the plotting. Tchaikovsky thought highly of this opera but this production must have made him spin in his grave. So only for Tchaikovsky afficionados. Hopefully the Maryinsky which has a production in its repertory will get round to recording it. This set is just a stopgap.


Wagner: Rienzi (Rienzi Der Letzte Der Tribunen: Deutsche Oper Berlin 2010) [DVD] [NTSC]
Wagner: Rienzi (Rienzi Der Letzte Der Tribunen: Deutsche Oper Berlin 2010) [DVD] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Torsten Kerl
Price: £29.88

9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not Rienzi, 23 Feb. 2011
The fact that Hitler liked this opera does not make it an opera about Hitler and the nazis or Mussolini and his fascists. This is a director's 'take' on the opera changing the motivation and actions of the principals completely. As such it is a travesty though it is well sung, played and acted. But don't believe this is Wagner's Rienzi - you only have to read the libretto to see how falsely it represents the drama.
There is a wonderful absolutely complete (not 9 hours) version of the opera on cd conducted by Sir Edward Downes originally broadcast by the BBC in 1976 - well worth seeking out.


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