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The Enchanted Island [DVD] [2012] [NTSC]
The Enchanted Island [DVD] [2012] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ William Christie
Offered by RAREWAVES
Price: £11.74

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Something of a tour de force in constructing an opera never made., 24 Nov 2012
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The casting superb, fine scenic effects and a witty new written libretto. Maybe the words too plenty.
As listener it have been helpfull with a list of numbers with composer attached.
I have seen DiDonato singing barockopera before and have found here somewhat overspeeded.
It was delightfull to see her both expressive and dignefied. Domingo appears as Netun with both irony and
pondus. And now we long for the Met to play an original Vivaldi performance.


The Canterbury Tales (DVD + Blu-ray)
The Canterbury Tales (DVD + Blu-ray)
Dvd ~ Pier Paolo Pasolini
Price: £18.43

4.0 out of 5 stars A strange and very personal approach to the Middle Age, 24 Nov 2012
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Pasolini are a strange personality among the great italian filmmakers. Communist, homosexual and christian.
Mostly criticised for his approach to this english shortstories about live in the middle age, I think, you have
to vieuw this picture in the context of Pasolini's criticism of his own time and romantic and admittedly unrealistic
approach to the Middle Age. As a stranger in the world he lived in, he had to fine consolation in the past. A past
where he could find hope for the future. Whether you agree are not, Pasolini instructs his players to enjoy the
pleasures of live in a careless childish way. But he knows og shows, that there have allways been snakes and devils
in the Gardens of Eden. His ways of punishment of the evil in the picture are childish and crude, so the picture
is not "a nice cup of tea". But it is not massacre on massacre, as we nowaday are used to look at in the movies and TV.


Verdi: Un Giorno Di Regno (Pizzi 2010) (Loconsolo/ Porta/ Antonacci/ Orchestra e Coro del Teatro Regio di Parma/ Donato Renzetti/ Luigi Pizzi) (C Major: 720208) [DVD] [NTSC] [2012]
Verdi: Un Giorno Di Regno (Pizzi 2010) (Loconsolo/ Porta/ Antonacci/ Orchestra e Coro del Teatro Regio di Parma/ Donato Renzetti/ Luigi Pizzi) (C Major: 720208) [DVD] [NTSC] [2012]
Dvd ~ Loconsolo
Offered by skyvo-direct
Price: £29.09

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Italian vitality in rare performance., 24 Nov 2012
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Preparing the year 2013, the 200 year birthday of Verdi (and Wagner by the way) the Opera in Parma are in
the process of recording a complete cycle of Verdi operas on DVD. One of the candidats to the the title of most
unknown work by the great master is Un Giorne Di Regno. The audience and the general public have for years
been told, that Verdi's last opera Falstaff is unique, because it is his only comic opera. Just for the sake of correcting
a common believe Un Regno its worth while. Here we have a rather Rossini-like intrigue opera with happy end
for not only the two couples in love but for all the involved. The cast with the wellknown italian soprano Antonacci
showing here fine voice plays with energy and vitality. If it is not Verdi at his best, it is certainly italian ensemble opera at is best.


Betrothal In A Monastery: Mariinsky Theatre, St Petersburg [DVD] [2005]
Betrothal In A Monastery: Mariinsky Theatre, St Petersburg [DVD] [2005]
Dvd ~ Alexander Gergalov
Price: £12.65

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Netrebko's second great performance in russian opera., 24 Nov 2012
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Anna Netrebko have had the status in little over a decade of beeing the maybe greatest soprano in the world. For the
believers of this statement this Prokofiev opera is a must. Gergiev and the orchestra gives his best, there
are plenty of ballet action and great costumes in original style. The time and place, early spanish barock,
are staged as the poet Sheridan, would have wished it. Netrebko and here lover are the most beautifull match,
and the old people, who only thinks in money and matchmaking becomes their lesson.
So this is a comedy, as a comedy should be. The strange thing is, that this is not like Prokofiev at all.
The notes do not tell all the circumstances behind the composers choice. As a matter of fact he was both
in love with new young bride and really exhorsted by having Stalin leaning on his shoulder.


Pergolesi: Il Prigionier/ Serva Padrona (Antonio Lozano/ Marina Rodríguez Cusí/ Marina de Liso/ Accademia Barocca de I Virtuosi Italiani/ Corrado Rovaris/ Henning Brockhaus) (Arthaus: 101654) [DVD] [2012] [NTSC]
Pergolesi: Il Prigionier/ Serva Padrona (Antonio Lozano/ Marina Rodríguez Cusí/ Marina de Liso/ Accademia Barocca de I Virtuosi Italiani/ Corrado Rovaris/ Henning Brockhaus) (Arthaus: 101654) [DVD] [2012] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Antonio Lozano
Price: £29.99

1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A guide to the original context of La Serva Padrona., 24 Nov 2012
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I have given this DVD only 4 stars because of the separation of Il Prigonier and La Serva Padrona on different discs.
It would have been in the composers spirit to hold on of the idea of a comic intermezzo in twoo parts.
A strange, but when you get used to it, meaningful idea of the director are the cocktaildresses of the singers,
whether they are woman or men (Il Prigonier).
Rather unusual the plot is placed in Norway, without any litterary or historical source. As a matter of fact the result
is not so childish, as one could expect. The intrigues and political interests from Sweden and Denmark in the
problem, who has to be the king of Norway, is not that far from historical facts. Only is the unbloody solution rather far
from reality in nothern Europe. But as the lover of Italian opera knows, you do'nt kill kings or other rulers in italian
opera.
The two protagonist in La Serva Padrona gives a charming performance in an unusual circussetting. The cunning
young lady is played by a very young and good looking italian singer, who at this moment is making here way from
minor roles to the more demanding repertoire.


Iolanta/ Persephone (Ekaterina Scherbachenko/ Alexej Markov/ Madrid Symphony Orchestra and Chorus/ Teodor Currentzis/ Peter Sellars) (Teatro Real: TR97011DVD) [NTSC] [2012]
Iolanta/ Persephone (Ekaterina Scherbachenko/ Alexej Markov/ Madrid Symphony Orchestra and Chorus/ Teodor Currentzis/ Peter Sellars) (Teatro Real: TR97011DVD) [NTSC] [2012]
Dvd ~ Ekaterina Scherbachenko
Offered by Fulfillment Express
Price: £15.30

2 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A rare combination of christian and antique heritage set in music by two great composers, 24 Nov 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Are you a fan of the director Peter Sellars, this is a new triumph.
The Tchaikovsky opera Iolanta (his last) based on a danish litterary source from
the so called Golden Age, explaines the Hans Christian Andersen like naive view of christianity.
I suspect this have a special appeal to Tchaikovsky, and was helping to make way to the combination
of simplicity and subtility in both word and music.
I a way I am tempted to see this swansong opera as Tchaikovsky's Parsifal. The simple fool finding, in this
case, here way to the highest step of knowledge.
And as a more sophisticated - and modern - encore, you get Stravinsky! A melodrama I had no knowlidge of
before seeing it in this DVD.


Verdi: Luisa Miller [DVD] [2009] [NTSC]
Verdi: Luisa Miller [DVD] [2009] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Rachele Stanisci
Price: £27.17

1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A tribute to understanding of the mature Verdi, 3 Nov 2011
Luisa Miller is known for a great tenoraria, Luciano Pavarotti often indcluded in his recitals. The hero of the opera played by Francesco Demura shows his fine voice an his dispair of a love corrupted by circumstances in his version of the aria. Maybe of special interest is, that this opera demonstrates something of the mature Verdi's "leitmotive": the affection between a father (a retired soldier) and his daughter, commoners in conflict with a corrupt aristocrasy (a story told with greater concentration and more musical highlights in Rigoletto) - and a caracter, called "Wurm", who is the factotum (a study so to tell for the future Jago in Othello) of the Count, father of the lover of Luisa. The story gets rather complicated, but finds ist grim ending with the dead of the lovers by poison and the respective fathers left in grief. The music has the typical Verdi energy, interrupted by folkloristic scenes with space for the choir. The duets in particular are tuneful and emotional highlights and Rachele Stanisci and Alberto Gazale more than matches the voice of Demura. As a minor complaint, one have to watch out for the Bongiovanni label. The picture format is noted as 16:9, but look on my DVD much more like 4:3.


Darius Milhaud - Christophe Colomb - Theatre Imperial de Compiegne [DVD]
Darius Milhaud - Christophe Colomb - Theatre Imperial de Compiegne [DVD]
Dvd ~ Pierre Jourdan
Price: £15.99

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A new experience of french opera, 22 Aug 2011
Theatre Imperial de Compiegne under the direction of Pierre Jourdan has produced a number of french operas, practically unknown outside France. The composer Milhaud is recognised as one of the leading members of the group named "les six". But among them it is Poulenc and Honegger who has made themselfe a name as 20th century vocal composers. That Milhaud composed operas made me curious. The opera Christophe Colomb is based on a fine libretto of Paul Claudel and tells the complicated story of the background, the costs he had to pay, the polical an clerical obstacles, culminating in the voyage itself. In a very modern way both the young and the old adventurer is presented. The music of Milhaud knit the plot together in a admirable way. The musical style lays somwhere in the middle of his early jazz-and latininspired period and his late modenism. The singerensemble gives an enthuastic performance and the title role played by Laurent Naouri shows his considerable skill both as an actor and as a singer. A setback is, that i have been unable of finding subtitles in other languages than french.


Wagner: Tannhauser [DVD] [2009]
Wagner: Tannhauser [DVD] [2009]
Dvd ~ Nikolaus Lehnhoff
Price: £29.99

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great singing performance, 21 Aug 2011
A cast nearly as ideal as can imagined, fine orchestra and superb chorus make this Baden-Baden Festspiel performance from 2008 the best on the market, so far as I know. As a scandinavian I especially notice Camilla Nylund as Elisabeth and Stephen Milling as the Landgraf for showing all their abilitys among Wagner stars as Waltraud Meier, Robert Gambill and Roman Trekel. Tannhaüser became the international breakthrough of Wagner, and not ony the music but also the story, have none of the disturbing og intriguing elements, one finds in his later works. It seems to me a tale of redemption for an outcast living in a medieval society (and too a considerable degree in 19th century "victorian" society). In the central scene, the songcontest (where the director as an rather distracting joke places a microphone on the scene - anyway Lehnhaus, the director must be credited for not modernising the play) Tannhaüser grows seek and tired of the competitors praising of love as an only spiritual phenonomen, and sings his praise of erotic pleasure. The horrofied responce is rather witty from the hand of Wagner, but dead serious for the fate of Tannhaüser.
In this context it seems somewhat strange, the way the Venusberg scene at the start of the opera is presented. The ballet is a performance of doll-like figures wraped in plastic. For me this place of sexual delights seemed transformed to a cave, with Frau Venus as the spider in center of her victims. So no wonder Tannhaüser wants to escape! With this minor personal reservation the production is to be holeheartedly recomented.


Firebird/ Les Noces [DVD] [2010] [NTSC]
Firebird/ Les Noces [DVD] [2010] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Jonathan Cope
Price: £24.99

4.0 out of 5 stars A performance full of energy and melody., 8 July 2011
The Firebird was the breaking news in La Ballet Russe for Stravinsky. The Ballet of Covent Garden tells the very russian fairytale story in a straightforward way, with room for suspence and wonder. Leanne Benjamin is appealing innocent, both shy and determinated. Ivan and the bewitched Tsarevna are noble figures but more static. This last tendency is ruling the performance of Les Noces. The primitivism of the music in my view need a counterpoint of a more ecstatic dancing performance. The scenography and costumes on the other hand is a delight. Two an a half stars for The Firebird and one and a half star for Les Noces. The orchestra performs in both ballets with great force and melodic nerve.


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