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on 20 May 2006
Having owned this opera on video for years then purchased the new DVD, I was curious to see if I preferred the earlier Met version. I agree Scotto is a wonderful actress but I feel Domingo is more committed to the role in this Covent Garden version. Also the chemistry he and Te Kanawa have together surpasses that with Scotto at the Met. They just seem more of a devoted couple. The singing in both is glorious but Domingo looks younger ,more like the student, in the Cov Gdn version in spite of being older! I think its the hair style and he is slimmer in 1983, anyway he looks more the part. I also feel the Gotz Friedrich staging is more attractive than that at the Met and Thomas Allen as Lescaut clinches it for me, as he is such a fine actor and has great fun with this role. If you can only buy one I'd say, get this one.
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on 22 November 2007
What chemistry these two have on stage. I just cant stop watching them! Domingo is in fine voice as is Te Kanawa. Act 4 is a joy to behold, has me in tears all the time. This definitely wins over the Met production which to me is overacted. I love scotto as a singer(beautiful to listen to) but her acting leaves a lot to be desired. I found myself cringing! Domingo overacts as well here. Domingo really feeds off his partners and here is a perfect example.

Wheras in the Covent Garden production both actors are perfectly comfortable with each other. The acting is superb leaving the singing to convey in glorious tones much of the emotion. Beautiful. The things that domingo can do with his voice are amazing when he is in this sort of form and te kanawa responds in kind.

This is the perfect Christmas present to reward yourself with. Sit back relax and enjoy!
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on 9 October 2003
I was looking forward for this release since a long time.I saw it the first time on video and was overwhelmed by this passionate performance. Unfortunally the tape broke down. Now on DVD I hope it will last forever to enjoy it for many years.
Performance is outstanding, beautifull singing.
Video quallity is good
Sound is satisfying(AC3 2ch )It is a pitty that no LPCM track is included it would for sure improve the sound quallity!!
However this is a must for all opera lovers. Do not hesitate, buy it now it is available.
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on 29 November 2012
I originally had this work on tape but during moving house five years ago it got lost in transit so I brought this replacement dvd.What a wonderful performance,the second act is pure magic,Domingo and Kiri Te Kanawa were at their peak when this recording was made and the chemistry between them is electric.I very much doubt if this performance can be bettered.
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on 15 February 2004
This 'Manon Lescaut' has a lot to speak on its behalf, but in my view it fails to reach the height, not to say the urgency, of the Met production from a couple of years earlier (luckily also out on DVD). Sinopoli, and a lot of people will disagree with me vehemently, is not a Puccinian conductor, the sheen he lends to the music is confectionary rather than impassioned, and his sense of rubato not very Italian. Götz Friedrich's production seems stale and one-dimensional when revisited today, but obviously fans will want to sample Kiri Te Kanawa's Manon, one of her more convincing portraits in the Italian repertoire, and Domingo is in glorious, vocally resplendent form, although I marginally prefer him in the Met version mentioned above.
A safe buy, absolutely, but in this the best of all worlds we have options. I opt for James Levine, Metropolitan, Domingo and Renata Scotto.
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on 26 April 2014
This was my first exposure to Manon Lescaut and now I've seen a live production too. I can't get on with the way the story jumps about and still haven't figured out why Manon was exiled. The brother is pretty confusing as a character too.

As for the performance, I enjoyed Domingo but Te Kanawa was pretty unconvincing for me. I'm pretty new to opera so don't take this as a musical judgement, rather a dramatic one!
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on 31 January 2013
I bought this DVD for my mother (90) and we watched it together. She had a recording of this Opera and she was 'blown away' at the sight of it. At the end of the performance Domingo is so deeply into his character that he has to struggle to come out of it for the cutain call.
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on 17 June 2013
A soaring performance of a lovely opera by Domingo and Kiri, admirably supported by the more minor roles. And Manon's brother and Geronte wonderfully portrayed. I can't stop watching it.
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on 29 June 2015
Wonderful singing from Domingo. Disappointing performance from my favourite soprano, Kiri. Some roles suit some performers; this one does not suit her.
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on 21 March 2015
Very good and Dame Kiri sang with feeling. Domingo would have been in his prime and was great. Was a good Manon and pleased I bought it.
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