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8 Reviews
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fine casting in timeless production
Updating Baroque opera can often be controversial and there is no question that some silly costumes is going to challenge some traditionalists. It is a highly stylized and timeless production of Monteverdi's ultimate opera. Gods and humans, comic and intensely serious characters are brought together in a sort of Baroque version of Rome. The sets consist of a rotating...
Published 11 months ago by Jorge

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An excellent buy
As a newcomer to early opera, and counter tenors, but this recording was captivating, the final aria was just heavenly. The soprano was both in singing and acting a perfect partner for the counter tenor.
Published 10 months ago by Aubury


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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fine casting in timeless production, 1 Jun. 2014
This review is from: Monteverdi: L'Incoronazione di Poppea [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
Updating Baroque opera can often be controversial and there is no question that some silly costumes is going to challenge some traditionalists. It is a highly stylized and timeless production of Monteverdi's ultimate opera. Gods and humans, comic and intensely serious characters are brought together in a sort of Baroque version of Rome. The sets consist of a rotating centre stage of white and black marble, all pillars and columns, with mirrors at each side of the stage, reflecting the sets. It is a beautiful production, neither traditional naturalistic nor avant-garde provocation. The major weakness is some silly and absurd costumes among the otherwise beautiful, timeless costumes. Lucano and Nerone's duet in praise of Poppea's charms is staged as a homosexual relationship. It is not in the libretto, but the implication that Nerone will be no more loyal to Poppea than he has been to his wife Ottavia certainly fits Nerone, the most unpleasant character in an opera full of dislikable people

Danielle de Niese is an obvious choice to play Poppea, but her singing is not completely outstanding. She reveals a pleasing lightish soprano with a distinctive quick vibrato that can grow edgy under pressure. In style an unwelcome element creeps in, with a croony plaintiveness. Philippe Jaroussky as Nerone is convincing, sweet toned and controlled, pressed only at the very top. Anna Bonitatibus is a splendid Ottavia, very moving. Max Emanuel Cencic is on fine form as Poppea's former lover, Ottone. His poetic lament singing is superb, and his knack for portraying explosive vengefulness does not preclude intelligent musicality. The noble Seneca of Antonio Abete clearly comes across as the moral hero of the opera. Ana Quintans is a dream Drusilla. William Christie conducts Les Arts Florissants in playing that is at once historically informed and always alive.

The image quality is clear, fine for Standard Definition. A disappointment is the absence of any informative printed material.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At last a production that does this opera justice, 22 May 2014
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This review is from: Monteverdi: L'Incoronazione di Poppea [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
A superb performance from Christie and the singers, catching the seriousness, the comedy and the breathtaking sensuality of Monteverdi's music. It is such a relief to have a production that does not irritate with intrusive 'stage business'. Even more of a relief that this very great opera has not been bowdlerised and twisted by an arrogant and insensitive director imposing his/her own pointless 'concept' on it. (I remember with distaste a frightful David Alden production that treated it throughout as a 'black comedy'.)
The production is not perfect but the flaws are minor. Why is Jaroussky, as Nero, given black and white make-up a la Vampire? Presumably to signal that he is a sinister character. But that is unnecessary since Monteverdi has written this into the music and Jaroussky is well able to bring this out in his performance. Why is Cupid sung by a grown woman, dressed as such? This jars since s/he is addressed as a boy late in the opera.
All in all, though, this is a breathtaking performance. Buy it and watch it.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Marvellous Monteverdi!, 7 Feb. 2013
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This review is from: Monteverdi: L'Incoronazione di Poppea [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
Many years ago, I attended a study day on 'Poppea' at the British Museum. It was a wonderful day, ending with a concert performance amid the Elgin Marbles. I have loved the opera since then, and have two CD versions amongst my collection. With this DVD, the glorious Philippe Jaroussky and Daniele De Niese have rekindled my love for the work; their performances are truly superb. But not only PJ and DdN, the wonderful Max Emanuel Cencic, Anna Bonitatibus and all the singers are a joy. Buy without hesitation, if only for the final, utterly glorious, duet between Nerone and Poppea.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Nero and Poppea in silver suits, 8 April 2014
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This review is from: Monteverdi: L'Incoronazione di Poppea [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
It's an excellent recording. I give it 4 stars because I much prefer it when the cast dress as they would in the period. I'm not a big fan of over-smart costume designers and directors who interfere with history....like the way Wagners Ring is consistently ruined by idiots introducing butchers and such rot
Apart from that the opera is wonderful. Better listened to :-)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An excellent buy, 23 July 2014
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This review is from: Monteverdi: L'Incoronazione di Poppea [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
As a newcomer to early opera, and counter tenors, but this recording was captivating, the final aria was just heavenly. The soprano was both in singing and acting a perfect partner for the counter tenor.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enigmatic, 17 Mar. 2013
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This review is from: Monteverdi: L'Incoronazione di Poppea [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
This is the opera that launched all operas. Monteverdi has hit the nail on its head. So much passion and feeling coming out of these arias, especially the final one, 'Pur Ti Miro.' Phillipe Jaroussky is easily the finest counter tenor today, and he is superbly accompanied by Danielle de Niese.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Long, ancient and highly entertaining., 4 Jun. 2013
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M. Taplin "mikekoi" (Weston-super-Mare, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Monteverdi: L'Incoronazione di Poppea [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
Poppea, Drusilla, Nero, Seneca and all the cast, padticularly Poppea's nurse give a great performance.
Delightful to the eye as well as the ear. Terrific very watchable.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 31 Oct. 2012
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This review is from: Monteverdi: L'Incoronazione di Poppea [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
excellent
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Monteverdi: L'Incoronazione di Poppea [DVD] [2012]
Monteverdi: L'Incoronazione di Poppea [DVD] [2012] by William Christie/Philippe Jaroussky/Danielle de Niese/Anna Bonitatibus/Max Emanuel Cencic/Les Arts Florissants (DVD - 2012)
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