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Glazunov: Raymonda [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

4.3 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Region 1 encoding. (This DVD will not play on most DVD players sold in the UK [Region 2]. This item requires a region specific or multi-region DVD player and compatible TV. More about DVD formats)
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£16.86 Only 11 left in stock. Dispatched from and sold by RAREWAVES USA.

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Product details

  • Format: NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: Unrated (US MPAA rating. See details.)
  • Studio: ja
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0006A9HUS
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 186,184 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

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Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

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This is a live recording made at the Bolshoi Theatre, probably in the mid-1980s. It is a most enjoyable DVD of the masterpiece set in medieval times. The Bolshoi Ballet's vast resources are used for this production by Grigorovich, based on Petipa's original of 1898. The action takes place in a sober Gothic stone building, which looks just right for the period in which the work is set.

Ludmila Semenyaka, a St. Petersburg-trained ballerina with an exquisite classic style, is marvellous in the title role of Raymonda, a young noblewoman. Her dancing is so fluid and lyrical, and both her variations (solo dances) and pas de deux are flawless. She possesses remarkable musicality, performing phrases of flowing movement that respond to the music.

Irek Mukhamedov is a virile and sensitive Jean de Brienne, a nobleman who goes away on a Crusade. He is an excellent partner in pas de deux. The pas de deux in Entre-Act in Act I (before de Brienne's departure) is danced with real passion and ardour. The pas de deux in the Dream Scene in the same Act (with violin solo accompaniment) is truly sublime. These dancers are both in their prime.

The character role of Abderakhman - a Saracen who first seeks the hand of Raymonda and then tries to abduct her - is danced and mimed very convincingly by Gedeminas Taranda. The supporting soloists and the corps de ballet are exemplary. The justly-celebrated Hungarian divertissements in the wedding scene in Act 3 are beautifully done.

There is frequent and enthusiastic applause from the excited balletomanes, this being a live performance. Semenyaka brings down the house when she dances the Hungarian variation (with piano accompaniment) in Act 3.
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This is wonderful dancing a real bolshoi A1 performance and well worth seeing - forget the poor quality transfer and somewhat eratic sound - the dancing makes you forgive these problems - I would have given it 5 stars but for the transfer problems and the fact that when the conductor appears on the stage at the end it is in fact not Algis Zhuraitis and despite endless enquiries I have not been able to find out who is is - but no matter the performance is great
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I agree with other reviewers about the excellence of the dancing and the interpretation, but I want to warn buyers that the recording quality is very poor indeed. The figures are very blurred, and it's very difficult to get more than an idea of their features. I have to say I was disappointed. This version includes the 'white lady' vision scene, vey movingly, whereas other versions, such as the Kirov DVD with Kolpakova, show a portrait of Jean de Brienne coming alive in Raymonda's dream. One for fans of Russian ballet.
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Well danced!
Only the image is not so clear, perhaps from a VHS
But in all, all dancers do well in it. Semenyaka looks and dances like a princess!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars 12 reviews
34 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The first Raymonda to see 16 Jan. 2009
By Eric Henwood-Greer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Raymonda is a ballet that seems to divide fans--it's actually my favorite of the 1800s full length ballets after Sleeping Beauty, but I get why less experienced ballet fans might find its slight stroy, emphasis on dance, a bit boring. I find it enthralling.

Out of the three DVDs of Raymonda out so far (this, another Bolshoi one with about 20 minutes cut from two years later and a classic Kirov performance from 1980) this is probably the place to start, although the Kirov has a lot to recommend it as well. Grigorovich's staging is largely exquisite although I don't like some of the changes made to the original (which he'd later elaborate on--currently the Bolshoi cuts the White Lady completely when they perform Raymonda). What really makes this release preferable to the other Bolshoi recording is the cast--which is just a little bit better, with the exception of Ludmila Semenyaka who is a LOT better than the Raymonda on the other release, Bessmertnova who was a decent talent but too old and miscast in the role. Semenyaka is divine as Raymonda--which is good because the role seems to have more solos than any other ballerina role in the classical repertoire.

Glazunov's music likewise tends to divide people, but I think it's the greatest 1800s ballet score after Tchaikovsky--it may take a few more listens but its gorgeous medieaval themes will sink into your head. This DVD isn't perfect--the videotape source shows its age, the lighting isn't idea for filming in some dark scenes, and the sound lacks some oomps (and even briefly fades in and out for a minute in Act III, due to degraded video source), but we should be happy for what we have especially of this oft negelected ballet. Highly recommended.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's Flawed but at Thirty Years it is still the Best! 22 Jan. 2013
By Dr. John W. Rippon - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Poor "Raymonda" since it creation in 1898 it has been cut and sliced and hacked and added to and revised and revised again. I have viewed about a dozen of them and have recordings of about a half dozen. I've just finished reviewing the new 2011 version of the La Scala Opera ballet. It purports to be a recreation of the original by Marius Petipa with the music of Aleksandr Glazunov. It does give you the complete story, thin though it is. But at least you can understand what is happening and why. The version here presented is from thirty years ago. It is revised by choreographer Yuri Grigorovich after the original of Petipa and has been quite improved I think. It runs smoother and the ensembles are more exciting to watch and on the whole it is much more dramatic. That is a great plus. The other great thing in this recodring are the three principals -the men are excellent in their roles and Ludmila as Raymonda is superb. Her dancing is so effortless - she floats, she glides, she twirls all without any sign of stress. She really is great. I have seen many other artist in person and on recording but she remains for me the best. The major drawback of this recording is that the story line, thin as it is, is not here. You have to know it beforehand otherwise you are at a complete loss. Well so be it. This recording is still my favorite.
38 of 47 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful but... 8 Feb. 2005
By tulip - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD
I bought this DVD after I watched Rudolf Nureyev's Raymonda documentary by Paris Opera Ballet since this is the only DVD available for the entire Raymonda performance. It is a beautiful ballet and the Russian dancers' turns are very fast. The part that I was disapointed was Abderarakhman. I am not talking about the dancer, he is really good, but it does not have the breath-taking choreography like the one I saw in Nureyev's version. Other than that it is a very good DVD to watch, except I had to fast forward everytime when there was a curtain call, it was long and almost everytime when a solorist finishes a variation. It was like watching a mini series of many variations instead of one whole ballet story. I am probably biased for Paris Opera Ballet so my feedback may not be fair. If I did not see Nureyev's documentary, this would have been one of my favorite ballet. It is beautiful.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyed it, with reservations 15 Nov. 2014
By glo - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
These dancers are superb. The production is "grand". I bought this dvd because I wanted to see a full version of this ballet, only having seen excerpts before. I enjoyed watching it, but I only gave it 4 stars instead of 5 because (1) I have no other reference to compare it to, and (2) although I loved some scenes and some of the choreography, I thought some sections were just not interesting enough. I found myself thinking that the bolshoi stage is just too large and the dancers too spread out at times. As others have said, It would be nice to see the full version of this ballet done more often, as the ballet is a gem. It's definitely worth while seeing.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful ballet. Wonderful glorious music and superb dancing 29 Aug. 2014
By Balletomane - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Beautiful ballet. Wonderful glorious music and superb dancing! It is the Bolshoi, so I expected it to be a marvelous feast for the eyes and ears, and it was. This ballet is a lovely addition to my collection. I cannot say enough about the prima ballerina, the lead male dancer, and the beautiful corps de ballet. They were magnificent!
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