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Spontini: La Fuga In Maschera [Viruoosi Italiani, Ruth Rosique, Caterina Di Tonho] [DVD] [2014] [NTSC]

4.6 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Viruoosi Italiani, Ruth Rosique, Caterina Di Tonho, Alessandra Marianelli, Clemente Dalotti
  • Format: Classical, Colour, DVD-Video, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, German, French, Italian
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: Exempt
  • Studio: Euroarts
  • DVD Release Date: 28 July 2014
  • Run Time: 145 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 150,776 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Gaspare Spontini

Libretto by Giuseppe Palomba
I Virtuosi Italiani
Conducted by Corrado Rovaris

"a firework of humor and merry entertainment" (Das Opernglas).

  • Once known for his stately grand operas Gaspare Spontini posthumously surprised posterity with a light-hearted "commedia per musica" that was found at an antiquarian book dealer in England in 2006 and performed for the first time since 1800 at the Festival Pergolesi e Spontini in Jesi, Italy.
  • With its motoric ensembles, intensifying rhythmic repetitions, and imaginative play with word fragments, La fuga in maschera anticipates Rossini at his best.
  • Known for their historically informed performances, I Virtuosi Italiani is considered as "one of the most dynamic and able-bodied ensembles in the international musical world" (Milano Finanza).
  • Corrado Rovaris and I Virtuosi Italiani play with immense verve and joy.
  • Convincing in their roles as young lovers are the young singers who are also "masters in the ancient art of commedia dell'arte" (la Repubblica) Ruth Rosique, Caterina Di Tonno, Alessandra Marianelli, Clemente Paliotti, Filippo Morace, Alessandro Spina and Dionigi D'Ostuni.
Picture format DVD: NTSC - 16:9
Sound format DVD: PCM Stereo, Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS 5.1
Region code: 0 (worldwide)
Subtitles: English, German, French, Italian
Booklet notes: English, German, French
Running time: 145 mins
German FSK: 0

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

By H. A. Weedon TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 30 Nov. 2014
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
I must say that I thoroughly enjoyed this production of La Fuga in Maschera by the Italian composer Gaspare Spontini (1774-1851). Lost for over 200 years, this work was only rediscovered in 2007. I'm so pleased that it was and that its sheer joie de vivre silliness can again be enjoyed by those of us still unsophisticated enough to enjoy the parodying of the daftness of human emotional entanglements. This work is very much a Rabbi Burns 'O wad some power the gifty gee us to see oursel's as others see us' venture, teaching us that, if only we could all learn to laugh at ourselves more often, the world would be a much better place.

Although there are no outstanding, set piece arias in the work, the music and singing throughout are inspiringly delightful. Top grade tragic operas certainly have their place, but opera is a versatile genre expressible in a vast variety of ways and this is just one of them. The ridiculous buffoonery of this work is the best antidote to all the religion-inspired violence and suffering we see in the world around us. If more people would stop being so serious all the time it would prevent more of us from degrading ourselves into violence. This production made me feel so happy and pleased and thinking that it's not so far removed from my own long experience of life.

The actor-singers are all well chosen for their parts and DVD recording is of the highest quality in both sound and picture focus. The simple staging is just right for this kind of work and the costumes fit in with general buffoonery. My view has always been that over-staging can mar a production to an extent that's unachievable with under-staging and this production is a superb example of how not to ruin a work with stage clutter.
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Format: DVD
. My exposure to this composer is extremely limited (Vestale is all I have heard).La Fuga in Maschera is a gem, and a superb performance. It was only discovered in 2006 – only one aria and the libretto from it existed until then. It turned up at a London auction and the city of Maiolata Spontini near Ancona and not far from Perugia, Spontini’s birthplace, purchased it. This performance, the first since its unsuccessful premiere was the result. Spontini was younger than Beethoven by only 4 years and the premiere of this opera was in 1800, but the music is much closer to, and could be mistaken for, Rossini. Much of it is as good as lesser Rossini, and features some really brilliant ensembles, redolent of Cenerentola, and performed with great virtuosity by this cast, together with some fine arias. Like so many lesser composers of the times, Spontini was apt all too often to repeat each phrase of music, sometimes repeating it 3-4 times!. I know Mozart did it on occasion, but he knew better what would work, whereas Spontini and many others, for example the Mannheim composers, didn’t. There is also a lovely Act 2 aria with harp. I wonder if Rossini noted it and continued the convention? This production is very good – colourful and only one or two minor anachronisms. Indeed, you could say the setting is neutral with regard to period. The main production fault is the use of three men who act as mute spectators of the comedy and drama. It would have taken as many rehearsals of their manufactured roles as for the singers! However, it is possible the Director used them to minimise the static nature of some of the quite long arias and ensembles. I found them undistracting most of the time, but others may very well find them completely so.Read more ›
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Format: Blu-ray
This opera by Spontini, a well-respected opera composer during his lifetime 1774-1851, and thought lost was discovered as recently as 2007. The opera was subsequently obtained by the municipality of Maiolati Spontini, the composer's birthplace. The first modern performance of this newly discovered work was at the Festival Pergolesi Spontini in Jesi, Italy. This recording originates from the same venue and was first published in 2014.

Spontini's writing in this light opera, a relatively early work dating from his Italian period, involves much hair-raising virtuoso writing of the essential ingredients of rhythmic repetition, motoric ensembles and play with word fragments which Rossini made much of. If anything, the writing is even more demanding of vocal dexterity than that demanded by Rossini in some of his more demanding passages.

The plot revolves around seven characters that all have conflicting interests in the matrimonial stakes. Most of these claims to matrimonial bliss are doubtful but at the end of the opera most of the complications are resolved for good or ill.

This could not be described as a deep operatic experience but no-one could doubt the vocal skills of the whole cast who despatch their vocally demanding roles with remarkable and breath-taking skill. These young singers will be ones to watch out for in the future when more emotionally demanding or convincing roles may be expected of them.

Rather than providing an in-depth consideration of each singer within this opera it should be sufficient to list them for the future as equally note-worthy.
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