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L'Opéra - Vinyl Edition

L'Opéra - Vinyl Edition


Berlioz:

La Damnation de Faust, Op. 24: Merci, doux crépuscule!

Inutiles regrets…En un dernier naufrage (from Les Troyens)

Bizet:

La fleur que tu m'avais jetée (from Carmen)

C’est toi, toi qu’enfin je revois (from Les pêcheurs de perles)

Au fond du temple saint (from Les Pêcheurs de Perles)

Ludovic Tézier (baritone)

Gounod:

L'amour, l'amour... Ah, lève-toi soleil (from Roméo et Juliette)

Halévy:

Rachel, quand du Seigneur (from La Juive)

Lalo:

Puisqu'on ne peut flêchir (from Le roi d’Ys)

Vainement, ma bien-aimée (from Le roi d’Ys)

Massenet:

Traduire ! Ah ! Bien souvent mon rêve s’envole… Pourquoi me réveiller (Werther)

Enfin Manon, nous voilà enfin seuls ensemble... En fermant les yeux (from Manon)

Toi ! Vous ! Oui ! Je fus cruelle… N’est-ce plus ma main (from Manon)

Sonya Yoncheva (soprano)

Ah! Tout est bien fini... O souverain (from Le Cid)

Meyerbeer:

Pays merveilleux... Ô paradis (from L'Africaine)

Offenbach:

O Dieu, de quelle ivresse (from Les contes d'Hoffmann)

Thomas, Ambroise:

Elle ne croyait pas, dans sa candeur naïve (from Mignon)


Read Presto's complete review of this recording here.

Jonas Kaufmann pays homage to a magnificent era of opera that defined musical splendor and elegance, in his new album of 19th-century French opera arias and duets. His selection of music for tenor spans this momentous period, starting with “Rachel, quand du Seigneur” from Halévy’s La Juive (1835), through two of Bizet’s greatest works, “La fleur que tu m’avais jetée” from Carmen (1875) and “Au fond du temple saint” from Les Pêcheurs de perles (1863), by way of Gounod’s “Ah! lève-toi, soleil!” from Roméo et Juliette (1867) and ending with the latest aria “Pourquoi me réveiller” from Massenet’s masterpiece Werther (1892). Plus many more along the way. “The French operatic repertory is very close to my heart,” says Kaufmann. “This fascinating music reflects a unique period in European culture. I didn’t want to choose only highlights for this album but also works and roles that have been key experiences for me. Wilhelm Meister in Mignon, for example, was my first major French role – I sang it in Toulouse in 2001. Carmen and Werther helped to open doors for me. The fact that I sang my first Werther at the Paris Opéra of all places, as a German surrounded by a French ensemble, was undoubtedly rather risky, but I had some excellent guides to help me: répétiteurs, colleagues, conductors and, not least, the recordings of the legendary French tenor Georges Thill.”

“There should be no carping at his finely judged phrasing, his psychological acuity and, when he hits a sweet spot, sheer seductive swagger. His and Tézier’s searing delivery of the famous duet from Bizet’s The Pearl Fishers is as good as any you will hear on record...As the repertoire gets heavier, so the album builds to a terrific climax.” The Times, 8th September 2017 ****

“To my mind, the finest recording he’s made in a decade...it’s the tantalising glimpses of roles which may never feature in Kaufmann’s stage repertoire that are the real plums of this album for me: Berlioz’s Énee, Meyerbeer’s Vasco de Gama and Rodrigue from Massenet’s Le Cid bear testimony to a voice that’s ageing quite spectacularly.” Katherine Cooper, Presto Classical, 15th September 2017

Presto Disc of the Week

15th September 2017

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Sony - 88985390761

(Vinyl - 2 discs)

$23.75

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

L'Opéra

L'Opéra

jewelcase version


Berlioz:

La Damnation de Faust, Op. 24: Merci, doux crépuscule!

Inutiles regrets…En un dernier naufrage (from Les Troyens)

Bizet:

La fleur que tu m'avais jetée (from Carmen)

C’est toi, toi qu’enfin je revois (from Les pêcheurs de perles)

Au fond du temple saint (from Les Pêcheurs de Perles)

Ludovic Tézier (baritone)

Gounod:

L'amour, l'amour... Ah, lève-toi soleil (from Roméo et Juliette)

Halévy:

Rachel, quand du Seigneur (from La Juive)

Lalo:

Puisqu'on ne peut flêchir (from Le roi d’Ys)

Vainement, ma bien-aimée (from Le roi d’Ys)

Massenet:

Traduire ! Ah ! Bien souvent mon rêve s’envole… Pourquoi me réveiller (Werther)

Enfin Manon, nous voilà enfin seuls ensemble... En fermant les yeux (from Manon)

Toi ! Vous ! Oui ! Je fus cruelle… N’est-ce plus ma main (from Manon)

Sonya Yoncheva (soprano)

Ah! Tout est bien fini... O souverain (from Le Cid)

Meyerbeer:

Pays merveilleux... Ô paradis (from L'Africaine)

Offenbach:

O Dieu, de quelle ivresse (from Les contes d'Hoffmann)

Thomas, Ambroise:

Elle ne croyait pas, dans sa candeur naïve (from Mignon)


Read Presto's complete review of this recording here.

Jonas Kaufmann pays homage to a magnificent era of opera that defined musical splendor and elegance, in his new album of 19th-century French opera arias and duets. His selection of music for tenor spans this momentous period, starting with “Rachel, quand du Seigneur” from Halévy’s La Juive (1835), through two of Bizet’s greatest works, “La fleur que tu m’avais jetée” from Carmen (1875) and “Au fond du temple saint” from Les Pêcheurs de perles (1863), by way of Gounod’s “Ah! lève-toi, soleil!” from Roméo et Juliette (1867) and ending with the latest aria “Pourquoi me réveiller” from Massenet’s masterpiece Werther (1892). Plus many more along the way. “The French operatic repertory is very close to my heart,” says Kaufmann. “This fascinating music reflects a unique period in European culture. I didn’t want to choose only highlights for this album but also works and roles that have been key experiences for me. Wilhelm Meister in Mignon, for example, was my first major French role – I sang it in Toulouse in 2001. Carmen and Werther helped to open doors for me. The fact that I sang my first Werther at the Paris Opéra of all places, as a German surrounded by a French ensemble, was undoubtedly rather risky, but I had some excellent guides to help me: répétiteurs, colleagues, conductors and, not least, the recordings of the legendary French tenor Georges Thill.”

“There should be no carping at his finely judged phrasing, his psychological acuity and, when he hits a sweet spot, sheer seductive swagger. His and Tézier’s searing delivery of the famous duet from Bizet’s The Pearl Fishers is as good as any you will hear on record...As the repertoire gets heavier, so the album builds to a terrific climax.” The Times, 8th September 2017 ****

“To my mind, the finest recording he’s made in a decade...it’s the tantalising glimpses of roles which may never feature in Kaufmann’s stage repertoire that are the real plums of this album for me: Berlioz’s Énee, Meyerbeer’s Vasco de Gama and Rodrigue from Massenet’s Le Cid bear testimony to a voice that’s ageing quite spectacularly.” Katherine Cooper, Presto Classical, 15th September 2017

Presto Disc of the Week

15th September 2017

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Sony - 88985390762

(CD)

Normally: $13.75

Special: $12.50

(also available to download from $10.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

L'Opéra

L'Opéra

deluxe version


Berlioz:

La Damnation de Faust, Op. 24: Merci, doux crépuscule!

Inutiles regrets…En un dernier naufrage (from Les Troyens)

Bizet:

La fleur que tu m'avais jetée (from Carmen)

C’est toi, toi qu’enfin je revois (from Les pêcheurs de perles)

Au fond du temple saint (from Les Pêcheurs de Perles)

Ludovic Tézier (baritone)

Gounod:

L'amour, l'amour... Ah, lève-toi soleil (from Roméo et Juliette)

Halévy:

Rachel, quand du Seigneur (from La Juive)

Lalo:

Puisqu'on ne peut flêchir (from Le roi d’Ys)

Vainement, ma bien-aimée (from Le roi d’Ys)

Massenet:

Traduire ! Ah ! Bien souvent mon rêve s’envole… Pourquoi me réveiller (Werther)

Enfin Manon, nous voilà enfin seuls ensemble... En fermant les yeux (from Manon)

Toi ! Vous ! Oui ! Je fus cruelle… N’est-ce plus ma main (from Manon)

Sonya Yoncheva (soprano)

Ah! Tout est bien fini... O souverain (from Le Cid)

Meyerbeer:

Pays merveilleux... Ô paradis (from L'Africaine)

Offenbach:

O Dieu, de quelle ivresse (from Les contes d'Hoffmann)

Thomas, Ambroise:

Elle ne croyait pas, dans sa candeur naïve (from Mignon)


Read Presto's complete review of this recording here.

Jonas Kaufmann pays homage to a magnificent era of opera that defined musical splendor and elegance, in his new album of 19th-century French opera arias and duets. His selection of music for tenor spans this momentous period, starting with “Rachel, quand du Seigneur” from Halévy’s La Juive (1835), through two of Bizet’s greatest works, “La fleur que tu m’avais jetée” from Carmen (1875) and “Au fond du temple saint” from Les Pêcheurs de perles (1863), by way of Gounod’s “Ah! lève-toi, soleil!” from Roméo et Juliette (1867) and ending with the latest aria “Pourquoi me réveiller” from Massenet’s masterpiece Werther (1892). Plus many more along the way. “The French operatic repertory is very close to my heart,” says Kaufmann. “This fascinating music reflects a unique period in European culture. I didn’t want to choose only highlights for this album but also works and roles that have been key experiences for me. Wilhelm Meister in Mignon, for example, was my first major French role – I sang it in Toulouse in 2001. Carmen and Werther helped to open doors for me. The fact that I sang my first Werther at the Paris Opéra of all places, as a German surrounded by a French ensemble, was undoubtedly rather risky, but I had some excellent guides to help me: répétiteurs, colleagues, conductors and, not least, the recordings of the legendary French tenor Georges Thill.”

“There should be no carping at his finely judged phrasing, his psychological acuity and, when he hits a sweet spot, sheer seductive swagger. His and Tézier’s searing delivery of the famous duet from Bizet’s The Pearl Fishers is as good as any you will hear on record...As the repertoire gets heavier, so the album builds to a terrific climax.” The Times, 8th September 2017 ****

“To my mind, the finest recording he’s made in a decade...it’s the tantalising glimpses of roles which may never feature in Kaufmann’s stage repertoire that are the real plums of this album for me: Berlioz’s Énee, Meyerbeer’s Vasco de Gama and Rodrigue from Massenet’s Le Cid bear testimony to a voice that’s ageing quite spectacularly.” Katherine Cooper, Presto Classical, 15th September 2017

Presto Disc of the Week

15th September 2017

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Sony - 88985390832

(CD)

Normally: $21.75

Special: $18.25

(also available to download from $10.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Berg: Lulu

Berg: Lulu


Marlis Petersen (Lulu), Daniela Sindram (Gräfin Geschwitz), Rachael Wilson (Eine Theater-Garderobiere/Ein Gymnasiast/Ein Groom), Rainer Trost (Der Maler/Ein Neger), Bo Skovhus (Dr. Schön/Jack the Ripper), Matthias Klink (Alwa), Martin Winkler (Ein Tierbändiger/Ein Athlet), Wolfgang Ablinger-Sperrhacke (Der Prinz/Der Kammerdiener/Der Marquis), Elsa Benoit (Eine Fünfzehnjährige), Christian Rieger (Der Medizinalrat/Der Bankier/Der Professor), Pavlo Hunka (Schigolch), Christoph Stephinger (Der Theaterdirektor)

Bayerisches Staatsorchester, Kirill Petrenko (conductor), Dmitri Tcherniakov (director)

Lulu, Alban Berg’s hauntingly mysterious opera in a new production by Dmitri Tcherniakov, has been one of the major events of the 2015 Bayerische Staatsoper season : an ideal setting for conductor Kirill Petrenko first-ever DVD recording ! A sensuous and impenetrable opera, Berg’s masterpiece depicts the burning and sometimes bestial intensity of human relationships through the figure of Lulu, the true femme fatale, bearer of an enigma that haunts us way beyond the end of the opera. Venenous, sibylline, deathly for who approaches her, the dangerous Lulu destroys the established and bourgeois order she evolves in, carrying away with her all certainty, just like the audacious and demanding musical language Berg invented to give form to this unreachable character. Frank Wedekind’s work proved indeed to be an extremely fertile ground for the dodecaphonic composer’s imagination, and gave birth to one of the most singular and ambitious work of art of the twentieth century. With the privilege of a dream cast, gathering Berg’s best interprets, this new production of Lulu is conducted by Kirill Petrenko, and staged by Dmitri Tcherniakov. A visionary genius considered as the contemporary stage ‘enfant terrible’, it is with a shattering realism that he directs those characters, hostages to their own passions and darkest fantasies, and reveals the complexity of this great human and social tragedy. Marlis Petersen is Lulu, a role she was then singing for the ninth time, and which awarded her, for this production, the title of ‘singer of the year’ by German magazine Opernwelt

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Bel Air Classiques - BAC429

(Blu-ray)

Normally: $36.25

Special: $31.75

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Donizetti: La Favorite

Donizetti: La Favorite


Elīna Garanca (Léonor de Guzman), Matthew Polenzani (Fernand), Mariusz Kwiecień (Alphonse XI), Mika Kares (Balthazar), Elsa Benoit (Inès), Joshua Owen Mills ( Don Gaspar)

Bayerisches Staatsorchester, Chor des Bayerischen Staatsoper, Karel Mark Chichon, Amélie Niermeyer (dir.)

Read Presto's complete review of this disc here.

The premiere of the French version of Gaetano Donizetti’s La Favorite at the Bayerische Staatsoper on 23 October 2016 was a memorable event and this is why:

• Star mezzo-soprano Elīna Garanca gave her acclaimed theatrical role debut as Léonor de Guzman

• Matthew Polenzani (Fernand) and Mariusz Kwiecień (Alphonse XI) gave their role debuts

• Karel Mark Chichon conducted La Favorite for the first time

• Chichon and the stage director Amélie Niermeyer gave their debuts at the Bayerische Staatsoper

• The last new production of La Favorite at the Bayerische Staatsoper was more than a 100 years ago

To tie in with two further performances at the Bayerische Staatsoper on 26 & 29 July, Deutsche Grammophon is set to release this extraordinary production on DVD/Blu-ray, recorded live on 23 October 2016

The “fabulous Elīna Garanča […] sings beautifully and emotionally restrained, leaving the audience deeply moved during her dying scene”, while Matthew Polenzani, in his debut as Fernand, scores with superb singing and acting, “reaching high tones with ease” (Süddeutsche Zeitung). Mariusz Kwiecień “convinces with the proper dandified arrogance and impressive acting”, while conductor Karel Mark Chichon completes the musically fantastic performance by “getting the most out of the Bayerische Staatsorchester, impressively bringing out the dark, viscous sounds of the score and following the soloists with great intuition.” (BR Klassik)

“The role of Léonor seems tailor-made for Garanča...her detached elegance and regal hauteur are ideal for this high-end trophy-mistress...When she finally lets her guard down in that great Act Three monologue, the emotional impact is heightened by the restraint that’s gone before...Polenzani, too, sings as if to the manner born, delivering heart-stopping pianissimo top notes and weightless legato.” Presto Classical, 28th July 2017

Presto Disc of the Week

28th July 2017

Released or re-released in last 6 months

DVD Video

Region: 0

DG - 0735358

(DVD Video - 2 discs)

Normally: $20.25

Special: $18.50

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Donizetti: La Favorite

Donizetti: La Favorite


Elīna Garanca (Léonor de Guzman), Matthew Polenzani (Fernand), Mariusz Kwiecień (Alphonse XI), Mika Kares (Balthazar), Elsa Benoit (Inès), Joshua Owen Mills ( Don Gaspar)

Bayerisches Staatsorchester, Chor des Bayerischen Staatsoper, Karel Mark Chichon, Amélie Niermeyer (dir.)

Read Presto's complete review of this disc here.

The premiere of the French version of Gaetano Donizetti’s La Favorite at the Bayerische Staatsoper on 23 October 2016 was a memorable event and this is why:

• star mezzo-soprano Elīna Garanca gave her acclaimed theatrical role debut as Léonor de Guzman

• Matthew Polenzani (Fernand) and Mariusz Kwiecień (Alphonse XI) gave their role debuts

• Karel Mark Chichon conducted La Favorite for the first time

• Chichon and the stage director Amélie Niermeyer gave their debuts at the Bayerische Staatsoper

• The last new production of La Favorite at the Bayerische Staatsoper was more than a 100 years ago

To tie in with two further performances at the Bayerische Staatsoper on 26 & 29 July, Deutsche Grammophon is set to release this extraordinary production on DVD/Blu-ray, recorded live on 23 October 2016

The “fabulous Elīna Garanča […] sings beautifully and emotionally restrained, leaving the audience deeply moved during her dying scene”, while Matthew Polenzani, in his debut as Fernand, scores with superb singing and acting, “reaching high tones with ease” (Süddeutsche Zeitung). Mariusz Kwiecień “convinces with the proper dandified arrogance and impressive acting”, while conductor Karel Mark Chichon completes the musically fantastic performance by “getting the most out of the Bayerische Staatsorchester, impressively bringing out the dark, viscous sounds of the score and following the soloists with great intuition.” (BR Klassik)

“The role of Léonor seems tailor-made for Garanča...her detached elegance and regal hauteur are ideal for this high-end trophy-mistress...When she finally lets her guard down in that great Act Three monologue, the emotional impact is heightened by the restraint that’s gone before...Polenzani, too, sings as if to the manner born, delivering heart-stopping pianissimo top notes and weightless legato.” Presto Classical, 28th July 2017

Presto Disc of the Week

28th July 2017

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

DG - 0735359

(Blu-ray)

Normally: $23.25

Special: $21.00

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Verdi: Un ballo in maschera

Verdi: Un ballo in maschera


Piotr Beczala (Riccardo), George Petean (Renato), Anja Harteros (Amelia), Okka von der Damerau (Ulrica), Sofia Fomina (Oscar)

Bayerisches Staatsorchester, Zubin Mehta

Staged by Johannes Erath

Munich’s new Ballo in maschera has received much critical acclaim: ‘This production shows what a utopia opera can be’ (Abendzeitung). Ten years after stepping down as music director of the Bavarian State Opera, Zubin Mehta returned to Munich in March 2016 to celebrate his 80th birthday conducting Verdi’s masterpiece for the first time in a staged production. His cast features some of today’s finest Verdi singers: soprano Anja Harteros, singing Amelia for the first time and ‘filling every note with Verdian intensity’, tenor Piotr Beczala as a ‘visually and vocally dashing Riccardo’ and George Petean as an ‘exemplary’ Renato (Neue Musikzeitung). In director Johannes Erath’s super-sensitive new production, this historically-based tale of illicit love, conspiracy and betrayal unfolds in a surrealistic, shadowy setting transformed by lighting and projections. Special praise was showered by the enthusiastic critics on Maestro Mehta, whom ‘creates concentrated musical connections, miraculously guiding his orchestra and unsurpassable voices the way a thermal lifts a paraglider... Musically the performance was a dream‘ (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung).

SOUND FORMAT:DVD: Dolby Stereo, DTS 5.1

PICTURE: 16:9, HD

SUBTITLES: Italian (original language), German, English, French, Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Japanese

BOOKLET: English, German, French

TOTAL RUNNING TIME: 149 mins

“Musically things are more than fine. Beczała pulls off this one hell of a tenor role…with style and confidence. Harteros gives her usual tightly focused emotional performance. With good sound and helpful shot selction the release is strongly recommended.” Gramophone Magazine, May 2017

“the production looks glamourous and slick…As Riccardo, Piotr Beczala is a dashing and vocally elegant protagonist…” Opera Now, May 2017

“Nigh on unimpeachable, Beczala’s Riccardo is sung throughout with clean edges and unforced lyricism… he gives a marvellous performance. There’s excellent work from Fomina’s brilliantly sung, female cross-dressing Oscar, and grand vocal depths from Okka von der Damerau’s glamourous soothsayer. Working with top-quality forces, Zubin Mehta provides motivational conducting” Opera, July 2017

“The foregrounding of Oscar’s character is fascinating. It’s a striking performance amid a clutch of stellar turns…The ensembles are expertly balanced by Zubin Mehta, and the orchestra plays with a reliably silky tone.” BBC Music Magazine, August 2017 ****

GGramophone Magazine

DVD of the Month - May 2017

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

C Major - 739408

(DVD Video)

$29.50

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Verdi: Un ballo in maschera

Verdi: Un ballo in maschera


Piotr Beczala (Riccardo), George Petean (Renato), Anja Harteros (Amelia), Okka von der Damerau, Sofia Fomina (Oscar)

Bayerisches Staatsorchester, Zubin Mehta

Staged by Johannes Erath

Munich’s new Ballo in maschera has received much critical acclaim: ‘This production shows what a utopia opera can be’ (Abendzeitung). Ten years after stepping down as music director of the Bavarian State Opera, Zubin Mehta returned to Munich in March 2016 to celebrate his 80th birthday conducting Verdi’s masterpiece for the first time in a staged production. His cast features some of today’s finest Verdi singers: soprano Anja Harteros, singing Amelia for the first time and ‘filling every note with Verdian intensity’, tenor Piotr Beczala as a ‘visually and vocally dashing Riccardo’ and George Petean as an ‘exemplary’ Renato (Neue Musikzeitung). In director Johannes Erath’s super-sensitive new production, this historically-based tale of illicit love, conspiracy and betrayal unfolds in a surrealistic, shadowy setting transformed by lighting and projections. Special praise was showered by the enthusiastic critics on Maestro Mehta, whom ‘creates concentrated musical connections, miraculously guiding his orchestra and unsurpassable voices the way a thermal lifts a paraglider... Musically the performance was a dream‘ (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung).

SOUND FORMAT: BluRay: PCM 2.0, DTS-HD MA 5.1

PICTURE: 16:9, HD

SUBTITLES: Italian (original language), German, English, French, Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Japanese

BOOKLET: English, German, French

TOTAL RUNNING TIME: 149 mins

“Musically things are more than fine. Beczała pulls off this one hell of a tenor role…with style and confidence. Harteros gives her usual tightly focused emotional performance. With good sound and helpful shot selction the release is strongly recommended.” Gramophone Magazine, May 2017

“Eminently enjoyable, this marvellous if underrated Verdi opera Un Ballo in maschera is compellingly performed with Piotr Beczała in masterly form.” MusicWeb International, May 2017

“Nigh on unimpeachable, Beczala’s Riccardo is sung throughout with clean edges and unforced lyricism… he gives a marvellous performance. There’s excellent work from Fomina’s brilliantly sung, female cross-dressing Oscar, and grand vocal depths from Okka von der Damerau’s glamourous soothsayer. Working with top-quality forces, Zubin Mehta provides motivational conducting” Opera, July 2017

“The foregrounding of Oscar’s character is fascinating. It’s a striking performance amid a clutch of stellar turns…The ensembles are expertly balanced by Zubin Mehta, and the orchestra plays with a reliably silky tone.” BBC Music Magazine, August 2017 ****

GGramophone Magazine

Blu-ray of the Month - May 2017

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

C Major - 739504

(Blu-ray)

$35.25

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Boito: Mefistofele

Boito: Mefistofele

Recorded at Bayerische Staatsoper München, 2015


René Pape (Mefistofele), Joseph Calleja (Faust), Kristine Opolais (Margherita), Karine Babajanyan (Elena), Heike Grötzinger (Marta), Andrea Borghini (Wagner), Rachael Wilson (Pantalis) & Joshua Owen Mills (Nerèo)

Bavarian State Orchestra, Omer Meir Wellber (conductor) & Roland Schwab (stage director)

Piero Vinciguerra, set designer

Renée Listerdal, costume designer

Michael Bauer, lighting designer

Stefano Giannetti, choreographer

Best-known today as the librettist of Verdi’s final Shakespearean masterpieces, Otello and Falstaff, the multitalented Arrigo Boito was also a fine composer in his own right. Hugely ambitious in scope, and some 20 years in the making, his first (and only completed) opera, Mefistofele, sets out to encompass nothing less than the whole of Goethe’s vast poetic drama Faust (part I and II), and is considered the very central work of his phase between Verdi and Puccini.

Making his debut at the Bayerische Staatsoper, director Roland Schwab (a protégé of the legendary Ruth Berghaus) plays devil’s advocate by setting the opera in a nightmarish atmosphere. “The exceptional solistic cast” (ORF) features René Pape, Joseph Calleja, Kristine Opolais and Karine Babajanyan.

Picture format: NTSC 16:9

Sound format: PCM Stereo / DTS 5.1

Region code: 0 (worldwide)

Subtitles: Italian, English, German, French, Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Japanese

Booklet notes: English, German, French

Running time: 140 mins

No. of DVDs: 1 (DVD 9)

“Pape revels in the grotesque vocal grandeuer of his suited and booted Mefistofle , with Joseph Calleja offering a thoughtful, sweet-toned Faust, painfully aware of the wrong turs he takes on his road to eventual salvation.” BBC Music Magazine, March 2017 ***/*****

“René Pape’s Mefistofele is restrained and autocratic…Calleja is also far less camp than has become the norm for Faust, to the opera’s benefit. Both men are in seriously good voice. As is Opolais, who lavishes no small weight of tone on the part…this release is a good first calling post for Boito’s drama” Gramophone Magazine, February 2017

“Omer Meir Wellber conducts a thinking man’s version of the score, and René Pape matches him as a sardonic, measured protagonist. Joseph Calleja is at his stylish best as Faust, Kristine Opolais is dramatically convincing but vocally scratchy as Margherita” Opera Now, February 2017 ****

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

C Major - 739208

(DVD Video)

$29.50

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Dvorak: Rusalka, Op. 114

Dvorak: Rusalka, Op. 114


Kristine Opolais (Rusalka), Klaus Florian Vogt (Prince), Nadia Krasteva (Foreign Princess), Gunther Groissböck (Goblin), Janina Baechle (Ježibaba), Ulrich Reß (Forester), Tara Erraught (Kitchen Boy), John Chest (Hunter), Evgeniya Sotnikova (1st Wood Nymph), Angela Brower (2nd Wood Nymph) & Okka von der Damerau (3rd Wood Nymph)

Chor der Bayerischen Staatsoper & Bayerisches Staatsorchester, Tomas Hanus (conductor) & Martin Kušej (director)

This highly acclaimed production from the Bayerische Staatsoper, a powerful and fascinating re-interpretation of Dvořák’s fairy-tale opera Rusalka, was a revelation: the young, up-and-coming Latvian soprano, Kristīne Opolais, whose performance was rightly hailed by the press as “one of the most vivid and striking accomplishments seen on an opera stage in a long time” (Vienna’s leading daily Der Standard). With her supple and velvety soprano voice, her captivating physical beauty and her hauntingly moving stage presence, Kristīne Opolais perfectly embodies the role of the water nymph who becomes a human being in order to find love.

Bonus: Making of “Rusalka”

Recording date: Bayerische Staatsoper, 2010

Sound format: PCM 2.0, dts-HD MA 5.0

Picture format: 16:9, HD

Subtitles: Eng, Ger, Fr, Sp, Cn, Kor; Bonus: Eng

Booklet: Eng, Ger, Fr

Total running time: 192 mins (156 mins Opera + 36 mins Bonus)

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

C Major - 750904

(Blu-ray)

$35.25

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

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