Nina Stemme

Soprano

Nina Stemme

Swedish soprano Nina Stemme (born May 11 1963) is an opera singer renowned for her stentorian, solid dramatic soprano voice.

In 2006, Nina Stemme made her highly successful role debut in the title role of Aida in a new production at Zürich Opera and recorded her first album as an exclusive artist for EMI Classics of Strauss's Four Last Songs and final scenes.

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Puccini: Turandot

Puccini: Turandot


Nina Stemme (Turandot), Aleksandrs Antonenko (Calaf), Maria Agresta (Liù), Alexander Tsymbaluk (Timur), Angelo Veccia (Ping), Roberto Covatta (Pang), Blagoj Nacoski (Pong), Carlo Bosi (Altoum), Gianluca Breda (Mandarino), Azer Rza-Zada (Principe di Persia)

Coro di voci bianche dell’Accademia Teatro alla Scala, Coro del Teatro alla Scala di Milano, Orchestra del Teatro alla Scala di Milano, Riccardo Chailly

TURANDOT, the first BD/DVD of a cycle of the complete Puccini operas in partnership with La Scala and conducted by Chailly. Quality casts and sumptuous productions guarantee a new benchmark for these classic operas. Nina Stemme assumes the title role with Maria Agresta as Liu with Aleksandrs Antonenko as the heroic Calaf.

“The set and costumes (Raimund Bauer and Andrea Schmidt-Futterer) are a feast for the eye...[Stemme] delivers ‘In questa reggia’ with burnished tone, culminating in a gleaming top C...Tsymbalyuk is touching in Timur’s lament for Liù, and the masks are well characterised...A firm recommendation for this eminently watchable offering from the theatre of the opera’s premiere.” Gramophone Magazine, April 2017

GGramophone Magazine

DVD of the Month - April 2017

Released or re-released in last 6 months

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Decca - 0743937

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Puccini: Turandot

Puccini: Turandot


Nina Stemme (Turandot), Aleksandrs Antonenko (Calaf), Maria Agresta (Liù), Alexander Tsymbaluk (Timur), Angelo Veccia (Ping), Roberto Covatta (Pang), Blagoj Nacoski (Pong), Carlo Bosi (Altoum), Gianluca Breda (Mandarino), Azer Rza-Zada (Principe di Persia)

Coro di voci bianche dell’Accademia Teatro alla Scala, Coro del Teatro alla Scala di Milano, Orchestra del Teatro alla Scala di Milano, Riccardo Chailly, Riccardo Chailly

TURANDOT, the first BD/DVD of a cycle of the complete Puccini operas in partnership with La Scala and conducted by Chailly. Quality casts and sumptuous productions guarantee a new benchmark for these classic operas. Nina Stemme assumes the title role with Maria Agresta as Liu with Aleksandrs Antonenko as the heroic Calaf.

“The set and costumes (Raimund Bauer and Andrea Schmidt-Futterer) are a feast for the eye...[Stemme] delivers ‘In questa reggia’ with burnished tone, culminating in a gleaming top C...Tsymbalyuk is touching in Timur’s lament for Liù, and the masks are well characterised...A firm recommendation for this eminently watchable offering from the theatre of the opera’s premiere.” Gramophone Magazine, April 2017

GGramophone Magazine

DVD/Blu-ray of the Month - April 2017

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Decca - 0743938

(Blu-ray)

$22.25

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Puccini: La fanciulla del West

Puccini: La fanciulla del West


A celebrated new production of Puccini’s La fanciulla del West from the Vienna State opera featuring Jonas Kaufmann and Nina Stemme. Staged by Marco Arturo Marelli, who sets it in a modern-day mining village, with the feel of a gritty modern drama, during the American gold rush of 1849. An unlikely setting for an Italian opera, but one that has a happy ending. It tells the tale of Minnie, the bartender in the saloon whom all the local men adore, and Dick Johnson alias Ramerrez, a notorious bandit. Dick and Minnie fall in love on first meeting, so much so that he vows to change his life as a bandit, sung by two contemporary great singers: Nina Stemme and Jonas Kaufmann. A new production from Marco Arturo Marelli brought one of Puccini’s rarely performed works to the Vienna State Opera stage in September 2013. Jonas Kaufmann in his role debut as the wanted and notorious bandit Ramerrez proves ideally cast, full of power, with his breathtakingly beautiful baritone timbre. "Nina Stemme and Jonas Kaufmann are the opera’s must-see couple for a generation… The rich playing of the Vienna orchestra under Franz Welser-Möst shows up the colour and detail of Puccini’s score to spectacular effect” Financial Times.

“The star couple are on top form...In the theatre Stemme sounded one size larger vocally than Kaufmann but the tenor's burnished tone and romantic magnetism come across impressively on disc. Tomasz Konieczny does well not to be upstaged as a searingly forceful Jack Rance...The combined strengths of this performance make Sony's DVD a clear first choice among recent releases.” Gramophone Magazine, January 2016

Presto Discs of 2015

Finalist

Building a Library

Also Recommended - December 2016

BBC Music Magazine

Opera Choice - March 2016

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

Sony - 88875064069

(DVD Video)

$13.25

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Puccini: La fanciulla del West

Puccini: La fanciulla del West


A celebrated new production of Puccini’s La fanciulla del West from the Vienna State opera featuring Jonas Kaufmann and Nina Stemme. Staged by Marco Arturo Marelli, who sets it in a modern-day mining village, with the feel of a gritty modern drama, during the American gold rush of 1849. An unlikely setting for an Italian opera, but one that has a happy ending. It tells the tale of Minnie, the bartender in the saloon whom all the local men adore, and Dick Johnson alias Ramerrez, a notorious bandit. Dick and Minnie fall in love on first meeting, so much so that he vows to change his life as a bandit, sung by two contemporary great singers: Nina Stemme and Jonas Kaufmann. A new production from Marco Arturo Marelli brought one of Puccini’s rarely performed works to the Vienna State Opera stage in September 2013. Jonas Kaufmann in his role debut as the wanted and notorious bandit Ramerrez proves ideally cast, full of power, with his breathtakingly beautiful baritone timbre. "Nina Stemme and Jonas Kaufmann are the opera’s must-see couple for a generation… The rich playing of the Vienna orchestra under Franz Welser-Möst shows up the colour and detail of Puccini’s score to spectacular effect” Financial Times.

“The star couple are on top form...In the theatre Stemme sounded one size larger vocally than Kaufmann but the tenor's burnished tone and romantic magnetism come across impressively on disc. Tomasz Konieczny does well not to be upstaged as a searingly forceful Jack Rance...The combined strengths of this performance make Sony's DVD a clear first choice among recent releases.” Gramophone Magazine, January 2016

“Stemme and Jonas Kaufmann succeed in making Johnson and Minnie’s last-chance-love thoroughly believable. Their singing is magnificent: supple, authoritative, sincere and tender, with due attention to the words...Welser-Möst balances narrative urgency and the hallucinatory languor of Minnie and Dick’s love music with playing of outstanding discipline, detail and brilliance from the orchestra.” BBC Music Magazine *****

Presto Discs of 2015

Finalist

Building a Library

Also Recommended - December 2016

BBC Music Magazine

Opera Choice - March 2016

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Sony - 88875064079

(Blu-ray)

$21.00

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Wagner: Siegfried

Wagner: Siegfried

Live recording from the Teatro alla Scala, Milan, 2012


Lance Ryan (Siegfried), Peter Bronder (Mime), Terje Stensvold (Der Wanderer), Johannes Martin Kränzle (Alberich), Anna Larsson (Erda) & Nina Stemme (Brünnhilde)

Teatro alla Scala, Daniel Barenboim (conductor) & Guy Cassiers (stage director)

In Siegfried, the “Second Day” or third evening of the Ring Cycle, we meet the pivotal hero of the epic tale. The energetic drive from Die Walküre is pursued here while Siegfried finally recaptures the mighty ring from Fafner the Dragon and awakens Brünnhilde from her penal sleep on the great rock.

Lance Ryan, having interpreted this role on the greatest stages of the world including the Bayreuth Festival, portrays the naïve hero. His antagonists are Peter Bronder, great and agile as Mime, Terje Stensvold, an experienced Wanderer and Johannes Martin Kränzle, who continues his mean and deceitful depiction of Alberich. The leading ladies are Nina Stemme, once again unrivalled as Brünnhilde and Anna Larsson, moving as the God-mother Erda.

Sound Formats: PCM Stereo, dts-HD Master Audio 5.1

Picture Format: 16:9

Resolution: 1080i High Definition

Subtitle Languages: DE (Original Language), GB, FR, ES, IT, Korean

Running Time: 253 mins

Blu-ray Disc: 50 GB (Dual Layer)

FSK: 0

Region Code: worldwide

Worldwide available excluding Japan

“Stensvold (Wanderer) sings with perfectly centred tone, terrific staying power and command of broad legato phrases...Surprisingly, though, it's Alberich here who possesses the more beautiful voice: baritone Johannes Martin Kranzle, combining effortless vocalism with chilling intensity of utterance - and he's also a born actor...The video direction adopts a wonderfully cinematic approach.” International Record Review, March 2014

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Arthaus Musik Barenboim La Scala Milan Ring Cycle - 108092

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Wagner: Siegfried

Wagner: Siegfried

Live recording from the Teatro alla Scala, Milan, 2012


Lance Ryan (Siegfried), Peter Bronder (Mime), Terje Stensvold (Der Wanderer), Johannes Martin Kränzle (Alberich), Anna Larsson (Erda) & Nina Stemme (Brünnhilde)

Teatro alla Scala, Daniel Barenboim (conductor) & Guy Cassiers (stage director)

In Siegfried, the “Second Day” or third evening of the Ring Cycle, we meet the pivotal hero of the epic tale. The energetic drive from Die Walküre is pursued here while Siegfried finally recaptures the mighty ring from Fafner the Dragon and awakens Brünnhilde from her penal sleep on the great rock.

Lance Ryan, having interpreted this role on the greatest stages of the world including the Bayreuth Festival, portrays the naïve hero. His antagonists are Peter Bronder, great and agile as Mime, Terje Stensvold, an experienced Wanderer and Johannes Martin Kränzle, who continues his mean and deceitful depiction of Alberich. The leading ladies are Nina Stemme, once again unrivalled as Brünnhilde and Anna Larsson, moving as the God-mother Erda.

Sound Formats: PCM Stereo, DD 5.1

Picture Format: 16:9

DVD Format: 2 x DVD 9 / NTSC

Subtitle Languages: DE (Original Language), GB, FR, ES, IT, Korean

Running Time: 253 mins

“Not only does Barenboim have complete control of the shape of Wagner's enormous acts, but there are enormous numbers of details, often witty and pertinent, and immense climaxes...[Stensvold] almost steals the show with his lofty grandeur barely concealing anxiety and exhaustion...Stemme is superb, flawless.” BBC Music Magazine, May 2014 ****

“Stensvold (Wanderer) sings with perfectly centred tone, terrific staying power and command of broad legato phrases...Surprisingly, though, it's Alberich here who possesses the more beautiful voice: baritone Johannes Martin Kranzle, combining effortless vocalism with chilling intensity of utterance - and he's also a born actor...The video direction adopts a wonderfully cinematic approach.” International Record Review, March 2014

DVD Video

Region: 0

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Arthaus Musik Barenboim La Scala Milan Ring Cycle - 101695

(DVD Video - 2 discs)

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Puccini: La fanciulla del West

Puccini: La fanciulla del West

from the Royal Swedish Opera House


Puccini himself described La fanciulla del West as his best and most important work on the path to a new orchestral idiom.

Director Christof Loy stages the opera as an early Hollywood Western and depicts the action surrounding the impossible but passionately erupting love story of Minnie and the most wanted criminal in the West as a psychologically finely honed character study of great suggestive power.

Exactly 101 years after its dazzling world premiere at New York’s Metropolitan Opera, Stockholm’s Royal Opera House presents an equally brilliant, modern-day interpretation of this rarely played opera with an outstanding cast.

Singing the lead role is Nina Stemme who is one of today’s best youthful-dramatic sopranos.

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, Spanish, Italian, Japanese

Booklet notes: English, German, French

Running time: 140 min

German FSK: 0

“Although her voice has a rather thick, un-Italianate sound, [Stemme] musters its heroic power impressively as the opera progresses, and her portrayal of Minnie as a tough cookie works well...[Antonenko's] tenor goes excitingly into overdrive as it rises above the stave...Lundgren's magnificently brooding Jack Rance dominates his scenes with ease.” Gramophone Magazine, November 2013

“The cast, orchestra and conductor have got the work musically right. Not only do Nina Stemme, Aleksandrs Antonenko and John Lundgren sing well... but the conductor Pier Giorgio Morandi moulds the score into a beautiful whole.” MusicWeb International, 12th February 2014

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EuroArts - 2072598

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Salzburg Festival 2012

Salzburg Festival 2012


Brahms:

Symphony No. 1 in C minor, Op. 68

Strauss, R:

Don Juan, Op. 20

Wagner:

Wesendonck-Lieder (5)

Nina Stemme (soprano)


This concert programme dedicated to the second half of the 19th Century was one of the highlights of the 2012 Salzburg Festival.

Mariss Jansons, chief conductor of the Concertgebouw Orchestra and winner of the Cannes Classical Award, and soprano Nina Stemme offer a “superlative concert experience” (Kurier).

Swedish soprano Nina Stemme is outstanding in her performance of Wagner’s Wesendonck-Lieder. Brilliant readings of Richard Strauss’ tone poem Don Juan and Johannes Brahms symphony No. 1 complete this extraordinary concert performance.

Picture format Blu-ray Disc: 1080i Full HD - 16:9

Sound format Blu-ray Disc: PCM Stereo, DTS-HD Master Audio 5.0

Region code: All (worldwide)

Booklet notes: English, German, French

Running time: 95 mins

“Gorgeous sounds also emerge during Wagner's Wesendonck Lieder, though they're mostly confined to the orchestra; their silky diminuendos are wonderful. Nina Stemme also shines when the dynamics are scaled back...As usual, the Blu-ray edition offers much greater visual sparkle.” BBC Music Magazine, November 2013 ***

Blu-ray Disc

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EuroArts - 2072624

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Normally: $33.75

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Beethoven: Fidelio, Op. 72

Beethoven: Fidelio, Op. 72


Jonas Kaufmann (Florestan), Nina Stemme (Leonore), Falk Struckmann (Pizarro), Christof Fischesser (Rocco), Rachel Harnisch (Marzelline), Christoph Strehl (Jaquino), Peter Mattei (Don Fernando), Juan Sebastian Acosta (Erste Gefangener), Levente Pall (Zweite Gefangener)

Lucerne Festival Orchestra & Arnold Schoenberg Chor, Claudio Abbado

Read Presto's complete review of this recording here.

Recorded live at the Lucerne Festival 2010 with the Festival Orchestra, this Fidelio is led by the legendary conductor Claudio Abbado − making this release a major operatic event.

The central tenor role of Florestan is known as one of the most demanding and difficult in all opera. For his first complete opera recording for Decca, Jonas Kaufmann, “the world’s greatest currently performing tenor” (London’s Daily and Sunday Express), delivers everything the role demands: fearless tone, peerless style, and heart-stopping dramatic intensity.

“Abbado’s command of the score and its structure is consummate, the atmosphere palpable through his perceptive application of orchestral colour. The detail he elicits from his hand-picked Lucerne Festival Orchestra is phenomenal, the blend of sonorities aglow, the clarity of texture refined with a masterly touch.” The Telegraph, 23rd June 2011 *****

“Abbado and his hand-picked Lucerne orchestra certainly do not disappoint here, as Beethoven’s epic score is delivered with drama and incandescence...Kaufmann’s thrilling Florestan emerges with a gut-wrenching cry from his dungeon. The set is worth sampling for him alone.” Sunday Times, 26th June 2011 ***

“Jonas Kaufmann’s first note alone is a good reason to buy this new recording of Beethoven’s stirring opera...The effect makes your jaw drop, your pulse pause, your hairs stand on end...Abbado conducts with magisterial but selfless understanding. In the overture alone (Beethoven’s punchy fourth version is used) you feel electricity and humanity in every jabbing rhythm and lyrically sculptured phrase.” The Times, 1st July 2011 ****

“this is a “modern” Fidelio in so far as it espouses lightly pointed rhythms, transparent textures and attention to detail – but it also captures the hallowed glow of Beethoven tradition...Interest for opera fans lies primarily in Jonas Kaufmann’s Florestan: his aria, beginning on a thread of sound, is as much a meditation as a cry from the depths.” Financial Times, 9th July 2011 ****

“Abbado's contribution is without doubt extraordinary – a loving if slow interpretation, noble in its anguish and elation...An exceptional Florestan – arguably the finest since Jon Vickers's – from Jonas Kaufmann wonderfully conveys his moral greatness as well as the extremity of his suffering.” The Guardian, 7th July 2011 ****

“Under Claudio Abbado’s assured direction, the Mahler Chamber and Lucerne Festival orchestras derive a fantastic amount of energy...[Stemme] manages to imbue her Fidelio/Leonore role with the requisite disguised anguish...High praise also must go to the spellbinding ensemble work...Jonas Kaufmann also impresses, most of all in his lachrymose opening to the second act...Due in part to the relative infrequency of recordings of Fidelio, this is one in particular to be cherished.” Daniel Ross, bbc.co.uk, 1st July 2011

“the instrumental performance is faultlessly sensitive to the drama it is illustrating. The singing is heroic, both from Nina Stemme as Leonore/Fidelio and Jonas Kaufmann as Florestan. Rachel Harnisch is a touching Marzelline, Falk Struckman a terrifying Don Pizarro.” The Independent on Sunday, 24th July 2011

“Abbado leads a viscerally charged performance that flies to the very heart of the matter...One of the many glories of this thrillingly articulated Fidelio is the playing of the basses and lower strings sharp-featured and black as the pit of Acheron...This is the best-conducted Fidelio since Furtwängler's; a joy to experience and a privilege to possess.” Gramophone Magazine, September 2011

“The real star of this performance...is the Lucerne Festival Orchestra, in whose hands the music seems to glow from within. The playing is thrilling throughout, with Claudio Abbado caressing every detail of Beethoven's score...The Arnold Schoenberg Choir rises to the occasion, too, producing hushed singing of great beauty in the Act 1 prisoners' chorus...Kaufmann is a commanding Florestan. His opening phrase as he lies in the depths of the dungeons is spine-tingling.” BBC Music Magazine, September 2011 ****

“Abbado brings elegance to everything he touches. In the event, Kaufmann is superb, Stemme sings with technical control and warmth of tone, and Abbado conducts with exemplary clarity.” Classic FM Magazine, October 2011 ***

“I could be in the minority when I state that I find this performance almost clinical...[Kaufmann] can do no wrong and, in fact, he does no wrong here, articulating his despair as well as his hope and desperation with great sincerity...Abbado is obviously going for a lean performance, and he succeeds; one hears things in both orchestra and vocal lines that are frequently smudged elsewhere.” International Record Review, September 2011

“this is a lean, chamber-sized account, every note precisely placed, but with enough punch for the drama to hit home...for superb technical playing, transparency of sound and with Stemme and Kaufmann in glorious voice, this is a Fidelio to treasure.” Opera Britannia, 6th October 2011

“From the opening flourishes of the overture, Abbado and his hand-picked festival orchestra arrest the attention...The ensemble-singing has the balance and synthesis which characterise the very best performances of Beethoven’s chamber-music...[Kaufmann's] first note alone is worth the price of the set...this is truly glorious, exhilarating music-making, and a superb document of one of the most thrilling live performances of 2010.” Katherine Cooper, Presto Classical, 20th June 2011

“My colleague Katherine would never forgive me if I didn't choose this live recording from the 2010 Lucerne Festival of Beethoven's only opera, conducted by Claudio Abbado and featuring the incomparable pairing of Nina Stemme as Leonore and Jonas Kaufmann as Florestan. His agonised cry of "Gott! Welch Dunkel hier!" after the slow orchestral build-up is astonishingly moving, and there's memorable support from Falk Struckmann as Pizarro and Christof Fischesser as Rocco.” James Longstaffe, Presto Classical

Presto Disc of the Week

20th June 2011

Presto Favourites

Recommended Recording

GGramophone Awards 2012

Best of Category - Opera

GGramophone Magazine

Disc of the Month - September 2011

Decca - 4782551

(CD - 2 discs)

$22.25

(also available to download from $20.75)

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Wagner: Tristan und Isolde

Wagner: Tristan und Isolde

Recorded live at Glyndebourne, Lewes, Sussex on 1st August and 6th August 2007.


Robert Gambill (Tristan), Nina Stemme (Isolde), Katarina Karnéus (Brangäne), Bo Skovhus (Kurwenal), René Pape (König Marke), Stephen Gadd (Melot), Timothy Robinson (Hirt/Junger Seemann), Richard Mosley-Evans (Steuermann)

The Glyndebourne Chorus & London Philharmonic Orchestra, Jirí Belohlávek (conductor) & Nikolaus Lehnhoff (stage director)

Note: This Blu-ray Disc (BD) is not compatible with standard DVD players

Glyndebourne’s celebrated production of Nikolaus Lehnhoff’s Tristan und Isolde is a supremely intelligent achievement; gravely beautiful, haunting and meditative, it is deeply reflective rather than visceral, fortified by Roland Aeschlimann's stunningly effective set, a womb-like space through which the protagonists move like gods. Conductor Jirí Belohlávek mirrors Lehnhoff's approach in his sophisticated plumbing of the score's depths, with every shift in texture carefully laid bare by an inspired London Philharmonic Orchestra. Nina Stemme's Isolde and Robert Gambill's Tristan, both gloriously lyrical, are matched by superb performances from René Pape as the betrayed and vulnerable King Marke and Bo Skovhus as Kurwenal, deeply touching in his helpless devotion to Tristan. This High Definition recording of a production of uncommon intimacy reveals the opera's music and drama in a new light.

Picture: 1080i High Definition / 16:9

Sound: 2.0 & 5.0 Dolby TrueHD

Video codec: AVC/MPEG-4

Disc size: 2 x BD50

Subtitles: EN/FR/DE/ES/IT Menu language: EN

Region code: All regions

Running time: Approx 358 mins

Bonus material:

Illustrated synopsis & cast gallery

Do I hear the light? - a film by Reiner E. Moritz

Artist biographies.

‘On the set’ - a slide show of the set being built.

‘Trimborn on Tristan’ – a talk by Richard Trimborn

‘I don’t think that I have ever witnessed a more perfect realisation of a Wagner opera than this superb Tristan und Isolde. …[Jirí Belohlávek] is scrupulous with the score, and takes his time over it: the pauses and silences are immense and there is no factitious attempt to whip up excitement by speeding. …a great and unforgettable occasion’ The Daily Telegraph

“A performance realised to Glyndebourne's highest standards - the chorus and stage brass are Bayreuth-level, the casting immaculate (they can all really sing these parts) and Belohlávek's conducting balanced with a Goodall-like attention to the filigree detail of Wagner's new-wave scoring” Gramophone Magazine, August 2008

“Stemme's fiery Irish princess is even finer than on the Domingo CD… Gambill's burly Tristan projects a darker, more resigned intensity… Pape's black-voiced Marke rightly dominates the stage… Karneus is a passionate, lusciously sung Brangäne. Lehnhoff's Glyndebourne production doesn't outclass Daniel Barenboim's magnificent video... But those looking for a Tristan with warmth and immediacy will find it certainly shares Barenboim's benchmark recommendation.” BBC Music Magazine, March 2008 *****

“I don’t think that I have ever witnessed a more perfect realisation of a Wagner opera than this superb Tristan und Isolde. …[Jirí Belohlávek] is scrupulous with the score, and takes his time over it: the pauses and silences are immense and there is no factitious attempt to whip up excitement by speeding. …a great and unforgettable occasion” The Telegraph

“a performance realised to Glyndebourne's highest standards – the chorus and stage brass are Bayreuthlevel, the casting immaculate (they can all really sing these parts), and Belohlávek's conducting balanced with a Goodall-like attention to the filigree detail of Wagner's new-wave scoring. Old-style analyses of the music used to talk about the 'glance' motif. Lehnhoff's staging deploys a series of heartbreaking glances: Stemme's Isolde when Karnéus's Brangäne tells her she's taken the love draught, Stemme again when Tristan arrives in Act 2, Pape's Marke as he sees the lovers together and, at BrokebackMountain-level, Skovhus's Kurwenal as he cradles Gambill's Tristan then breaks away, half in fear of his lord's death, half in fear of his feelings for him. In fact, has a Tristan ever been so deeply loved by his lady and squire as here, or felt so wretched at betraying his king? And is Skovhus actually the greatest Kurwenal yet recorded? Roland Aeschlimann provides a geometrically attractive whorl of a standing set, concentric wooden circles telescoping towards a constantly varied horizon: a ship, a spaceship, everywhere, nowhere – perfect. The lighting (Robin Carter and Aeschlimann) has a genuine physical presence and seems to reinvent the colour blue. At the point of Isolde's almost belated arrival in Act 3, a surreal, Ingmar Bergman-like atmosphere permeates events: she arrives from behind on high as a figure of death and wraps him in a black cloak, while Skovhus's poignant Kurwenal gets a non-realistic, Brechtian centre-stage for his fights and death” Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010

Presto Favourites

Recommended Recording

Building a Library

First Choice (Blu-ray) - June 2011

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Opus Arte Glyndebourne - OABD7039D

(Blu-ray - 2 discs)

$39.50

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