Fabio Luisi

Conductor

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Mercadante: Francesca da Rimini

Mercadante: Francesca da Rimini

42° Festival della Valle d’Itria, Martina Franca, Italy


Leonor Bonilla (Francesca), Aya Wakizono (Paolo), Merto Süngü (Lanciotto), Antonio Di Matteo (Guido), Larisa Martinez (Isaura) & Ivan Ayon Rivas (Guelfo)

Orchestra Internazionale d’Italia, Chorus of the Transylvania State & Philharmonic Orchestra of Cluj-Napoca, Fabio Luisi

First recording and world première performance.

Director, Sets and Costume Designer Pier Luigi Pizzi

Choreographer Gheorghe Iancu

Written almost two centuries ago by Saverio Mercadante, coveted by many theatres of the day, Francesca da Rimini was, in fact, never staged. Every time it was scheduled for performance, something happened and it got canceled. A long series of incidents prevented it from reaching the stage for as many as 185 years. Its forgotten manuscript, which was only known for its ill-starred fate, suddenly re-emerged five years ago in Madrid, teh city where it was to have been premiered in 1831. The soprano Leonor Bonilla is quite impressive in the part of the protagonist: she portrays the character's psychological frailty as well as her determination wtih a steely vocal technique, spinning out incredible modulations, displaying strong and dazzling vocalizations, easily soaring into the high register and flaunting such an attractive, casual and poignant stage presence that she even dares moving some dance steps with the corps de ballet. Aya Wakizono is an admirable Paolo: endowed with a superb mezzo voice, she seeks and achieves consistency throughout the range, is virtuosic in the coloratura, and fluent. No less demanding is the part of the tenor Lanciotto, with its fearful leaps and ornamentation worth of the Neapolitan Rossini: Mert Sungu might in time get rid of a touch of harshness here and there, but already now he can tackle all the difficulties of the part with a timbric quality and an expressively worth of note…

Sung in: Italian

Video Format/ Aspect ratio: 1080i60 – 1 BD 50 NTSC – 16:9 Audio Format: PCM STEREO 2.0 / DTS 5.1 HD

Master Audio Subtitles: Ita, Ing, Fre, Ger, Jap, Kor

Region code: 0 – All regions

Recording date & place: July 2016 –Palazzo Ducale, Martina Franca, Italy

Duration: 200 min.

Notes: Italian / English

“Fabio Luisi gets excellent playing from his orchestra – warm, tender strings in the Act 1 finale, fine obbligatos – and the chorus sings lustily. And the solo singing is stupendous. Merto Sungu is thrilling, Leonor Bonilla sings with bell-like clarity, with good coloratura and trills, and the Japanese Aya Wakizono is a mezzo in a thousand” Gramophone Magazine, May 2017

“the opera is …extremely well conducted by Fabio Luisi, who has the exact measure of style and substance. In the title role, the Spanish soprano Leonor Bonilla can do anything she pleases, it seems, with her pliable, expressive lyric soprano – an instrument that seemingly has no flaws and which she uses with consistent imagination” Opera, July 2017

Released or re-released in last 6 months

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Berg: Wozzeck

Berg: Wozzeck


Christian Gerhaher (Wozzeck), Brandon Jovanovich (Drum Major), Mauro Peter (Andres), Wolfgang Ablinger-Sperrhacke (Captain), Lars Woldt (Doctor) & Gun-Brit Barkmin (Marie)

Chor der Oper Zurich & Philharmonia Zurich, Fabio Luisi (conductor) & Andreas Homoki (stage director)

The soldier Wozzeck flits through a world that he is unable to decipher. The Doctor torments him with absurd medical experiments; the Captain humiliates and ridicules him. And Wozzeck’s lover, Marie, with whom he has a child, cuckolds him with the Drum Major. Wozzeck becomes a murderer, stabbing Marie to death.

Georg Büchner’s drama fragment, on which Alban Berg based his first opera, is an unflinching case study of social injustice and human suffering. But it is also a grotesque piece that thrives on exaggeration – and in which only a fine line separates the unfathomable from the ridiculous. Accordingly, director Andreas Homoki forgoes all realism. His nightmarishly radical production is inspired by puppet theatre. Christian Gerhaher’s role début as Wozzeck can only be described as sensational: his capacity for vocal and dramatic subtlety is simply breath‐taking. At the rostrum of the Philharmonia Zurich, Fabio Luisi explores both the expressionistic and the more intimate aspects, reminiscent of chamber music, in Berg’s seminal score.

Picture Format: NTSC 16:9, Full HD

Sound Formats: DTS HD Master Audio, PCM Stereo

Region Code: 0 (worldwide)

Running Time: 100:58 min

Disc Format: BD 25

Subtitles: German (original), French, English, Japanese, Korean

“This is a finely honed production that follows its premise to an absurdist conclusion with slick theatricality and dispassionate zeal...All sentimentalism is banished here. So, largely, is the opera’s plea for justice and compassion. It is left to Christian Gerhaher’s Wozzeck to fight that battle, which he does with formidable diction and great lyrical beauty, offering, where he can, a still centre in the tumult.” Gramophone Magazine, November 2016

“While the Lieder-like beauty of Gerhaher’s singing Is matchless – he can act too – this is no star vehicle. It is ensemble work of the highest order…the relationships are brilliantly drawn, and the murder of Marie is more shocking for its surrealism. The string and woodwind solos are incisive, and the blossoming of the orchestral interludes as directed by Luisi is almost indecently lovely” BBC Music Magazine, Christmas 2016 *****

“This is a triumph – gripping and moving. The performance of Christian Gerhaher is outstanding, but there is also much else to admire and recommend.” MusicWeb International, October 2016

“Something of a triumph for all concerned.” Opera, May 2017

GGramophone Awards 2017

Finalist - Opera

GGramophone Magazine

DVD/Blu-ray of the Month - November 2016

BBC Music Magazine Awards 2017

DVD/Blu-ray Winner

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Summer Opera Sale

Accentus Music - ACC10363

(Blu-ray)

Normally: $33.75

Special: $27.00

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Berg: Wozzeck

Berg: Wozzeck


Christian Gerhaher (Wozzeck), Brandon Jovanovich (Drum Major), Mauro Peter (Andres), Wolfgang Ablinger-Sperrhacke (Captain), Lars Woldt (Doctor) & Gun-Brit Barkmin (Marie)

Chor der Oper Zurich & Philharmonia Zurich, Fabio Luisi (conductor) & Andreas Homoki (stage director)

The soldier Wozzeck flits through a world that he is unable to decipher. The Doctor torments him with absurd medical experiments; the Captain humiliates and ridicules him. And Wozzeck’s lover, Marie, with whom he has a child, cuckolds him with the Drum Major. Wozzeck becomes a murderer, stabbing Marie to death.

Georg Büchner’s drama fragment, on which Alban Berg based his first opera, is an unflinching case study of social injustice and human suffering. But it is also a grotesque piece that thrives on exaggeration – and in which only a fine line separates the unfathomable from the ridiculous. Accordingly, director Andreas Homoki forgoes all realism. His nightmarishly radical production is inspired by puppet theatre. Christian Gerhaher’s role début as Wozzeck can only be described as sensational: his capacity for vocal and dramatic subtlety is simply breath‐taking. At the rostrum of the Philharmonia Zurich, Fabio Luisi explores both the expressionistic and the more intimate aspects, reminiscent of chamber music, in Berg’s seminal score.

Picture Format: NTSC 16:9

Sound Formats: PCM Stereo, Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS 5.1

Region Code: 0 (worldwide)

Running Time: 100:58 min

Disc Format: DVD‐9

Subtitles: German (original), French, English, Japanese, Korean

“This is a triumph – gripping and moving. The performance of Christian Gerhaher is outstanding, but there is also much else to admire and recommend.” MusicWeb International, October 2016

“This is a finely honed production that follows its premise to an absurdist conclusion with slick theatricality and dispassionate zeal...All sentimentalism is banished here. So, largely, is the opera’s plea for justice and compassion. It is left to Christian Gerhaher’s Wozzeck to fight that battle, which he does with formidable diction and great lyrical beauty, offering, where he can, a still centre in the tumult.” Gramophone Magazine, November 2016

“While the Lieder-like beauty of Gerhaher’s singing Is matchless – he can act too – this is no star vehicle. It is ensemble work of the highest order…the relationships are brilliantly drawn, and the murder of Marie is more shocking for its surrealism. The string and woodwind solos are incisive, and the blossoming of the orchestral interludes as directed by Luisi is almost indecently lovely” BBC Music Magazine, Christmas 2016 *****

“Something of a triumph for all concerned.” Opera, May 2017

GGramophone Awards 2017

Finalist - Opera

GGramophone Magazine

DVD of the Month - November 2016

BBC Music Magazine Awards 2017

DVD/Blu-ray Winner

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

Summer Opera Sale

Accentus Music - ACC20363

(DVD Video)

Normally: $28.25

Special: $22.60

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Verdi: Macbeth

Verdi: Macbeth


Željko Luèiæ (Macbeth), René Pape (Banquo), Anna Netrebko (Lady Macbeth), Claudia Waite (Lady-in-Waiting to Lady Macbeth), Christopher Job (A Servant of Macbeth), Raymond Renault (Duncan, King of Scotland), Noah Baetge (Malcolm, Duncan’s Son), Joseph Calleja (Macduff, Thane of Fife), Moritz Linn (Fleance, Banquo’s Son), Richard Bernstein (A Murderer), Seth Malkin (A Herald), James Courtney (A Doctor), David Crawford (A Warrior), Ashley Emerson (A Bloody Child), Jihee Kim (A Crowned Child)

The Metropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus, Fabio Luisi, Adrian Noble (dir.)

An unforgettable performance of Anna Netrebko at the MET now on DVD/BR!

Outstanding press acclaim for her performance:

New York Observer stated: “.. a superstar cast ... the most potent: Anna Netrebko's ferociously exciting star turn as Lady Macbeth ... a "demented" performance, one so exciting it propels both artist and audience figuratively to the brink of madness.”

While the New York Times writes: “Lady Macbeth is causing a sensation at the Metropolitan Opera ... This was Ms. Netrebko's night”

This MET performance featured not only an astonishing Anna Netrebko, but also a superstar-cast with artists like Željko Luèiæ, René Pape, Joseph Calleja and a brilliantly performing MET Orchestra and Chorus conducted by Fabio Luisi.

The DVD includes bonus material with artist interviews and backstage footage:

- 2 intros / Host: Anita Rachvelishvili

- Acts I and II (1’26)

- Act III and IV (0’15)

Backstage at the Met with host Anita Rachvelishvili (c. 15’)

- Interview: Anna Netrebko (2’19)

- "Gallery Met Shorts" (2'03)

- Interview: Željko Luèiæ (1’27)

- Interview: Joseph Calleja and René Pape (3’12)

- Interview: Donald Palumbo and David Frye (3’02)

- Interview: Fabio Luisi (2’28)

“[Noble's] direction is frequently gripping, aided by two magnificent central performances. Anna Netrebko's darker soprano of recent years is not perfectly suited to Verdi's heavier roles...it was a performance matched by Željko Luèiæ's Macbeth. His velvety timbre and stylish phrasing mark him out as one of the few Verdi baritones today worthy of the description...Luisi revels inthe score's dark tinta.” Gramophone Magazine, January 2016

Presto Discs of 2015

Finalist

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

Summer Opera Sale

DG - 0735222

(DVD Video - 2 discs)

Normally: $20.75

Special: $16.60

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Richard Strauss: Works for Cello

Richard Strauss: Works for Cello


Strauss, R:

Romance for cello & orchestra in F major, AV 75

Louis Lortie (piano)

Don Quixote, Op. 35

Staatskapelle Dresden

Fabio Luisi

Cello Sonata in F major, Op. 6

Louis Lortie (piano)


Jan Vogler (cello)

Sony - 88697404182

(CD)

$8.50

(also available to download from $10.00)

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Verdi: Rigoletto

Verdi: Rigoletto

Live from Dresden Opera


Željko Lučić (Rigoletto), Diana Damrau (Gilda), Juan Diego Florez (Il Duca di Mantova), Georg Zeppenfeld (Sparafucile), Christa Mayer (Maddalena), Angela Liebold (Giovanna), Markus Marquardt (Monterone), Matthias Henneberg (Marullo), Oliver Ringelhahn (Borsa), Markus Butter (Conte di Ceprano), Kyung-Hae Kang (Contessa di Ceprano)

Sachsische Staatskapelle Dresden, Fabio Luisi

In June 2008, Giuseppe Verdi temporarily replaced Richard Strauss as the presiding genius at Dresden’s Semperoper as baritone Željko Lucic, soprano Diana Damrau and tenor Juan Diego Flórez came together for a new production of Rigoletto, directed by Nikolaus Lehnhoff and conducted by Fabio Luisi, chief conductor of the Semperoper, Dresden, General Music Director-elect of the Zurich Opera, and Principal Guest Conductor of the Metropolitan Opera.

“Lehnhoff's production of Rigoletto is a ferocious, if uneven affair, that awkwardly positions the opera between religious drama and psychopathology...vocally [Damrau and Lucic have] rarely been bettered, while Flórez, cast against his squeaky-clean image, is insidiously sensual as the Duke. There's powerhouse conducting from Fabio Luisi, too.” The Guardian, 9th December 2010 ****

“Flórez uses his lighter-than-usual tenor to sing the role with high-wattage brilliance...the outstanding vocal performance comes from Diana Damrau as Gilda. More than Flórez, she sounds fully inside the role, shaping "Caro nome" with a control of tone-colour and phrasing that makes entirely her own...Zeljka Lucic brings dignity to the role of Rigoletto with his warm expansive singing.” Gramophone Magazine, January 2010

“Musically, the show is spectacular...Juan Diego Flórez is wonderfully sure of himself in every way...[Damrau] is no soubrette; the voice has body and power, her breath control is superb, and there is never a worry about the proper landing of a high note...[Lucic is] a superb Verdi baritone...understanding the composer's long lines and dramatic instincts” International Record Review, December 2010

“The singers are a distinguished bunch, with Željko Lučić the most sympathetic and pathetic Rigoletto I have seen or heard...[Damrau] sings gorgeously, and her acting is first-rate. Juan Diego Flórez makes a convincing Duke...His narrow-bore voice turns out to be ideal for conveying the predatory hedonism of the character. In the Sparafucile of Georg Zeppenfeld we encounter a star in the making” BBC Music Magazine ***

“Filmed live at the Dresden Opera in 2008, Nikolaus Lehnhoff's production updates the action to the 1970s; Diana Damrau (all seething hormones and naive sensuality) and Juan Diego Florez (smarmy but endearing) makes a light-voiced but compelling pair of lovers, whilst Serbian baritone Željko Lučić balances savagery and tenderness to perfection as the tormented jester” Katherine Cooper, Presto Classical

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Recommended Recording

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Erato - 6418689

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Strauss: Eine Alpensinfonie & Four Last Songs

Strauss: Eine Alpensinfonie & Four Last Songs


Strauss, R:

Eine Alpensinfonie, Op. 64

Vier letzte Lieder

Anja Harteros (soprano)


Sony - 88697558392

(CD)

$9.00

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Verdi: Requiem

Verdi: Requiem


Krassimira Stoyanova (soprano). Veronica Simeoni (mezzo-soprano), Francesco Meli (tenor), Georg Zeppenfeld (bass)

Ballett Zürich, Philharmonia Zürich, Chor und Zusatzchor der Oper Zürich, Fabio Luisi, Christian Spuck (choreographer)

With the „Messa da Requiem“, Christian Spuck brought one of Verdi’s key works to the stage. In a large-scale co-production by the Ballett and Oper Zürich, the German choreographer and director ventured to portray an unusual interpretation of Verdi’s funeral mass in his scenic-choreographic production.

36 dancers, the choir and supplementary choir of the Opernhaus Zürich as well as four highly acclaimed soloists joined together under the direction of Fabio Luisi for 13 wide-ranging scenes dedicated to one of the most fundamental themes of humanity. Christian Spuck does not seek a mere religious interpretation of the liturgical text. Instead, he is interested in focusing on people who, in their vulnerability and helplessness, are in the search for comfort. In poetic tableaux he deals with basic human emotions and focuses on the feelings of fear, rage, pain, sadness and the search for redemption.

Released or re-released in last 6 months

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

Accentus Music - ACC20392

(DVD Video)

Normally: $28.25

Special: $25.25

Scheduled for release on 1 September 2017. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

Verdi: Requiem

Verdi: Requiem


Krassimira Stoyanova (soprano). Veronica Simeoni (mezzo-soprano), Francesco Meli (tenor), Georg Zeppenfeld (bass)

Ballett Zürich, Philharmonia Zürich, Chor und Zusatzchor der Oper Zürich, Fabio Luisi, Christian Spuck (direction and choreography)

With the „Messa da Requiem“, Christian Spuck brought one of Verdi’s key works to the stage. In a large-scale co-production by the Ballett and Oper Zürich, the German choreographer and director ventured to portray an unusual interpretation of Verdi’s funeral mass in his scenic-choreographic production.

36 dancers, the choir and supplementary choir of the Opernhaus Zürich as well as four highly acclaimed soloists joined together under the direction of Fabio Luisi for 13 wide-ranging scenes dedicated to one of the most fundamental themes of humanity. Christian Spuck does not seek a mere religious interpretation of the liturgical text. Instead, he is interested in focusing on people who, in their vulnerability and helplessness, are in the search for comfort. In poetic tableaux he deals with basic human emotions and focuses on the feelings of fear, rage, pain, sadness and the search for redemption.

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Accentus Music - ACC10392

(Blu-ray)

Normally: $46.00

Special: $40.50

Scheduled for release on 1 September 2017. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

Mercadante: Francesca da Rimini

Mercadante: Francesca da Rimini

42° Festival della Valle d’Itria, Martina Franca, Italy


Leonor Bonilla (Francesca), Aya Wakizono (Paolo), Merto Süngü (Lanciotto), Antonio Di Matteo (Guido), Larisa Martinez (Isaura) & Ivan Ayon Rivas (Guelfo)

Orchestra Internazionale d’Italia, Chorus of the Transylvania State & Philharmonic Orchestra of Cluj-Napoca, Fabio Luisi

First recording and world première performance.

Director, Sets and Costume Designer Pier Luigi Pizzi

Choreographer Gheorghe Iancu

Written almost two centuries ago by Saverio Mercadante, coveted by many theatres of the day, Francesca da Rimini was, in fact, never staged. Every time it was scheduled for performance, something happened and it got canceled. A long series of incidents prevented it from reaching the stage for as many as 185 years. Its forgotten manuscript, which was only known for its ill-starred fate, suddenly re-emerged five years ago in Madrid, teh city where it was to have been premiered in 1831. The soprano Leonor Bonilla is quite impressive in the part of the protagonist: she portrays the character's psychological frailty as well as her determination wtih a steely vocal technique, spinning out incredible modulations, displaying strong and dazzling vocalizations, easily soaring into the high register and flaunting such an attractive, casual and poignant stage presence that she even dares moving some dance steps with the corps de ballet. Aya Wakizono is an admirable Paolo: endowed with a superb mezzo voice, she seeks and achieves consistency throughout the range, is virtuosic in the coloratura, and fluent. No less demanding is the part of the tenor Lanciotto, with its fearful leaps and ornamentation worth of the Neapolitan Rossini: Mert Sungu might in time get rid of a touch of harshness here and there, but already now he can tackle all the difficulties of the part with a timbric quality and an expressively worth of note…

Sung in: Italian

Video Format/ Aspect ratio: NTSC – 16:9

Audio Format: PCM 2.0 - Dolby digital 5.1

Subtitles: Ita, Eng, Fre, Ger, Giap, Kor

Region code: 0 – All regions

Recording date & place: July 2016 – Palazzo Ducale, Martina Franca, Italy

Duration: 200 min.

Notes: Italian / English

“Fabio Luisi gets excellent playing from his orchestra – warm, tender strings in the Act 1 finale, fine obbligatos – and the chorus sings lustily. And the solo singing is stupendous. Merto Sungu is thrilling, Leonor Bonilla sings with bell-like clarity, with good coloratura and trills, and the Japanese Aya Wakizono is a mezzo in a thousand” Gramophone Magazine, May 2017

“An excellent cast brings out the best in Mercadante’s work. Leonor Bonilla as Francesca sings in a bright, clear, and very agile voice. The ballet episodes are simple and imaginative.” MusicWeb International, July 2017

“the opera is …extremely well conducted by Fabio Luisi, who has the exact measure of style and substance. In the title role, the Spanish soprano Leonor Bonilla can do anything she pleases, it seems, with her pliable, expressive lyric soprano – an instrument that seemingly has no flaws and which she uses with consistent imagination” Opera, July 2017

Released or re-released in last 6 months

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

Summer Opera Sale

Dynamic - 37753

(DVD Video - 2 discs)

Normally: $33.75

Special: $27.00

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.

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