Blu-ray Discs

Gaetano Donizetti (1797-1848)

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Donizetti: Anna Bolena

Donizetti: Anna Bolena


Anna Netrebko (Anna Bolena), Elina Garanca (Giovanna Seymour), Ildebrando D'Arcangelo (Enrico), Francesco Meli (Percy), Dan Paul Dumitrescu (Lord Rochefort), Elisabeth Kulman (Smeton), Peter Jelosits (Hervey)

Chor der Wiener Staatsoper & Orchester der Wiener Staatsoper, Evelino Pidò

With her sensational role debut at the Vienna State Opera, superstar diva Anna Netrebko displays a performance of rare vocal and dramatic power. The Russian soprano sings the role of the unjustly accused second wife of British King Henry VIII, ‘veering between indignant fury and tender righteousness’ and demonstrating a new level of confidence in her technique with excellent ‘passagework, particularly in trills, and seamless runs even to the lowest notes’ (Opera News).

The performance also stars DG mezzo-soprano Elīna Garanča, in ‘a fantastic display of bel canto’ (Opera News) as Anna's rival Giovanna Seymour. Ildebrando D’Arcangelo brings his beautifully dark tone to the role of Enrico and young Italian tenor Francesco Meli sings the demanding role of Lord Percy with a ‘youthful virility’ (Agence France Press), promising great things for the future. On the podium Evelino Pidò 'drew playing of unusual precision and refinement...making every note matter' (Financial Times)

Subtitles: Italian (Orig. language), English, German, French, Spanish

“It's no accident that Netrebko's better forays into bel canto have come with Garanca by her side, inspiring her to some lovely singing. Their voices blend beautifully...I find her a welcome counterpoint to Netrebko's passionate queen...Netrebko emerges from the challenge triumphantly. The sincerity in her performance is admirable, while the darker vocal qualities she possesses suit the character well.” International Record Review, May 2012

“[Netrebko] gives a demonstration of characterisation and bel canto vocal virtuosity that is second to none, Callas included...Garanca’s is a consummate interpretation by an artist at the top of her game...D'Arcangelo is a tall, handsome and seductive Enrico whose smooth singing only lacks a little lower extension... Pidò adds to his reputation in this music with a well-paced and phrased interpretation” MusicWeb International, May 2012

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

DG - 0734728

(Blu-ray)

$23.50

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Donizetti: Anna Bolena

Donizetti: Anna Bolena


Federico Benetti (Enrico VIII, King of England), Marta Torbidoni (Anna Bolena, his wife), Laura Polverelli (Giovanna Seymour, Anna’s lady-in-waiting), Dionisos Tsantinis (Lord Rochefort, Anna’s brother), Marín García (Lord Percy Moisés), Martina Belli (Smeton, musician) & Carlo Allemano (Sir Hervey, court official)

Belcanto Chorus, Europa Galante, Fabio Biondi (conductor) & Cesare Scarton (director)

Set designer - Michele Della Cioppa

Costume designer - Anna Biagiotti

Light designer - Corrado Rea

This production of Anna Bolena faithfully meets the musical vision proposed by Fabio Biondi. The mise-en-scène, therefore, excludes any explicit reference to the plot’s historical time, and the events have been set at the beginning of the 1800s, when Donizetti’s opera was premièred.

This shift in time was meant to match, visually, the important musical reconstruction made by Fabio Biondi: just as he tapered down the orchestral forces to 19th-century proportions and conformed to the performing practice of the day – using, for example, the fortepiano as a concertante instrument, which created surprisingly new sound effects compared to traditional versions, often still too linked to the late-romantic symphonic model – we have transformed the world of Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII into a metaphor of 19th-century society, in which an unhappy woman, an ill-fated, condemned and spurned woman earns the crown of martyrdom and the halo of sainthood.

Sung in: Italian

Video Format/ Aspect ratio: 1080i60 – 1 BD 50 – 16/9

Audio Format: LPCM 2.0 / DTS-HD MASTER AUDIO 5.1

Subtitles: Fre, Eng, Ger, Ita, Jap

Notes: Ita / Eng

Region code: 0 – All regions

Recording date & place: September, 2013 – Rieti, Italy

Duration: 163 Min

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Dynamic - 57687

(Blu-ray)

$35.75

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.

Donizetti: Classic Comedies Box Set

Donizetti: Classic Comedies Box Set


Donizetti:

Don Pasquale

Recorded live at the Glyndebourne Festival 2013

Alessandro Corbelli (Don Pasquale), Danielle de Niese (Norina), Nikolay Borchev (Malatesta), Alek Shrader (Ernesto), James Platt (A Notary), Anna-Marie Sullivan (Servant)

Enrique Mazzola (conductor) & Mariame Clément (director)

L'elisir d'amore

Recorded live at Glyndebourne Opera House, East Sussex, United Kingdom, in August 2009

Ekaterina Siurina (Adina), Peter Auty (Nemorino), Alfredo Daza (Belcore), Luciano di Pasquale (Dulcamara), Eliana Pretorian (Giannetta)

Maurizio Benini (conductor) & Annabel Arden (director)


From fake potions and feigned emotions to the follies of youth and the vulnerability of age, this special set brings together two of Donizetti's greatest comedies, L'elisir d'amore and Don Pasquale, charming works packed with musical wit and in which the composer looks beyond the archetypes of the buffa tradition to create complex, highly individual characters. Both operas are brought to life in sparkling Glyndebourne productions, with first-class singing from such noted artists as Alessandro Corbelli, Danielle di Niese and Ekaterina Siurina, and expert bel canto conducting from the pit.

Running time: 4 hours 23 minutes

Subtitles: EN/FR/DE/ES/IT/KO

Sound format: 2.0LPCM + 5.1(5.0) DTS

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Opus Arte Glyndebourne - OABD7170BD

(Blu-ray - 2 discs)

$41.50

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.

Donizetti: Don Pasquale

Donizetti: Don Pasquale

Recorded live at the Glyndebourne Festival 2013


Alessandro Corbelli (Don Pasquale), Danielle de Niese (Norina), Nikolay Borchev (Malatesta), Alek Shrader (Ernesto), James Platt (A Notary), Anna-Marie Sullivan (Servant)

Glyndebourne Festival Opera, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Enrique Mazzola (conductor) & Mariame Clément (director)

One of the reasons why Donizetti's Don Pasquale is regarded as a cornerstone of the Italian comic opera tradition is because its characters are no mere commedia dell'arte stereotypes, but complex, vulnerable human beings. This is brought to the fore in Mariame Clément's sensitive and perceptive production, which was hailed by the Financial Times as a 'Glyndebourne classic'.

Acclaimed buffo baritone Alessandro Corbelli sings the title role 'with just the right degree of lugubriousness', while Danielle de Niese, one of today's most sought-after sopranos, is an 'engaging' and 'irresistible' Norina (The Telegraph).

Bel canto specialist Enrique Mazzola conducts with flair and panache.

Extra features: Behind the Curtain, Danielle de Niese introduction, Staging the Opera and a cast gallery.

Running time: 128 minutes

Subtitles: EN/FR/DE/KO

Sound format: 2.0LPCM + 5.1(5.0) DTS

“a straightforward production that eschews visual gags and focuses on the characters...Any recording with Alessandro Corbelli in the title-role has to be worth investigating and his playing of the old curmudgeon...is Italian comic opera at its most sophisticated...de Niese creates a brilliant characterisation...Mazzola gets playing of vitality out of the LPO.” Gramophone Magazine, September 2014

“de Niese has done nothing better than her portrayal of Norina: she looks gorgeous, of course, but the sharp and glassy edge that sometimes vitiates her singing of Mozart proves an asset when she’s playing a manipulative gold-digger...this is a warmly relaxed yet sharp performance that proves irresistibly entertaining.” The Telegraph, 6th June 2014 *****

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Opus Arte Glyndebourne - OABD7144D

(Blu-ray)

$35.75

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.

Donizetti: L'elisir d'amore

Donizetti: L'elisir d'amore

Recorded live at Glyndebourne Opera House, East Sussex, United Kingdom, in August 2009.


Ekaterina Siurina (Adina), Peter Auty (Nemorino), Alfredo Daza (Belcore), Luciano di Pasquale (Dulcamara), Eliana Pretorian (Giannetta)

London Philharmonic Orchestra & The Glyndebourne Chorus,, Maurizio Benini (conductor) & Annabel Arden (director)

Acclaimed Italian conductor Maurizio Benini makes his Glyndebourne debut in Donizetti’s intoxicating and deeply touching opera, whose fast-moving comic story unfolds the romantic rivalry between penniless farmhand and bumptious soldier, both vying for the love of Adina. Will the bogus Dr Dulcamara’s potion – the elixir of love – help farmhand Nemorino win her heart? Peter Auty takes the role of Nemorino with Ekaterina Siurina as Adina. Recorded in High Definition and true surround sound.

“It is a beautifully achieved piece of work. … Peter Auty’s Nemorino is world-class in his vocal accomplishment and touching presentation of the character’s plight. Alfredo Daza sounds exactly the right notes of God’s gift to women bumptiousness and fundamental decency with his good-looking, healthy sounding Sergeant Belcore. Luciano Di Pasquale hits the spot as the fake potion seller Dulcamara, bringing colour and vivacity to his every appearance. The chorus are marvellous. Maurizio Benini maintains lively music-making in the pit.” The Stage

Extra features:

Illustrated synopsis

Cast gallery

Running time 129 mins

Region code All regions

Picture format 16:9 Anamorphic

Sound format 2.0 LPCM & 5.0 DTS

Menu language EN

Subtitles EN/FR/DE/ES/IT

“An enchanting account. Set in Mussolini's Italy...it is wonderfully cast and a perfect team effort.” BBC Music Magazine, Christmas 2010 *****

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Opus Arte Glyndebourne - OABD7057D

(Blu-ray)

$35.75

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Donizetti: L'elisir d'amore

Donizetti: L'elisir d'amore

Live from the Vienna State Opera production - April 2005


Rolando Villazón (Nemorino), Anna Netrebko (Adina), Leo Nucci (Belcore), Ildebrando d'Arcangelo (Dulcamara), Inna Los (Giannetta)

Orchester & Chor der Wiener Staatsoper, Alfred Eschwé

Rolando Villazón as Nemorino exhibits a real gift for comic acting, manipulating his rubber face into dozens of hilarious poses, flawlessly turning stock comic gestures into laugh-out-loud moments, and even juggling apples with the panache of a circus performer. More important, he uses his lyric tenor to sing the part with impressive subtlety, suggesting Nemorino's desperation while singing of his love for Adina. His big show-stopper, "Una furtiva lagrima," features melting pianissimos and a breathtaking decrescendo in its final phrase. Netrebko's Adina is every bit as good, with deft acting and a lovely lyric soprano voice that makes you understand why she's the only girl for Nemorino.

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Erato - 2564605573

(Blu-ray)

$19.50

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Donizetti: L'elisir d'amore

Donizetti: L'elisir d'amore


Miah Persson (Adina), Rolando Villazón (Nemorino), Ildebrando D'Arcangelo (Dulcamara), Roman Trekel (Belcore), Regula Mühlemann (Giannetta)

Balthasar-Neumann-Choir and Ensemble, Pablo Heras-Casado

Stage Director: Rolando Villazón

This marks Rolando Villazón’s directorial debut in a dual-role: stage director and star singer (main role Nemorino) at the same time, and it is a clear WINNER

Inspired by the cartoon character Lucky Luke and the Spaghetti Western-tradition, the tenor’s staging for the Baden-Baden Festspielhaus is not only a film studio in the thirties but also a Western at the same time.

Lead by the dynamic young conductor Pablo Heras-Casado, who “…conducts very singer friendly” (Online Musik Magazine)

Extraordinary visual production, and one of the most memorable European operatic events of 2012.

Picture format: 1080i / 60i / 16:9 / colour

Audio Format: PCM Stereo / DTS-HD Master Audio 5.0

Region Code: All regions ("0")

Disc: 1 BD-50

Menu Language: English

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

Documentary: German, French, Spanish, Chinese, Korean / with Voice-Over in English

Total time: c. 165' (Opera: c. 136 ' + Documentary/Behind the Scenes: '29')

Classification/"FSK": from 0 Years

Authoring Studio: platin media productions / Sarstedt

“Villazon turns in an action-packed, razzle-dazzle production. The opera is set in a film studio during the silent movie era, where the cast is filming a Western...Villazon's Nemorino...comes across as individual, hyperactive, zany, but also a bit petulant and unlovable...Persson exudes easy-going charm...[d'Arcangelo] sings with fine, Italianate comic energy.” Classical Music ****

“Villazon turns in an action-packed, razzle-dazzle production. The opera is set in a film studio during the silent movie era, where the cast is filming a Western...Villazon's Nemorino...comes across as individual, hyperactive, zany, but also a bit petulant and unlovable...Persson exudes easy-going charm...[d'Arcangelo] sings with fine, Italianate comic energy.” Gramophone Magazine, October 2014

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

DG - 0734991

(Blu-ray)

$23.50

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.

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: $23.50

Special: $21.00

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Donizetti: La Favorite

Donizetti: La Favorite

Recorded live at Theatre du Capitole de Toulouse, February 2014


Kate Aldrich (Leonor de Guzman), Yijie Shi (Fernand), Ludovic Tézier (Alphonse XI, King of Castile), Giovanni Furlanetto (Balthazar), Marie-Benedicte Souquet (Ines), Alain Gabriel (Don Gaspar) & Dongjin Ahn (A lord)

Choeur du Capitole de Toulouse & Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse, Antonello Allemandi (conductor) & Vincent Boussard (director)

One of the composer's most beguiling scores, La Favorite is Donizetti's La favorita in its original French form - a tale of love and war that represents a glorious mix of Italian bel canto and 19th century grand opera.

Today's scholarly interest in Donizetti's output has helped bring La Favorite back into circulation, and Vincent Boussard's arresting Toulouse production does full justice to its renewed masterpiece status, accentuating the work's intimacy through economical sets and Christian Lacroix's striking costumes, thus drawing attention to the opera's three main characters.

Three international principals take on these demanding roles: Chinese tenor Yijie Shi is a 'revelation' (La Depeche) as Fernand, with French baritone Ludovic Tezier offering suitably rich-toned authority as King Alphonse XI and lauded American mezzo Kate Aldrich - 'the Carmen of this generation' (San Francisco Sentinel) - plumbing the emotional depths of Leonor's music.

Conductor and bel canto specialist Antonello Allemandi derives every possible nuance form the score, adding to the passionate proceedings on stage.

Running time: 184 minutes

Subtitles:EN/DE/FR/JP/KO

Sound format: LPCM stereo/DTS Master Audio 5.1

“[Elder conducts] with his love of the music shining through in every bar...the OAE's sound is wonderfully sparkly and transparent, everything beautifully balanced...there's little doubting Opera Rara's achievement in letting us hear [this opera] sound so thrillingly fresh.” Gramophone Magazine, June 2015

“The sets are sparse, the pomp and visual grandeur the Parisians are mercifully absent, and the stress is almost wholly on the central triangle...They make a thrilling trio...So strong are the lead performances that I got wholly involved in the action.” BBC Music Magazine, August 2015 ****

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Opus Arte - OABD7165D

(Blu-ray)

$35.75

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.

Donizetti: La Fille du Régiment

Donizetti: La Fille du Régiment

Live from Covent Garden, Royal Opera House, London – January 2007


Natalie Dessay (Marie), Juan Diego Flórez (Tonio), Felicity Palmer (La Marquise de Birkenfeld), Alessandro Corbelli (Sulpice), Donald Maxwell (Hortensius), Dawn French (La Duchesse de Crackentorp)

Orchestra & Chorus of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Bruno Campanella (conductor) & Laurent Pelly (stage director)

“Laurent Pelly's production of Donizetti's opéra comique was one of the highlights of the Royal Opera's 2006-7 season, and viewing this well-produced DVD of the show it's perfectly obvious why. Natalie Dessay's skinny tomboy of a Marie combines a 110 per cent commitment to the physicality of her acting with a coloratura facility that is beyond criticism.”

BBC Music Magazine

“Laurent Pelly's production of Donizetti's opéra comique was one of the highlights of the Royal Opera's 2006-7 season, and viewing this well-produced DVD of the show it's perfectly obvious why. Natalie Dessay's skinny tomboy of a Marie combines a 110 per cent commitment to the physicality of her acting with a coloratura facility that is beyond criticism.” BBC Music Magazine, June 2008 *****

“Dessay… is such a natural clown, and it is wonderful to behold the way she used little bits of the coloratura to illustrate comic points. Bruno Campanella conducts the Royal Opera forces with a delicate understanding of all the requirements of Donizetti's often exquisite instrumental detail.” Gramophone Magazine, May 2008

“With Juan Diego Flórez's wide-eyed Tonio riding the high Cs with insouciance and Natalie Dessay's tomboyish, hyperactive 'girl of the regiment', Laurent Pelly's 'Fille' exudes a charm, wit and joie de vivre that have made it one of the most successful Donizetti productions in recent years. A treat.” Presto Classical, June 2014

“Dessay establishes her star quality from her very first entry and vivaciously dominates Donizetti's delightful opera throughout...In short she is an unforgettably enchanting Marie, unlikely to be surpassed...[Florez] also sings and acts superbly.” Penguin Guide, 2011 edition

“Reactions to Dawn French’s non-singing appearance as an ample and obdurate Duchess of Crackentorp will be, more than usual, a matter of taste...But there can surely be no argument about Dessay. As the regiment’s tomboy handmaiden Marie, pigtail curving, fist punching the air à la Nigel Kennedy, she shows incredible comic verve even when Donizetti’s music sends her voice skyrocketing. Singer, actress, clown: she’s all three. Theatrically, Flórez isn’t even near the same league...[but] the Peruvian star’s grin, sparkle and ringing tenor keep us happy enough. When the nine high Cs of Ah, mes amis! are hit dead in the centre with the ease of a shrug, you know you’re in safe hands. And Tonio suits exactly the singer’s still-boyish charm... It all makes you want to be in the stalls, seeing and breathing every moment.” The Times, 25th April 2008 ****

GGramophone Awards 2008

Finalist - DVD

Penguin Guide

Rosette Winner

BBC Music Magazine

DVD Choice - June 2008

BBC Music Magazine Awards 2009

DVD of the Year

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Erato - 2564605519

(Blu-ray)

$19.50

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

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