Blu-ray Discs

Claudio Giovanni Antonio Monteverdi (1567-1643)

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Monteverdi: L'incoronazione di Poppea

Monteverdi: L'incoronazione di Poppea

Recorded live at the Gran Teatre del Liceu, Barcelona, February 2009


Miah Persson (Poppea), Sarah Connolly (Nerone), Jordi Domènech (Ottone), Franz-Josef Selig (Seneca), Maite Beaumont (Ottavia), Dominique Visse (Nutrice/Arnalta), Ruth Rosique (Drusilla), Guy de Mey (Lucano), William Berger (Valletto), Marisa Martins (La Fortuna/Pallas Athene/Venus), Judith van Wanroij (Damigella/La Virtu)

Baroque Orchestra of the Gran Teatre del Liceu, Harry Bicket (conductor) & David Alden (stage director)

Love conquers all – ruthlessly and irresistibly – as Emperor Nero and his mistress Poppea remove the obstacles to their union. At Barcelona’s Gran Teatre del Liceu David Alden’s visually sumptuous production, with its suggestions of a giant game of chess, puts the opera’s potent blend of sex and politics in a context that sets ancient against modern– just as the action juxtaposes scurrilous comedy and stark drama. Monteverdi’s magnificent score, meanwhile, accommodates intrigue, wit, nobility, tragedy and sensuality, and, led by the intense Sarah Connolly and the delectable Miah Persson, the cast brings both drama and music startlingly to life.

Monteverdi's final masterpiece.

Harry Bicket is an internationally renowned early music specialist.

Sarah Connolly recently appeared in the BBC's Opera Italia series, performing a scene from Poppea.

Bicket says of Poppea, 'this is one of the best librettos ever written for an opera.'

Extra features include an illustrated synopsis and cast gallery.

Running time: 183 minutes

Subtitles: EN/FR/DE/ES/Catalan

Sound format: 2.0LPCM + 5.1(5.0) DTS

“this Barcelona interpretation by [Alden] is almost Brechtian in the spare objectivity of its stage set, and Expressionist in its use of the shadowy, zombie-like figure of Time that shuffles across the back of the stage...Persson is a superb Poppea who can really act with her voice but whose body seems constrained by the direction...The orchestral accompaniments are nicely varied.” BBC Music Magazine, July 2012 ****

“a punchy 2009 performance of distinctively dark musical colouring...Nothing is overly camped up - even Dominique Visse in loud, bra-flashing drag...The whole is acutely paced and supported by Harry Bicket's orchestra, thei performance a reminder of how much progress has been made in the realisation of early Venetian opera in the last half-century...The hand-picked European cast is in fine fettle, Connolly's Nero outstanding” Gramophone Magazine, September 2012

Blu-ray Disc

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Opus Arte - OABD7105D

(Blu-ray)

$35.75

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Monteverdi: L'incoronazione di Poppea

Monteverdi: L'incoronazione di Poppea


Birgitte Christensen (Poppea), Jacek Laszczkowski (Nero), Tim Mead (Ottone), Marita Sølberg (Virtú/Drusilla), Patricia Bardon (Ottavia), Amelie Aldenheim (Amore), Ina Kringlebotn (Fortuna), Tone Kruse (Nutrice), Giovanni Battista Parodi (Seneca), Emiliano Gonzalez-Toro (Arnalta), David Fielder (Valetto), Magnus Staveland (Lucano)

Orchestra of the Norwegian National Opera, Alessandro de Marchi

Staged by Ole Anders Tandberg, adapted and filmed by Anja Stabell and Stein-Roger Bull in 2010 at the Norwegian National Opera.

The Coronation of Poppea was the début production from critically acclaimed stage director Ole Anders Tandberg in the Norwegian Opera & Ballet, and he lets blood flow. TV directors Anja Stabell and Stein-Roger Bull reinforces the impact by letting blood’s bright color compete against black and white images. Poppea like you’ve never seen it before!

Special packaging with a high quality slipcase.

At the centre of events is the power-crazed Poppea. She aspires to the top level of the hierarchy and seduces Emperor Nero. He is totally captivated by Poppea and does everything possible to marry her, even if it leads to murder. A classic drama unfolds, where the struggle for power and riches paints an unattractive portrait of humankind. In this respect not much has changed since the opera was written 365 years ago.

Picture format: 1080i Full HD - 16:9

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

Region code: all (worldwide)

Booklet notes: English, German, French

Subtitles: Italian, English, German

Running time: 180 mins

“It relentlessly portrays the leaders of the Roman Empire as violent, sex-mad adolescents...There is, though, some truly terrific singing here. Birgitte Christiansen (Poppea) is an amazingly assured musical presence, who can colour her voice to fit every occasion. Jacek Laszczkowski (Nero) is expressively menacing and lascivious by turn” BBC Music Magazine, June 2012 ****

“How best to depict these grotesques for a 21st-century audience? Ole Anders Tandberg's solution is to put them in modern dress and to have them indulge in what the booklet-note calls 'frequent lashings of blood and sex'...as for the blood, for lashings read buckets. Jacek Lazczkowski plays Nero brilliantly as a complete psychopath...the best [singing] is from Tim Mead and Patricia Bardon.” Gramophone Magazine, June 2012

Blu-ray Disc

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EuroArts - 2058924

(Blu-ray)

$35.75

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Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Monteverdi: L'Orfeo

Recorded live at La Teatro alla Scala 21st & 23rd December 2009


Georg Nigl (Orfeo), Roberta Invernizzi (Euridice), Sara Mingardo (Messaggera), Sara Mingardo (Speranza), Luigi De Donato (Caronte), Raffaella Milanesi (Proserpina), Giovanni Battista Parodi (Plutone), Roberta Invernezzi (Eco), Furio Zanasi (Apollo) & Nicola Strada (Solo Dancer)

Orchestra of Teatro alla Scala & Concerto Italiano (Basso continuo), Rinaldo Alessandrini (conductor) & Robert Wilson (director)

Monteverdi’s seminal first opera tells the dramatic story from Ovid’s Metamorphoses of the descent of Orfeo (Georg Nigl) into the underworld to recover his beloved wife Euridice (Roberta Invernizzi), who has died from a snake bite. In a new production for La Scala, based on a painting by Titian and directed by Robert Wilson, the opera receives a powerful and inspiring performance from a fine cast, the Orchestra of Teatro alla Scala and Concerto Italiano under the much-admired Italian early music specialist, Rinaldo Alessandrini. Filmed in High Definition and recorded in true surround sound.

‘Robert Wilson meets Monteverdi with successful results’ The Opera Critic

Extra features:

Cast Gallery

Illustrated Synopsis

Running time 1 hours 56 mins

Region Code All regions

Picture format 1080i High Definition / 16:9

Sound format 5.1(5.0) DTS

Menu languages EN

Subtitles EN/FR/DE/ES/IT

“I've never heard [the separation scene] more effectively sung by either Orfeo or Euridice...[Nigl] animates the recitatives by putting the words and their rhetorical structures first...In short, this is a wonderfully satisfying performance, featuring one of the finest Orfeos on disc, and a production which suits the needs of both the large-scale theatre and the small screen equally well.” International Record Review, March 2011

“Director Robert Wilson takes his inspiration from a Titian painting, Venus with Eros and an Organist, and delivers a series of starkly-lit tableaux - strong geometric shapes framing the highly stylised gestures of the cast. The drama comes from Alessandrini's edition and the bite and brilliance of the La Scala orchestra, and Concerto Italiano's inventive continuo section.” BBC Music Magazine, April 2011 ****

“Beautifully flimed in Milan, this DVD shows how well Wilson's minimalist productions can take to the small screen...Alessandrini directs an authentically sized La Scala orchestra in playing that is at once historically informed and always alive...Georg Nigl, previously a Wozzeck at La Scala, sings with much beauty of voice.” Gramophone Magazine, July 2011

“This bears all Wilson's trademark stylisations with slow movement and hand gestures full of meaning casting their hypnotic spell. The lighting is also crucial to Wilson's approach. The singing is enthusiastic with Georg Nigl a solid Orpheus, Roberta Invernizzi a poignant Eurydice and Sara Mingardo an outstanding Messenger.” Opera Now, Summer 2011

“the singers are drawn from the top drawer of Baroque practice...Wilson's concept of abstraction - both visual and dramatic - never seems to work with real live performers. But there's still a great deal of musical pleasure to be had from the singers and Rinaldo Alessandrini's conducting.” Classic FM Magazine, May 2011 ***

Blu-ray Disc

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Opus Arte La Scala Collection - OABD7080D

(Blu-ray)

$35.75

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Monteverdi: Orpheus, Odysseus & Poppea

Monteverdi: Orpheus, Odysseus & Poppea

Live from the Komische Oper Berlin, 2013


Monteverdi:

L'incoronazione di Poppea

arr. Elena Kats-Chernin

Brigitte Geller (Poppea), Roger Smeets (Nero), Helene Schneiderman (Ottavia), Theresa Kronthaler (Otho), Julia Giebel (Drusilla), Jens Larsen (Seneca), Tansel Akzeybek (Valletto), Ariana Strahl (Damigella / Das Schicksal), Thomas Michael Allen (Arnalta), Tom Erik Lie (Amme), Peter Renz (Amor), Annelie Sophie Müller (Die Tugend), Adrian Strooper (Liberto)

Il ritorno d'Ulisse in patria

arr. Elena Kats-Chernin

Günter Papendell (Odysseus), Ezgi Kutlu (Penelope), Tansel Akzeybek (Telemachos), Peter Renz (Amor / Iros), Mirka Wagner (Melanto), Adrian Strooper (Eurymachos), Christiane Oertel (Eurykleia), Thomas Michael Allen (Eumaios), Jens Larsen (Die Zeit / Neptun / Antinoos), Christoph Späth (Pisandro / Jupiter), Tom Erik Lie (Amphinomos), Karolina Gumos (Das Schicksal / Juno), Katharina von Bülow (Minerva)

L'Orfeo

arr. Elena Kats-Chernin

Dominik Köninger (Orpheus), Julia Novikova (Eurydike), Peter Renz (Amor), Theresa Kronthaler (Sylvia / Proserpina), Alexey Antonov (Pluto), Stefan Sevenich (Charon), Frank Soehnle (Figuren Orpheus und Eurydike)


Orchestra and Chorus of the Komische Oper Berlin, André de Ridder (conductor) & Barrie Kosky (stage director)

Monteverdi’s operas are rightly considered as the first masterpieces in opera history. Much like DNA, they contain all characteristics of today’s opera, 400 years later. Elena Kats-Chernin, a successful international composer from Tashkent, used Monteverdi’s musical material, even though it barely contains any concrete orchestration details, and has provided a new and idiosyncratic instrumentation. Similar to what Monteverdi did in his time, Kats-Chernin incorporates various styles, from Jazz, Klezmer, to Tango and Ragtime into her style. This new creation of Monteverdi’s opera uses the traditional orchestral instrumentation, and adds exotic instruments from Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Western Africa. Strong, comic, enthralling, stark and sensitive images, with which Barrie Kosky fascinates the audience, stirring them to raucous applause.

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

Picture Format: 16:9

Subtitles: DE (Original Language), GB, FR, TR

3 Blu-ray Discs: 1 x 25 GB (Single Layer)

& 2 x 50 GB (Dual Layers)

Resolution: 1080i High Definition (Upscale)

Running Time: ca. 462 mins

FSK: 12

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Arthaus Musik - 109127

(Blu-ray - 3 discs)

$77.00

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.

Caravaggio

Caravaggio

Live from the Staatsoper Unter den Linden, Berlin, December 2008


Staatsballett Berlin & Staatskapelle Berlin, Paul Connelly

Choreography by Mauro Bigonzetti

Caravaggio, born Michelangelo Merisi, has entered history due to his paintings of dramatic intensity. Caravaggio used to venture the threshold beyond the pale throughout his life. There was admiration for his work and harsh opposition to his extraordinary realism in painting human beings. Due to his passionate personality, he encountered numerous conflicts with people around him, sponsors, and the law. One of his foremost artistic twists was the extreme contrast between brightness and darkness, light and shade.

Mauro Bigonzetti is one of the leading choreographers of the Italian ballet which freed itself from the predominance of mainly classical opera companies in the 80s. He created his choreographies mainly for the Aterballetto in Reggio Emilia that helped him to fame and worldwide attention. “When I think of Caravaggio, I think of the artist and the human being at the same time. These are the two sides of the human existence that interest me in particular. The relations of these two worlds are the inspiration for this work: the inner world on the one hand – and how it evolves artistically on the other.”

Bonus: 'Making of Caravaggio' - Interviews with the choreographer, composer and soloists as well as backstage and rehearsal footage.

Sound Format: PCM Stereo + DTS-HD Audio Master 7.1

Picture Format: 16:9

Blu-ray Disc: 25 GB (Single Layer)

Resolution: 1080i High Definition

Running Time:

BD: 90 mins Performance + 29 mins Bonus

Audio CD: 70 mins

FSK: 0

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Arthaus Musik - 101795

(Blu-ray)

$35.75

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Philippe Jaroussky: La voix des rêves

Philippe Jaroussky: La voix des rêves

Greatest Moments on Concerts


anon.:

Ciaccona di Paradiso, e dell'Inferno

Caldara:

Lo seguitai felice (L'Olimpiade)

Cavalli:

Uscitemi dal cor, lacrime amare

Hahn, R:

A Chloris

Handel:

Son nata a lagrimar (from Giulio Cesare)

Venti turbini (Rinaldo)

Lascia ch'io pianga (from Rinaldo)

Io t'abbraccio (from Rodelinda)

Aminta e Fillide (Arresta il passo) HWV 83: Se vago rio

Scherza, infida (from Ariodante)

Verdi prati (from Alcina)

Mi lusinga il dolce affetto (from Alcina)

Lekeu:

Sur une tombe

Massenet:

Elégie

Monteverdi:

Sento un certo non so che

Ohime ch'io cado

Adagiati, Poppea - Oblivion soave (L'incoronazione di Poppea)

Pur ti miro (I gaze upon you) from L'Incoronazione di Poppea

Piazzólla:

Los Pajaros Perdidos

Porpora:

Alto Giove (from Polifemo)

Purcell:

Sound the trumpet, beat the drum, Z335

Rossi, Luigi:

Lasciate averno (from Orfeo)

Sances:

Lagrimosa beltà

Shostakovich:

Duet for Two Violins and Piano

Strozzi:

Il Lamento "Su'l Rodano severo"

L'Eraclito amoroso 'Udite amanti'

Vivaldi:

Vedro con mio diletto (from Giustino)

Se in ogni guardo from Orlando finto pazzo

Sol da te, mio dolce amore (from Orlando furioso)

Sento con qual diletto (from Ercole sul Termodonte)

Nel profondo from Orlando Furioso

Nisi Dominus: Cum dederit


Philippe Jaroussky (countertenor)

Philippe Jaroussky, described by Germany’s Die Zeit as “the Apollo of countertenors’, stands out among his many talented contemporaries as much for the soprano-like beauty of his tone as for the elegance and insight of his interpretations and his adventurous and erudite approach to repertoire – whether unearthing neglected scores by little-known composers or venturing beyond the Baroque into the 19th and 20th centuries.

Established as one of Virgin Classics’ bestselling artists, Jaroussky, now aged 34, has been honoured three times in the Victoires de la Musique awards in his native France and has also received Germany’s most prominent music prize, the Echo Klassik. His diverse achievements are saluted in two new collections on Virgin Classics – the 2CD set “The Voice” and the DVD and Blu Ray “La Voix des rêves: Greatest moments in Concert”.

“LA VOIX DES RÊVES - Greatest Moments in Concert” (available on DVD & Blu Ray) features video footage from a number of occasions and venues – including items from a concert given among the crystal chandeliers of the splendid Galerie des Glaces in the palace of Versailles, and works by Handel and Vivaldi performed in another jewel of French Baroque architecture, the sumptuously decorated Chapelle de la Trinité in Lyon. Also included are exclusive interviews an array of fellow musicians: Jean-Christophe Spinosi, Emmanuelle Haïm, Christina Pluhar; Jérôme Ducros, Quatuor Ebène, Gautier Capuçon, Marie-Nicole Lemieux and Renaud Capuçon.

Jaroussky and his appeal were aptly summarised in a recent profile in the French magazine Balthazar: “Philippe Jaroussky alternates between opera and recitals, bringing his sensual, graceful voice and matinee idol looks, and this has made him a key star of classical music. But his recordings also reveal a skilled musicologist who has revived numerous forgotten artists like the castrato Carestini [and the composers] Johann Christian Bach and Caldara. Jaroussky simply glows. Anyone who has had the opportunity to meet him will find it hard to forget his enthusiastic conversation and his magnetic gaze.”

The singer made his passions clear in an interview with Crescendo magazine, revealing that “I don’t like being told I have the ‘voice of an angel’, because that would just mean that it sounds pretty and takes people out of themselves … I want to be able to evoke more human emotions too: sorrow, despair, jealousy.” Speaking to the leading French newspaper Le Monde, he went into more detail on his philosophy as a maturing singer: “Ten years into your career, you reach a certain level of purity in your approach. You are always set on improving – strengthening your high notes, your low notes, your projection or your expressivity – but you also accept what it means to be an artist.”

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Erato - 0175919

(Blu-ray)

$22.25

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