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Rossini: La donna del lago


Joyce DiDonato (Elena), Juan Diego Florez (Giacomo V), John Osborn (Roderigo)

The Metropolitan Orchestra and Chorus, Michele Mariotti

Released or re-released in last 6 months

DVD Video

Region: 0

Erato - 2564605098

(DVD Video - 2 discs)

Normally: $23.50

Special: $20.75

Scheduled for release on 13 November 2015. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

Celebrating Frank Sinatra

Live at the Royal Albert Hall


Seth MacFarlane, Jamie Parker, Claire Martin

The John Wilson Orchestra, John Wilson

The John Wilson Orchestra is joined on stage by Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane to perform some of Sinatra's most memorable songs

The Voice’ … ‘Ol’ Blue Eyes’ … ‘The Sultan of Swoon’: the mythology surrounding Frank Sinatra is overwhelming. A gifted entertainer, screen actor and ubiquitous personality, his real legacy as a pioneer of popular song can sometimes get lost in the clamour. This year the John Wilson Orchestra returns to the BBC Proms at the Royal Albert Hall with a special Late Night Prom celebrating the centenary of this musical icon born 100 years ago in a concert that brings together some of the great voices of our own time. Led by the multitalented Seth MacFarlane, The John Wilson Orchestra’s celebration of Frank Sinatra will be broadcast live on British television (Friday, August 7th BBC Four – 10.15pm) and released on a DVD for Warner Classics in October.

“It is an honour for the John Wilson Orchestra to be returning to the BBC Proms to perform a special late night Prom marking the centenary of Frank Sinatra’s birth and celebrating his legacy” says John Wilson, “The concert focuses on the most important part of his career - the middle years, mainly at Capitol Records, and in particular his collaboration with Nelson Riddle, although other arrangers are represented. Almost all of the songs are taken from his famous concept albums; Sinatra was one of the first singers to package songs into the new album format and was certainly the most important and influential. He single-handedly brought the singer and the song in to the foreground where previously bandleaders had always been in the spotlight. As Benny Goodman had made the general public orchestra-conscious, so Sinatra made them singer-conscious. By the time he was on contract at Capitol Records he was rigorous with his selection of material and choice of orchestras and arrangers. Several of his records from this period represent the high-watermark of popular music in the 20th century. Seth MacFarlane will be making his return to the orchestra and we welcome leading British jazz star Claire Martin and making his debut with the John Wilson Orchestra is actor and singer Jamie Parker. We’re delighted that this very special event will be available on DVD for everyone to enjoy.”

“It’s always an utter joy to perform with the incomparable John Wilson Orchestra” says Hollywood film and television star Seth MacFarlane, “Their interpretations of these classic charts are unmatched in the modern era. Don’t walk, run to hear them play anytime you can!!” . In August 2009 MacFarlane made his debut at the BBC Proms with the John Wilson Orchestra at the Royal Albert Hall in a show celebrating the 75th anniversary of the MGM film musicals. The show was watched by millions on British television and MacFarlane subsequently recorded an album of the MGM film musicals with the John Wilson Orchestra for EMI (Now Warner Classics) and toured the UK and performed with the John Wilson Orchestra in Los Angeles.

Award-winning recording artist and BBC Radio 3 presenter Claire Martin will join the John Wilson Orchestra and Seth MacFarlane on stage “What a huge honour for me to be part of such a unique and wonderful night of music! It’s every singer’s dream to perform with a full orchestra and the John Wilson Orchestra is one of THE best in the world. Add to this the BBC Proms, the majestic setting of London’s Royal Albert Hall and the fantastic repertoire made famous by Frank Sinatra and we have all the ingredients for a sensational concert. Seth Macfarlane is a force of nature and, like Sinatra, a natural musician. My duet with him on Rogers and Hart’s ‘This Can’t Be Love’ will most definitely be a career highlight and my solo song - the classic Kern/Hammerstein ballad ‘The Folks who Live on the Hill’ - which was originally conducted by Sinatra is a song I’ve loved for many years and I can’t wait to sing it at this very special BBC Prom.”

Released or re-released in last 6 months

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

Warner Classics - 2564602844

(DVD Video)

Normally: $18.50

Special: $16.50

Scheduled for release on 23 October 2015. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

Bach, J S: Goldberg Variations, BWV988

Bach, J S: Goldberg Variations, BWV988

Limited Edition CD+DVD


Music of the Baroque era – Bach keyboard concertos and Scarlatti sonatas – already features in the eclectic Erato catalogue of the French pianist Alexandre Tharaud. Now he is giving us his interpretation of one of the monuments of the repertoire for piano (and harpsichord), Bach’s Goldberg Variations. “Bach is the father of all composers,” Tharaud has said. “He is the one who opened the way. When I am tired, or not playing at my best, I return to Bach. He refocuses me, he gives me new strength. His music has a centre, but it has no end ... To play Bach, you need to feel in harmony with yourself, to feel humble – Bach really is a matter of humility ... You cannot hide anything.”

Published in 1741, the work – which lasts over an hour – comprises 30 variations on an initial aria. Indeed, Bach originally called it simply “Aria mit verschiedenen Änderungen” (Aria with diverse variations), but its commonly-used title derives from the name of the harpsichordist (Johann Gottlieb Goldberg) of Bach’s Dresden patron Count Keyserlingk. It was written for a dual-manual harpsichord, and thus makes considerable demands on a pianist’s dexterity in the contrapuntal writing. It also contains very little in the way of directions for interpretation, so all in all it represents a mighty and exciting challenge to the performer.

Alexandre Tharaud prepared for this challenge – and for his first concert performance of the Goldberg Variations, which took place in April 2011 in Barcelona – with nine months’ sabbatical from public performance. “By taking a break from the stage I had an opportunity to work without having to look forward, to be free of stress, not having to worry about my timetable. In our normal life, we musicians always have to be thinking about a forthcoming concert, whether it’s the next day or three years off. I had the luxury of examining just a few notes from every angle. It’s exciting to spend five hours on a single bar ... Perhaps it’s a question of maturity – of taking one’s time, questioning oneself, of simply being alone with the piano and working on one’s playing ... Like an archaeologist, I’m digging away at the unknown, I’m searching. That was why I needed to stop for a while, and above all to spend time away from the concert platform.” Once he returned to a more conventional routine, Tharaud scheduled groups of four or five performances of the Goldberg Variations at intervals of six months or so, all the while working towards this recording, which was made in February and April 2015 in Aix en Provence.

Almost inevitably, the spirit of the idiosyncratic Canadian pianist Glenn Gould (1932-1982) hovers around any new recording on the piano of the Goldberg Variations: he has been credited with transforming perceptions of Bach played on a modern instrument. Tharaud readily points out that the first CD he bought, at the age of 15, was one of Gould’s recordings of the work. “While I might describe myself as a free electron, Gould was more of a UFO! No-one played like him and no-one can play like him ... His playing, his reinvention of the music create a total experience that I find fascinating, and I learned a great deal from him ... The Goldberg Variations is a work that is renewed each time it is recorded. Generally, I am someone who likes to have my expectations defied, to have my assumptions challenged – whether we’re talking about my tastes or the way I live – and great works of art change your life.”

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Erato - 2564605177

(CD + DVD Video - 2 discs)

Normally: $15.50

Special: $12.50

Scheduled for release on 16 October 2015. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

Henryk Górecki: The Symphony of Sorrowful Songs

Henryk Górecki: The Symphony of Sorrowful Songs

A Film by Tony Palmer


Gorecki:

Symphony No. 3, Op. 36 'Symphony of Sorrowful Songs'


Dawn Upshaw (soprano)

The London Sinfonietta, David Zinman

In the darkest days of the Solidarity Movement, when military rule almost destroyed democracy in Poland, the music of Henryk Górecki was the most eloquent voice of protest, a rallying cry for the oppressed, a symbol of hope. It is probably this reason which accounts for his music’s incredible popularity in what was Eastern Europe. Furtherafield, his “Third Symphony” has been a musical sensation. It was in September 1992 that the recording by the London Sinfonietta, conducted by David Zinman, with Dawn Upshaw as the solo soprano, began to enter the public’s consciousness. The symphony surged up the music charts to reach the No. 1 spot in the classical album list and, quite incredibly, reached No. 6 in the popular album chart as well. Górecki wrote the symphony in 1976 at a time when he was a ‘nonperson’ in the political sense and his music was banned in his native Katowice, some twenty minutes from Auschwitz. In 1970 he found a book about the German occupation. In the footnotes there was an example of the different messages scratched on the walls of the prison and he found one particular message from a young girl. Her words were very simple, “Mama, don’t cry.” It was these words which inspired the “Symphony of Sorrowful Songs”. This emotional, disturbing and powerful film by the award-winning director Tony Palmer includes a performance of the “Third Symphony” by The London Sinfonietta, Dawn Upshaw and David Zinman.

Sound Format: PCM Stereo

Picture Format: 4:3

Subtitles: GB, DE, FR, JP, KOR

Audio Language: PL, DE

DVD 5 / NTSC

Running Time: 53 mins + 60 mins (Bonus)

FSK: 12

Released or re-released in last 6 months

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

Arthaus Musik - 109131

(DVD Video)

$20.25

Scheduled for release on 25 September 2015. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

Mozart: Davide Penitente, K469

Mozart: Davide Penitente, K469

Felsenreitschule, Salzburg, January 2015


Christiane Karg, Marianne Crebassa, Stanislas de Barbeyra

Les Musiciens du Louvre & Salzburger Bachchor Académie équestre de Versailles, Marc Minkowski

For this spectacular production of Mozart’s Davide penitente on the vast stage of the Salzburg Felsenreitschule at the Mozart Week 2015, Marc Minkowski and the equestrian choreographer Bartabas used dancing horses and thus restored the former riding school to its original function.

Horses, riders from the Académie équestre de Versailles and Bartabas himself, whose successful productions are unique in the world of art, perform their elegant dressage arabesques within this exceptional setting. Soloists, chorus and orchestra are ranged over three levels on galleries cut from the bare rock. The result is a unique synthesis of the arts.

Subtitles: G, F, Sp, Jp, Kor

Booklet: E, G, F

No. of Discs: 1

Run time: 71 minutes

Disc Format: DVD 9

Picture: NTSC, 16:9

Audio: PCM Stereo

Bonus Material: Adagio & Fugue K 546 (Bartabas solo)

Region Code: 0 (worldwide)

Released or re-released in last 6 months

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

C Major - 731608

(DVD Video)

$30.50

Scheduled for release on 25 September 2015. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

Puccini: Turandot

Puccini: Turandot


Mlada Khudoley (Turandot), Manuel von Senden (Altoum), Michael Ryssov (Timur), Riccardo Massi (Calaf), Guanqun Yu (Liu)

Wiener Symphoniker, Paolo Carignani

STAGED BY: Marco Arturo Marelli

Mention Giacomo Puccini’s name and opera-lovers all over the world will think of grand opera and passionate love stories. One of the world’s most famous arias comes from the composer’s final opera, Turandot: “Nessun dorma” – none shall sleep because by morning the Chinese princess is determined to have discovered the name of the unknown prince. The work is remarkable for its Chinese local colour, its opulent crowd scenes, its powerful choruses and its characters overwhelmed by their emotions. Enthusiastically acclaimed by its audiences, the present production combines spectacular and touching scenes on the Bregenz Festival’s vast lakeside stage.

RECORDING DATE: Bregenz Festival, 2015

SOUND FORMAT: DVD: PCM Stereo, dts 5.1

PICTURE: 16:9, HD

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

BOOKLET: English, German, French

TOTAL RUNNING TIME. 126 MINS

Released or re-released in last 6 months

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

C Major - 731408

(DVD Video)

Normally: $39.75

Special: $35.75

Scheduled for release on 25 September 2015. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

Strauss, R: Elektra

Strauss, R: Elektra


Ingela Brimberg (Elektra), Susanna Levonen (Chrysothemis), Ingrid Tobiasson (Klytaemnestra), Thomas Lander (Orestes), Magnus Kyhle (Aegisthus), Lennart Forsén (Tutor/An old servant), Margaretha Dahlhamn, Agneta Lundgren, Katarina Leoson, Sara Olsson, Karin Andersson (Maids), Niklas Björlig Rygert (Young Servant), Annelie Lindfors (Overseer)

Norrlands Operan's Symphony Orchestra, Rumon Gamba

STAGED BY: La Fura dels Baus

NorrlandsOperan and the dramatic art collective La Fura Dels Baus have create a unique monumental outdoor performance of Richard Strauss’ oneact opera Elektra. Cranes, mechanical giants with singers standing inside their chests, skips filled with Blood – Elektra is NorrlandsOperan’s biggest and most complex production ever, including many ‘special-effects’: “Suddenly, the front of the large containers opened up. Bloody water came gushing out in copious amounts. The water level on the graveyard rose and turned red.” (Kulturkorren)

RECORDING DATE: Umea, Sweden, 2014

SOUND FORMAT DVD: PCM Stereo, dts 5.1

PICTURE 16:9, HD

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

BOOKLET: English, German, French

TOTAL RUNNING TIME. 110 MINS

Released or re-released in last 6 months

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

C Major - 731808

(DVD Video)

Normally: $39.75

Special: $35.75

Scheduled for release on 25 September 2015. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

Verdi: Aida

Verdi: Aida


Kristin Lewis (Aida), Fabio Sartori (Radames), Anita Rachvelishvili (Amneris), George Gagnidze (Amonasro), Matti Salminen (Ramfis), Carlo Colombara (Il Re), Azer Rza-Zada (Messagero), Chiara Isotton (La gran Sacerdotessa)

La Scala, Zubin Mehta

STAGED BY: Peter Stein

Giuseppe Verdi’s masterpiece Aida at La Scala in Milan is an experience in itself. Consequently, this new production is an event barely to be surpassed, especially when played before La Scala’s notoriously critical audience. Legendary stage director Peter Stein succeeds in delivering a lucid production acclaimed in equal measure by the press and public.

Great cast: Zubin Zehta, Carlo Colombara, Anita Rachvelishvili, Kristin Lewis, Fabio Sartori, Matti Salminen, George Gagnidze, Chiara Isotton.

RECORDING DATE: La Scala, 2015

SOUND FORMAT DVD: Dolby Stereo, dts 5.1

PICTURE 16:9, HD

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

BOOKLET: English, German, French

TOTAL RUNNING TIME. 151 MINS

Released or re-released in last 6 months

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

C Major - 732208

(DVD Video)

Normally: $39.75

Special: $35.75

Scheduled for release on 25 September 2015. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

The Ninth Symphony by Maurice Béjart

The Ninth Symphony by Maurice Béjart

on Schiller’s Ode to Joy


Béjart Ballet Lausanne, The Tokyo Ballet, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra & Ritsuyukai Choir, Zubin Mehta

Maurice Béjart’s compelling staging of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony has been enchanting audiences worldwide since its inception and its idea of universal brotherhood remains highly topical.

“Alle Menschen werden Brüder” (All men will be brothers) is the powerful message communicated by the unforgettable music and choreography.

From the stage of the NHK Hall in Tokyo.

250 dancers and musicians send this message out into the world. “It is a ‘manifestation’, in the deepest sense of the word.” Maurice Béjart.

The Béjart Ballet Lausanne constantly tours the world, surprises, moves and attracts the most diverse audiences since 1987.

For twenty-five years, the Béjart Ballet Lausanne has brought Maurice Béjart’s choreography to the attention of a worldwide audience.

Thirty-nine dancers from 15 countries, strongly dedicated to the Maestro’s style, and who, due to hundreds of performances, are experiencing the appreciation from an ever changing audience, receiving applause each year, from country to country, from one theatre to another. La Fenice, the Royal Albert Hall, Bolchoï or Colôn… with a repertoire of about twenty choreographies every season. Piazza San Marco in Venice, Boboli Gardens in Florence, Baths of Caracalla in Rome, Herod Aticus Amphitheatre…

Picture format DVD: 16:9 - NTSC

Sound format DVD: PCM Stereo, Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS 5.1 Region code: 0 (worldwide) Running time: 88 mins

Booklet notes: English, German, French

Language: French (Spoken Word), German (Ode)

Subtitles: English, German, Korean, Japanese

Available worldwide

Released or re-released in last 6 months

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

EuroArts - 2060878

(DVD Video)

Normally: $33.00

Special: $29.75

Scheduled for release on 25 September 2015. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

Rameau: Les Indes Galantes

Rameau: Les Indes Galantes


Amel Brahim-Djelloul (Hébé, Fatime, Phani), Benoît Arnould (Bellone, Alvar), Eugénie Warnier (Roxane), Olivera Topalovic (Amour, Zima), Judith Van Wanroij (Emilie, Atalide), Vittorio Prato (Osman), Anders Dahlin (Valère, Tacmas, Carlos, Damon), Nathan Berg (Huascar), Thomas Dolié (Adario)

Les Talens Lyriques, Christophe Rousset (conductor) & Olivier Simonnet (director)

Laura Scozzi: Staging & choregraphy

For the launch of its DVD collection, Alpha is joining forces with Christophe Rousset’s Les Talens Lyriques in Rameau’s opera-ballet Les Indes galantes, his most famous work, here performed in its 1750 ‘Toulouse’ version.

Particularly rich both on the musical level and in atmosphere, scrutinizing love ‘in far-off lands’ (Turkey, Peru, Persia and America), it responds to the infatuation with exoticism that tinged all the arts of the century. Rameau’s dance music is always quite suggestive, evocative of a movement or a pictorial atmosphere. As for the staging, Laura Scozzi brings her contemporary vision to these countries and travels.

Filmed at the Bordeaux National Opera, this production marked the Rameau celebrations in 2014 and was unanimously hailed by the international press:

"One of the glories of 18th-century music [...]. A cast [...] well nigh perfect." Tim Ashley, The Guardian

Released or re-released in last 6 months

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

A Musical Picture - up to 40% off

Alpha - ALPHA710

(DVD Video)

Normally: $34.00

Special: $30.26

Scheduled for release on 18 September 2015. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

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