When the legendary Venetian Teatro La Fenice, which had been completely destroyed by fire in 1996, rose like a phoenix from the ashes again, its rebirth was celebrated with Verdi’s La Traviata, an opera that had seen its première more than 150 years earlier in the same theatre. Led by star conductor Lorin Maazel, a cast of brilliant singeractors brought an exact replica of the March 1853 version to the stage, giving audiences the opportunity to experience the opera as the world first heard at its premiere in Venice. The original score had been found in the archives of La Fenice, so that La Traviata could relive its premiere without any revisions. With Italian soprano Patrizia Ciofi in the title role, German-Italian tenor Roberto Saccà as her lover and Russian baritone Dmitri Hvorostovsky as his father, the live recording features highly eminent singers of the Italian repertoire and stars, who are at home in opera houses throughout the world. The fascinating staging by internationally celebrated opera director Robert Carsen captures Verdi’s original intention. He takes up Verdi’s dictum that the opera is “a subject from our own time” and sets it in a well-healed contemporary environment. His interpretation picks up the two driving forces of the plot: the topic of prostitution and bourgeois hypocrisy and – immediately connected to it – the other central concern of the opera: money. The multi perspective filming and close-up cameras underline the singers’ outstanding acting ability and leave the impression of a film rather than stage action.
Sound Format: PCM Stereo, DD 5.1, DTS 5.1
Picture Format: 16:9
DVD Format: DVD 9, PAL
Subtitle Languages: IT, GB, DE, FR, ES
Running Time: 146 mins
“Ciofi is a serious artist who manoeuvres her voice around the difficulties of the title role and works hard to achieve Carsen's concept...Ultimately it's baritone Dmitri Hvorostovsky's magnificent Giorgio Germont who steals the show”
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