Ariadne auf Naxos is one of many beautifully crafted operas created by Richard Strauss and his librettist Hugo von Hofmannsthal. In the compelling production from the Zurich Opera, recorded on this DVD, Christoph von Dohnány leads a particularly strong cast of singer-actors in a thrilling interpretation of the work.
Ariadne is sung by the American soprano Emily Magee, who has received worldwide praise for her performances in works by both Wagner and Strauss. The German-born Italian tenor Roberto Saccà, who is regarded as one of the leading lyric tenors of his generation, takes the part of Bacchus. Both made their role débuts under Christoph von Dohnányi’s subtle yet sensual leadership, and both were acclaimed for their vocal radiance, subtle handling of the text and the care that they lavished on the technical aspects of their parts. The critics were also captivated by the rest of the brilliant cast: Elena Moşuc (Zerbinetta) lightly mastered the incredible heights of her role, Michael Volle was a vocally resplendent Music Master and Michelle Breedt a touching Composer. An entertaining and intelligently crafted production of one of the key operas exploring the intertextuality that occurs between “real life” and what today would be called “virtual reality”.
Sound Format: PCM Stereo, DD 5.1, DTS 5.1
Picture Format: 16:9
DVD Format: DVD 9, NTSC
Subtitle Languages: DE, GB, FR, ES, IT
Running Time: 127 mins
“Guth takes a highly serious approach to the piece...Dohnányi conducts with matching analytical swiftness. Emily Magee gives an Oscar-worthy performance as Ariadne, her singing rich and detailed (though for a grander assumption look elsewhere, this goddess has feet of clay).”
“Casting is first rate, with the Zerbinetta of Elena Mosuc stealing the limelight with an account of her big aria which prompts an ovation. Emily Magee's Ariadne is hardly less fine, ranging impressively and with full, creamy tone...[Dohnanyi] proves a passionate Straussian.”
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