Bayerisches Staatsorchester, Tomáš Hanus (conductor) & Martin Kušej (stage director)
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This highly acclaimed production from the Bayerische Staatsoper was a veritable sensation and the performance of up-and-coming Latvian soprano, Kristīne Opolais was rightly hailed by the press as “one of the most vivid and striking accomplishments seen on an opera stage in a long time” (Vienna’s leading daily “Der Standard”).
With her supple and velvety soprano voice, her captivating physical beauty and her hauntingly moving stage presence, Kristine Opolais perfectly embodies the role of water nymph who becomes a human being in order to find love.
Directed by renowned director Martin Kušej.
Recorded at the Bayerische Staatsoper, 2010.
Total: 193 minutes (Opera: 156 min. + Bonus 36 min.)
dts-HD MA 5.1, PCM Stereo
Opera: English, German, French, Spanish, Korean, Chinese
13th August 2011
“Not for the faint-hearted, Martin Kusej’s 2010 Munich production...transposes Dvorák’s water nymphs and goblins to the living-nightmare contemporary world of Josef Fritzl...there’s no denying the power of the staging. The soprano Kristine Opolais is a revelation in the title role and the music outstanding under Tomas Hanus’s baton.”
“Whatever reservations one might have about the production, the performance as a whole is remarkable. The cast has clearly bought into the producer's concept and they deliver a devastating ensemble performance. Kristine Opolais as Rusalka is vocally superb and acts magnificently..Tomáš Hanus draws some wonderful playing from the Bavarian State Orchestra and paces the musical-dramatic flow flawlessly.”
“[Kusej imposes] on Dvorak's work a harrowingly contemporary sexual violence. This is in its way a riveting conception, although it eliminates every trace of romance from the opera...Opolais's Rusalka exudes all-out commitment. The young Latvian soprano moves, acts and sings beautifully...Singing with velvety tone of imposing breadth, Gunther Groissbock proves terrifyingly convincing in putting across Kusej's dissolute, sexually brutal view of the Water Goblin.”
17th September 2011
“In Martin Kusej’s brilliantly executed, up-to-the-minute interpretation of Dvorák’s fairy tale, first seen in Munich a year ago, Rusalka is the victim of a psychopathic abductor (the water goblin), irretrievably damaged in body and mind...Opolais gives a harrowing performance, at the head of a strong cast”
Awards Issue 2011
“The grim modern tale is acted out with undeniable intensity. Kristine Opolais's Rusalka may not have the vocal beauty of some but she gives her all in a moving portrayal...Vogt is almost perfectly cast, capturing equally the poetic naivety and Wagnerian grandeur of Dvorak's music. There could be no more frightening Fritzl/Water Goblin than Günther Groissböck...The conductor, Tomáš Hanus, paces the score with energy”
8th December 2011
“Some scenes are almost unwatchable…But it's superbly done and is notable for a brave, perhaps career-best performance from Kristine Opolais in the title role. Klaus Florian Vogt is her emotionally insensitive Prince; Gunther Groissböck her truly horrifying father. It's forcefully conducted by Tomáš Hanus, too.”
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