Cher Public

  • m. croche: “I think New York feels envious in one way and critical in another way of all the new operatic activity taking place... 7:43 PM
  • Bill: Camille – James King was a wonderful Bacchus and until later in his career seemed to sail through the role with only the... 7:14 PM
  • Bluebeard: whom I have found….apologies. 7:13 PM
  • Bluebeard: Joyce Didonato, Anna Caterina Antonacci, Cecilia Bartoli are just a few who I find or have found excellent on recording in... 7:13 PM
  • Bill: Amerjacquino – I saw Murray a number of times as the Komponist in Vienna and never much liked her in the role – no... 7:10 PM
  • Kassandra: Speaking of Theodora, the 1st of September (already overseas) was for the Eastern Roman Empire (Byzance) the beginning of the... 6:57 PM
  • steveac10: So by your terms, Flagstad should have stuck to Fledermaus and Faust for the balance of her career and never ventured into the... 6:55 PM
  • Bill: Welser-Moest apparently prefers sopranos as the Komponist. And many sopranos could do the role these days but just no longer try it... 6:55 PM

Something for everyone

La Cieca (pictured, obviously), hereby declares that, from historical documents to the dernier cri of regie, October’s new DVD releases are a potpourri of objets d’art.

Arabella features Emily Magee (Arabella), Genia Kühmeier (Zdenka), Tomasz Konieczny (Mandryka), Michael Schade (Matteo, Jägeroffizier). Franz Welser-Möst (direction). Orchestra of the Vienna State Opera. Sven-Eric Bechtolf (stage direction). Recorded at the Wiener Staatsoper 9 May 2012.

Stefan Herheim, one of the worlds’ most sought after operatic directors, superimposes the modern over the traditional in this dramatic and thought provoking new version of Puccini’s La Boheme. Freedom, love, and even death all demand a price that must be paid and the opera opens with Mimì (Marita Sølberg) dying of cancer in a modern intensive care unit; the overture begins just after the ECG machine displays its unmistakable flat green line.”

I Due Foscari is the latest in C Major’s “Tutto Verdi” series, a complete edition of straightforward productions on video.

If you’ve always wondered what La Traviata would look and sound like performed in Sydney Harbor, now’s your chance to find out.

For a more serious take on the Verdi, there’s also a Konwitschny production from Graz.

A blast from the past is Die Tote Stadt in a classic 1983 performance of Götz Friedrich’s celebrated production, recorded live at the Deutsche Oper, Berlin. Heinrich Hollreiser conducts the orchestra and chorus, with performances by James King, Karan Armstrong, William Murray, Margit Neubauer and Donald Grobe.

And a blast from the present is Wozzeck directed by Dmitri Tcherniakov.

A more familiar name this side of the pond, David McVicar, directs Die Meistersinger Von Nurnberg from the Glyndebourne Festival.

McVicar’s favorite soprano (oh, everyone’s, really!) Angela Gheorghiu stars in Tosca at the Royal Opera.

And finally, a video so tantalizing it doesn’t even have a trailer yet! In Mission, “Cecilia Bartoli returns with another spellbinding adventure exploring the music and mystery of the maverick priest Agostino Steffani…. This spectacular was filmed at the Chateau de Versailles and features many of its most exquisite rooms and design – including the famous Hall of Mirrors – as a backdrop to Cecilia’s fabulous performances, and stunning dresses.”


  • Satisfied says:

    Herheim??? Konwitschny??? AND Tcherniakov???

    My Christmas wishlist just got started!

  • Buster says:

    I love Donald Grobe on the Sonja Schöner Martha. He sounds more masculine than Peter Anders, and much more involved than Gedda. Only Wunderlich is a better Lyonel. Most of his career was in Germany, not? Wonder why.

  • phoenix says:

    Some of the ‘Tutto Verdi’ DVD series performances I do recollect from the original broadcasts -- and some I do not.
    - If I remember correctly, the Due Foscari (advertised above) with Tatjana Serjan as Lucrezia & Renzetti conducting was good -- although he is in practically every recording I have of Foscari, Bruson owned the role of the old Doge for decades and well did he deserved it!
    - I don’t remember the Oberto in this same ‘Tutto Verdi’ series (Parodi (Oberto), Pentcheva (Cuniza), Sartori (Riccardo), Sassu (Leonora), Allemandi conducting -- Parma -- circa 2003?). Does anybody recollect it?

  • Orlando Furioso says:

    The Meistersinger is not yet released (or advertised, as far as I can tell) in the US, right?

    Also of interest in Something for Everyone: the actress playing the crucial role of the daughter, Jane Carr. She had been one of the “Jean Brodie girls” shortly before, and then she rather dropped out of sight for American viewers until she turned up as the therapy group leader on the sitcom Dear John (“Were there any… sexual problems?”) for four seasons. And now she’s doing the sprightly-old-British-lady thing, on one of the Ellen DeGeneres JCP ads, and as a nanny on this week’s How I Met Your Mother. How time passes.

    • phoenix says:

      The Glyndebourne Meistersinger DVD from summer before last is scheduled for release in USA 30 October 2012.

      • Orlando Furioso says:

        So it is. Thanks! Interesting how an Amazon search for “meistersinger glyndebourne” gets 4 hits, none of them this. (And “meistersinger finley” hits only his aria CD.) And Opus Arte’s own website is down for remodeling. But there it is, way down on the Meistersinger search page. Now pre-ordered.

  • honorary virgin says:

    Let’s add this to the October DVD release mix: Arthaus has Ligeti’s “Le Grand Macabre” as performed (in English!) at the Grand Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona in a well-traveled staging by La Fura dels Baus (which clearly thought it needed an extra helping of weirdness; the stage is dominated by the figure of a huge, naked woman, whom we see choking on a snack in a preliminary film clip).

  • Marita Solberg as MIMI? For REAL? Huh. Well, well.

    Got the Meistersinger and wrote about it already roughly three weeks ago (I think). Got the LePage Ring and more on this anon. It kinda makes sense as an HD extravaganza, it actually looks good on HD TV but there’s no soul. The production is completely, utterly traditional. I wasn’t offended.