Thread: What opera have you been watching lately?

          
   
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  1. #1606
    Senior Member Veteran Member Povero Buoso's Avatar
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    I have finally ventured into the french part of the repertory! It took me long enough...

    Masenets Thaïs was a surprise. Firstly a surprise I watched it at all my thoughts had been moving towards one of the early Verdi operas but at the last minute I decided against it. Remembering that my faithful little opera pocket book guide (by Rupert Christiansen) had recommended that Thaïs was actually quite a lovely opera and given that the leads were singers I had liked in past productions and recommended by my little book I gave it a shot. My second surprise was how good it was and how much I enjoyed it. I enjoyed the story of the piece quite a lot. The singing was excellent the staging was also excellent and I also like the conducting. The music was very enjoyable and when I have the resources (the Gardelli Ernani set me back more than I would have liked but so so worth it) I will definitely be adding it to my ipod collection!!! (still kind of small it only has 25 or so operas but not including duplicates or triplicates...)

    The Mets 2008 Thaïs then comes in at a 9.5/10 I really enjoyed it and would definitely recommend a viewing of this version.
    "Non sono in vena" Rodolfo summing up P.B's feelings on his dissertation.

  2. #1607
    Opera Lively Media Consultant Top Contributor Member Ann Lander (sospiro)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Povero Buoso View Post
    I have finally ventured into the french part of the repertory! It took me long enough...

    Masenets Thaïs was a surprise. Firstly a surprise I watched it at all my thoughts had been moving towards one of the early Verdi operas but at the last minute I decided against it. Remembering that my faithful little opera pocket book guide (by Rupert Christiansen) had recommended that Thaïs was actually quite a lovely opera and given that the leads were singers I had liked in past productions and recommended by my little book I gave it a shot. My second surprise was how good it was and how much I enjoyed it. I enjoyed the story of the piece quite a lot. The singing was excellent the staging was also excellent and I also like the conducting. The music was very enjoyable and when I have the resources (the Gardelli Ernani set me back more than I would have liked but so so worth it) I will definitely be adding it to my ipod collection!!! (still kind of small it only has 25 or so operas but not including duplicates or triplicates...)

    The Mets 2008 Thaïs then comes in at a 9.5/10 I really enjoyed it and would definitely recommend a viewing of this version.
    Definitely worth it! It has a bonkers plot almost as silly as Il trovatore but sublime music.

  3. #1608
    Opera Lively News Coordinator Top Contributor Member MAuer's Avatar
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    I find myself coming back to this recording again and again for the musical performance – though I still want to wallop Claus Guth every time I watch it. JK and Adrianne Pieczonka are fabulous in the two leads, and one can only imagine how much more they could have brought to their portrayals if they weren’t shackled (no pun intended) by a directorial “concept.” There’s more luxury in the pit with the Vienna Philharmonic and conductor Franz Welser-Möst, whose interpretation I find less quirky than Harnoncourt’s with the Zürich Opera. Pieczonka will shortly be singing Leonore at the Met, this time with KFV as her Florestan. I’m looking forward to hearing them in the radio broadcast a week from today.
    Last edited by MAuer; March 26th, 2017 at 11:22 AM.

  4. #1609
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MAuer View Post


    I find myself coming back to this recording again and again for the musical performance – though I still want to wallop Claus Guth every time I watch it. JK and Adrianne Pieczonka are fabulous in the two leads, and one can only imagine how much more they could have brought to their portrayals if they weren’t shackled (no pun intended) by a directorial “concept.” There’s more luxury in the pit with the Vienna Philharmonic and conductor Franz Welser-Möst, whose interpretation I find less quirky than Harnoncourt’s with the Zürich Opera. Pieczonka will shortly be singing Leonore at the Met, this time with KFV as her Florestan. I’m looking forward to hearing them in the radio broadcast two weeks from today.
    If only they would also release this on CD.
    "Ah,non credea mirarti si presto estinto, o fiore." --Bellini, La Sonnambula (also written on his tomb).

  5. #1610
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    Nearly one hour in and enjoying it immensely:
    "Ah,non credea mirarti si presto estinto, o fiore." --Bellini, La Sonnambula (also written on his tomb).

  6. #1611
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Florestan View Post
    If only they would also release this on CD.
    without the sound effects.....
    Natalie

  7. #1612
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    without the sound effects.....
    Oh, it is worse than I realized, but now I do recall reading that there was weird sounds in place of the dialog or something like that. Think better to stick with the earlier Jonas Kaufmann DVD, which also has a wonderful Leonore in Camilla Nylund.
    "Ah,non credea mirarti si presto estinto, o fiore." --Bellini, La Sonnambula (also written on his tomb).

  8. #1613
    Opera Lively News Coordinator Top Contributor Member MAuer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Florestan View Post
    Oh, it is worse than I realized, but now I do recall reading that there was weird sounds in place of the dialog or something like that. Think better to stick with the earlier Jonas Kaufmann DVD, which also has a wonderful Leonore in Camilla Nylund.
    The Zürich version is still my favorite, even with Harnoncourt's idiosyncrasies.

  9. #1614
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    Zelmira with JDF and Kate Aldrich, and then the Australian Opera's Lakme.

    For G&S afficianados, the Aussie Pirates of Penzance is a hoot!!

  10. #1615
    Opera Lively Staff Member Top Contributor Member Hoffmann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnGerald View Post
    Zelmira with JDF and Kate Aldrich, and then the Australian Opera's Lakme.

    For G&S afficianados, the Aussie Pirates of Penzance is a hoot!!
    The Zelmira is JDF at his awesome best! How's the Lakme?

  11. #1616
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    Lakme is quite good. Staging is excellent, with wildly colorful sets and costumes. I would grade the singing as A-/B+. Disc quality in Blu ray is superb.

  12. #1617
    Opera Lively Staff Member Top Contributor Member Hoffmann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnGerald View Post
    Lakme is quite good. Staging is excellent, with wildly colorful sets and costumes. I would grade the singing as A-/B+. Disc quality in Blu ray is superb.
    It looks like there are 2 Opera Australia Lakmes - one with Sutherland and another with Emma Matthews. Should I assume you have the Sutherland?

    I don't typically watch DVDs, but would make an exception here as it likely is the only way to see this opera.

  13. #1618
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    I referred to the Emma Matthews version, which, being of much more recent vintage, has very much superior picture and sound. While I am a long time fan of Dame Joan, having stood to see her Lucia in the 1960s, her Lakme was done in the 70s and some reviewers have remarked on the quality of the VHS tape to DVD quality. I noted while posting this that Amazon's current price for the Blu ray is (GASP!!!) $129. Amazon UK shows a price of (GAG!!) over 160 pounds!! That literally boggles my mind!!

    The regular DVD on Amazon is a more reasonable $30.

    My Blu ray cost me $23, inclusive of S&H when I bought it in Nov 2015!

  14. #1619
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Semiramide from Munich with Joyce DD, Daniela Barcellona, Lawrence Brownlee and Alex Exposito. What a cast.
    Natalie

  15. #1620
    Opera Lively News Coordinator Top Contributor Member MAuer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnGerald View Post
    I referred to the Emma Matthews version, which, being of much more recent vintage, has very much superior picture and sound. While I am a long time fan of Dame Joan, having stood to see her Lucia in the 1960s, her Lakme was done in the 70s and some reviewers have remarked on the quality of the VHS tape to DVD quality. I noted while posting this that Amazon's current price for the Blu ray is (GASP!!!) $129. Amazon UK shows a price of (GAG!!) over 160 pounds!! That literally boggles my mind!!

    The regular DVD on Amazon is a more reasonable $30.

    My Blu ray cost me $23, inclusive of S&H when I bought it in Nov 2015!
    Amazon's pricing is a major reason why most of my purchases now are made with Presto Classical. Even figuring in foreign transaction fee and trans-Atlantic shipping, their costs are far more reasonable. Presto's packaging is also much sturdier.

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