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Puccini (5)

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Giacomo Puccini

1. Madama Butterfly 2005 (Mp4)

450 MB

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Elke Schary (Soprano), 
Giorgio Stendoro (Baritone), 
Marius Rintzler (Bass),
Michel Sénéchal (Tenor), 
Christa Ludwig (Mezzo Soprano), 
Robert Kerns (Baritone),
Mirella Freni (Soprano), 
Placido Domingo (Tenor)

Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Herbert von Karajan - conductor

The film was created in Berlin in 1974 to a playback of Karajan’s recording of the opera earlier that year. For Madame Butterfly, director Jean-Pierre Ponnelle has adopted his most cinematic approach, using flash-backs, dream-sequences and having the characters “think” certain lines instead of singing them. Using all these tricks combined with a deep understanding for the struggles of the opera’s sad heroine, Ponnelle’s Butterfly is a thoughtful, genuine portrait of a woman lost between rival cultural worlds. Mirella Freni gives the performance of her life in the title role, bringing “poetic value… to every considered word, phrase and gesture”, as the New York Times wrote. With Plácido Domingo and Christa Ludwig in the supporting roles, as well as Herbert von Karajan conducting the Vienna Philharmonic, this DVD is a visual and musical delight. ---arkivmusic.com

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2. La Boheme 2005 (Flv)

500 MB

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Mimi' - Cristina Gallardo Domas
Rodolfo - Marcello Giordani
Marcello - Michael Volle
Musetta - Elena Mosuc
Coline - Laslzo Polgar
Schaunard - Cheyne Davidson

Zurich Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Frank Welser-Moest - conductor

Opernhaus Zürich, Festspiele 2005

La Boheme is considered one of the "three or four most popular operas in the repertory". The opera, with music by Giacomo Puccini and libretto by Luigi Illica and Giuseppe Giacosa is based on Murger's Scenes de la Vie de Boheme. Its plot centers around a community of artists in Paris, particularly between the romantic relationship of poet Rodolfo and grisette Mimi. Like the parallel relationship of Rodolfo's roommate Marcello and the beautiful Musetta, Mimi and Rodolfo's love is not without conflict. At the end of the opera, however, they are united tragically as Mimi returns to the garret and dies there, surrounded by her friends. Musical devices emphazise the libretto, which consists of common language turned poetic. For example, when Rudolfo and Marcello burn Marcello's play for warmth, "the orchestra depicts the reviving fire with a brilliant texture of pizzicato strings and detached woodwind and brass chords". --- mtholyoke.edu

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3.Madama Butterfly (Maazel) 1986 (Flv)

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440 Mb

Yasuko Hayashi (Soprano)
Peter Dvorsky (Tenor)
Hak-Nam Kim (Mezzo Soprano)
Giorgio Zancanaro (Baritone)
Anna Antonacci (Mezzo Soprano)

Teatro alla Scala Chorus
Teatro alla Scala Orchestra
Lorin Maazel - conductor

 

What distinguishes this excellent production of Puccini's Madama Butterfly from others is its intensely Japanese flavor. La Scala engaged a Japanese director, and he adopted many conventions of Japanese theater, including the dark-clad stagehands, whom the audience is supposed to not notice, a Zen-style rock garden rather than the profusion of blossoms usually seen, and the use of red fabrics (ribbon and rug) to symbolize the blood in the suicide scene.

The singing and acting often has a Japanese restraint (unexpected but not unwelcome in an Italian opera house). The Japanese Cio-Cio-San (Hayashi Yasuko) and Korean Suzuki (Hack-Nam Kim) give a special authenticity to the casting. An Italian singer, Ernesto Gavazzi, has the role of the slimy marriage broker, Goro, but this works quite well because Goro has adopted Western mannerisms. George Dvorsky is a convincing Pinkerton, Giorgio Zancanaro is a sympathetic Sharpless, and the singing is good throughout, though seldom electrifying. --Joe McLellan, amazon.com

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4.Tosca - Royal Opera House (Flv)

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710 Mb

Tosca ..... Angela Gheorghiu (Soprano)
Cavaradossi ..... Jonas Kaufmann (Tenor)
Scarpia ..... Bryn Terfel (Baritone)
Spoletta ..... Hubert Francis (Tenor)
Angelotti ..... Lukas Jakobski (Bass)
Sacristan ..... Jeremy White (Bass)
Sciarrone ..... Zheng Zhou (Baritone)
Shepherd Boy......William Payne (treble)

Chorus and Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden
Antonio Pappano - conductor

 

A superb cast and great direction make this version of Tosca stand out. The singing is flawless by the three main characters. Kaufmann in particular is not only possessedof a wonderful voice, but is also an amazing actor, bring real emotion and depth to his character, Caravadossi. Gheorghiu is also good and has the voice to cope with the demands of the part of Tosca, though i do find some of her acting a bit wooden. Terfel is a revelation as Scarpia, making him genuinely threatening. You can believe that he might have struck terror into the populace by his very presence. There is little to fault in this production and I would recommend it to anyone, whether familiar with the opera or a newcomer to it. ---Jean Osborne-Moss, amazon.com

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5.Turandot Met 1988

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Eva Martón (Soprano), 
Placido Domingo (Tenor),
Paul Plishka (Baritone),
Hugues Cuénod (Tenor)

The Metropolitan Opera Chorus and Orchestra
James Levine – conductor

 

The costuming, singing, and acting in this production is marvelous, lavish, [insert superlative here]. HOWEVER, there are moments when the 'miking' is not great and that 'stage hollowness' comes through. This sound recording problem is mostly evident in the third act.

That said it is a wonderful production that I and my six y.o. daughter appreciate. Domingo is in fine voice and the ladies as Turandot and Liu are spectacular. Five Stars. [A-] Wonderful production. Only two possible flaws to note. The first is that the stage is so chocked full of people at times that it is hard follow the action (at least this is true for small fry). And second, there is a slight flaw in the recording quality in the last act. We are happy with this production and would gladly purchased it again. Notes for Parents of Young Children: The music and production is delightful, HOWEVER, like many opera's this one has some violence. There are heads-on-pikes at one point. Not to mention the hunky swordsman who is sharpening his blade in order to decapitate that poor Prince of Persia. Oh yes, and poor Lui kills herself in the last act. ---Pam_Tee, lunch.com

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Last Updated (Tuesday, 14 May 2013 21:09)

 
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