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Donizetti (6)

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Gaetano Donizetti

1. Pia de Tolomei 2005 (Flv)

510 MB

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Pia - Patrizia Ciofi
Ghino degli Armieri - Dario Schmunck
Nello della Pietra - Andrew Schroeder
Rodrigo - Laura Polverelli
Piero - Daniel Borowski
Ubaldo - Francesco Meli
Bice - Clara Polito
Lamberto - Carlo Cigni

La Fenice Theater Chorus & Orchestra
Conductor : Paolo Arrivabeni
Place : Venezia,Italy

This is the first dvd of Pia di Tolomei, one of Donizetti's lesser known tragic works. The production was filmed in Venice, and stars Patrizia Ciofi, who in recent years has established herself as a bel canto artist of not only great vocal accomplishment, but dramatic intensity. Dario Schmuck plays Ghino, who carries a torch for Pia, and Andrew Schroeder plays Nello, Pia's husband. And Laure Polverelli is in the travesti role of Rodrigo, with whom Pia exchanges loving letters.

First things first: the production is seriously one of the stupidest I have ever seen. Not untraditional (people are dressed in vaguely period style clothing), but the genius director had the great idea of indicating scene changes by huge panels that describe the scene in huge block letters. For example, Pia's garden is indicated by a huge panel that goes from the top to the bottom of the stage, and it says, in ginormous block letters, PIA. For the more complex scenes, even bigger panels and block letters. Sometimes multiple block lettered panels. Sometimes there are flags and banners hanging down with letters presumably describing the scene change. Whatever. It is simply mind-boggling. The rest of the production veers between the vaguely traditional (Pia's house, Rodrigo's prison) and mere panels to express scene changes.

I think this opera never gained much traction becaus of the bait-and-switch nature of the libretto. We think Pia has a lover (Rodrigo), but after a bunch of love letters and arias turns out Rodrigo's just her brother. And for this she gets poisoned? A bit silly, even for bel canto. Donizetti's music is also not at its most inspired. He writes beautiful arias for Pia, but music for the rest of the cast is somewhat by-the-numbers. Originally, the censors wanted a happy ending, so Donizetti supplied one, but this production goes back to the traditional tragic ending.

The singing, however, is fantastic. Patrizia Ciofi is one of those artists that just gets better every time I see/hear her. The first time I heard her, I thought her a bit screechy, but now I really appreciate her emotional intensity, and how she can color her voice to express so many different moods. Her final scene (of course, like all dying heroines, she has one last long aria before she expires) is beautifully sung. All the singing is excellent, and its a really large cast. I've never heard of must of them but they are all very idiomatic and intense, and act very well. But I just wish the directors had given just a wee bit of thought to this production, and come up with a better idea than block letter panels. After all, dvd's of Pia don't exactly grow on trees. --- Ivy Lin (NY NY)

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2. La Fille du Regiment 2007 (Mp4)

610 MB

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Marie - Natalie Dessay
Tonio - Juan Diego Florez
Sulplice - Alessandro Corbelli
La Maquise - Felicity Palmer
Hortensius - Donald Maxwell
Caporale - Bryan Secombe
Un Paysan - Luke Price
La Duchesse - Dawn French

Covent Garden Orchestra & Chorus
Bruno Campanella – conductor

In January 2007, superstar soprano Natalie Dessay, joined on stage by acclaimed tenor Juan Diego Florez dazzled British audiences in Laurent Pelly's new production of Donizetti's "LA FILLE DU REGIMENT". The perfectly staged & cast production became the operatic event of the year, receiving rave press reviews & rapturous audience ovations.

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3. Lucia di Lammermoor 2011 (Mp4)

490 MB

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Lucia - Natalie Dessay, soprano
Edgardo - Joseph Calleja, tenor
Enrico - Ludovic Tezier, baritone
Raimondo - Kwangchul Youn, bass
Normanno - Philip Webb, tenor
Alisa - Theodora Hanslowe, mezzo-soprano
Arturo - Matthew Plenk, tenor

MET Orchestra & Chorus
Patrick Summers - conductor

Metropolitan Opera, 19 маrch 2011.

The tragic tale of "the bride of Lammermoor" has always been a favorite of opera-goers and sopranos alike. Yet with the riveting singing actress Natalie Dessay in the title role, Lucia's plight and descent into madness take on another dimension. Joseph Calleja is an ardent Edgardo, the man she loves but is not allowed to marry. Instead, her brother Enrico (Ludovic Tézier) forces her into a union with the rich Arturo (Matthew Plenk) to save the family fortunes. It proves too much to bear for Lucia—but certainly not for Met audiences, who hailed Dessay's stunning performance of this iconic bel canto role.

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4. Anna Bolena 2011 (Flv)

900 MB

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Anna Bolena - Anna Netrebko
Giovanna Seymour - Ekaterina Gubanova
Enrico VIII - Ildar Abdrazakov
Lord Riccardo Percy - Stephen Costello
Smeton - Tamara Mumford
Hervey - Eduardo Valdes
Lord Rochefort ( Anna's brother ) - Keith Miller

MET Orchestra & Chorus
Marco Armiliato – conductor

Ms. Netrebko sang the punishing title role of Donizetti’s “Anna Bolena” to open the Met’s season, the company’s first production of this breakthrough Donizetti work from 1830. The extended last scene was the high point of Ms. Netrebko’s performance as the distraught British queen (based on the historic Anne Boleyn, the second wife of Henry VIII). Having been falsely condemned for betraying her husband, Anna drifts in and out of sanity.

Ms. Netrebko sang an elegantly sad aria with lustrous warmth, aching vulnerability and floating high notes. When the audience broke into prolonged applause and bravos, Ms. Netrebko seemed to break character and smiled a couple of times, though her look could have been taken as appropriate to the dramatic moment, since the delusional Anna is lost in reverie about happy days with her former lover.

Then at the end of this “Mad Scene,” when Anna, restored to horrific reality, curses the king and his new queen, Giovanna (Jane Seymour), and stalks off to her execution, Ms. Netrebko dispatched Donizetti’s cabaletta, all brilliant coloratura runs and vehement phrases, with a defiance that brought down the house. ---Anthony Tomassini, thelastverista.wordpress.com

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5. Don Pasquale 2010 (Flv)

660 MB

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Don Pasquale - John Del Carlo
Norina - Anna Netrebko
Malatesta - Mariusz Kwiecien
Ernesto - Matthew Polenzani

MET Orchestra & Chorus
James Levine – conductor

A red hot ticket at the Metropolitan Opera in 2010/2011 was Donizetti’s comic gem, Don Pasquale, with Anna Netrebko reviving Norina, the part that made her a star in New York. Opera summed up the simple truth: “. . . everyone adored her”.

John Del Carlo’s impressive singing and acting chops as the Don are given every boost by Otto Schenk’s hilarious staging and James Levine’s witty conducting. Leading this opera for the first time at the Met, the renowned maestro demonstrates that his gifts suit Donizetti as perfectly as Wagner. Mariusz Kwiecień and Matthew Polenzani scintillate as Malatesta and Ernesto.

When Norina slaps Pasquale, the old man sees how deluded he has been to believe that the young beauty loves him. The San Francisco Chronicle paid homage to this turning point thus: “Netrebko captures the moment that gives the opera a heart it otherwise would lack”.

Filmed in November 2010, the DVD features backstage intermission interviews caught during the hubbub of performance. ---prestoclassical.co.uk

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6. L'Elisir d'Amore 2005 (Flv)

585 MB

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Adina - Mariola Cantarero
Nemorino - Joseph Calleja
Belcore - Christopher Schaldenbrand
Dulcamara - Simón Orfila
Giannetta - Khibla Gerzmava
Moretto - José Luis Pérez

Choeur et orchestre du Gran Teatre del Liceu
Josep Caballé-Domenech – conductor

Barcelona, 27 april 2005

L'elisir d'amore (The Elixir of Love) is a melodramma giocoso in two acts. Felice Romani wrote the Italian libretto, after Eugène Scribe's libretto for Daniel-François-Esprit Auber's Le philtre (1831).

L'elisir d'amore is one of the most frequently performed of all Donizetti's operas, and there are a number of recordings. It appears as number 12 on the Operabase list of the most-performed operas worldwide] It contains the popular aria "Una furtiva lagrima," one of the most famous and often-excerpted arias in all of opera.

Josep Caballé-Domenech made his debut with the Liceu in Barcelona in spring 2004 in performances of Mozart's Così fan tutte. He conducted a new production of Haydn's Il mondo della luna in Barcelona in May 2004 and returned in Spring 2005 for a production of Donizetti's L'elisir d'amore and for performances of Granados Goyescas at the Savonlinna Festival in summer 2005.

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Last Updated (Wednesday, 01 May 2013 18:41)

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