Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Art of Joan Sutherland|
Actors: Joan Sutherland, Richard Bonynge, Canadian Opera
Genres: Music Video & Concerts, Musicals & Performing Arts
Everything I hoped for
Joseph Hart | Visalia, CA United States | 09/01/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This DVD consists of 2 recitals, each about an hour long. I personally preferred the 1st one because the 2nd was sung to a piano accompaniment, and I always find this a letdown, preferring an orchestra. Nonetheless, both were great. These concerts were filmed in 1963 and 1969. (Sutherland looked much the same in the 80s as she did in the 60s, her husband tended more to show his age, though he is a personable, ingratiating, completely professional man nonetheless, and I love him.) Except the piano, I have only one quibble with the whole thing. The first recital (once it gets off the ground) is narrated by Sutherland, and she gives thumbnail sketches of the great female opera singers dating from the mid-19th centrury. Then in photograph-like frames, she sings an aria made famous by each of several of these women. It was fascinating. My gripe. Two or 3 arias were sung before this history, this premise began, and there was applause as though they were live performances. Once Sutherland began her narration, there was no applause. This prelude was incongruous to the rest of the program. That bothered me. But the rest was glorious. The 2nd recital was live to a packed hall, and there was not one cough or yawn that I noticed from beginning to end. It was sublime (as popular American song lyricists of the 1st half of the 20th century have redefined that word, perfectly pleasant and agreeable). This DVD is about $10 more expensive than the average opera on DVD from Amazon, but I recommend it anyway, even if you go hungry. Sutherland was beautiful. The 1st recital was fascinating, interesting. The 2nd recital was sweet and perfect. The 1st recital is arias from operas. The 2nd one is songs, according to the man who introduced it, favorites of Sutherland. Of course it is all a dream of bel canto, coloratura."