Search - Britten - Peter Grimes / Davis, Vickers, Harper, Bailey, Royal Opera Covent Garden on DVD

Britten - Peter Grimes / Davis, Vickers, Harper, Bailey, Royal Opera Covent Garden
Britten - Peter Grimes / Davis Vickers Harper Bailey Royal Opera Covent Garden
Actors: Jon Vickers, Colin Davis
Genres: Musicals & Performing Arts
NR     2003     2hr 35min

Royal Opera Chorus. Peter Grimes was the work that established Benjamin Britten as a major musical force when it was first performed in 1945. It is now universally acknowledged as one of the twentieth century's finest oper...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Jon Vickers, Colin Davis
Genres: Musicals & Performing Arts
Sub-Genres: Classical
Studio: Kultur Video
Format: DVD - Color
DVD Release Date: 11/18/2003
Release Year: 2003
Run Time: 2hr 35min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 1
Edition: Classical
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Extraordinary theater!
D. J. Edwards | Cheshire, CT United States | 12/01/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I find it amazing that no one has bought this dvd or just hasn't taken the time to share comments on the performance. The staging is austere but very effective. The singing is excellent right down to the smallest rolls. And Vickers owns the role of Peter Grimes probably for ever. Granted his voice is not to everyone's taste but we can say this about any major singer. Colin Davis does great by the orchestra and everyone is in stride with the drama of the piece. I hoped this doens't become an underated and under appreciated performance. It deserves much more. This dvd belongs in every one's collection even if they don't like mid twentieth century opera. This is a classic!"
G. Miller | Montrose, CO USA | 02/18/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"To the casual listener, Britten may be an acquired taste. And this opera is probably the most accessible of all Britten's works - in other words, a good place to start. In my opinion, it's an unforgettable experience, one that only grows on you with rehearing.

It's a grim story of a fisherman ill at ease with others. He's lost an apprentice at sea and is suspected of having physcally abused the boy. While one woman, Ellen Orford, tries to be his friend, the village gives him no room in their busy, opinionated, suspicious world. He is a monster, unwelcome in their tight little society, a creature to be feared and shunned. When Grimes acquires a new apprentice we know the results will be tragic.

In this recording, the title role is portrayed by Jon Vickers who made this one of his personal triumphs. To see it as well as hear the magnificent singing more than doubles the satisfaction of the performance.

I remember hearing the premiere radio broadcast of this piece from the Met when I was a teenager - I'm in my 70's now. Even then its strange story mesmerized me. Now, after many hearings, it is a joy to finally see what my imagination could not conjure up.

This performance is intense, focused, brooding, in every way "seaworthy" for anyone who turns to opera for a musical experience that is both beautiful and terrible. The fate of Peter Grimes will stay with you long after the credits have run."
Peter Grimes
C. Boerger | Columbus, OH USA | 01/22/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I was incredibly moved by this DVD. Peter Grimes is a masterpiece, one of the all time great operas. Britten's music has the dark orchestration of Verdi, the lushness of Puccini, but he brings it all together into his own unique and thoroughly modern sound. John Vickers is sometimes painful to watch, so deeply does he invoke the tormented soul-searching of the title character. Perhaps no opera since Otello(with the exception perhaps of Strauss' Elektra and Berg's Wozzeck) has captured alienation so well, but Peter Grimes is even more alone than Verdi's title character. Like Otello, as well as Elektra and Wozzeck, Grimes is unsympathetic in a lot of ways, but that's what makes him human, and we feel for him just the same. This production is just exquisite."
Difficult but beautiful
R. P Winthrop | Farmville, VA United States | 09/06/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The contrast between the lyrical and beautiful music and the difficult anti-hero, Peter Grimes, is stunning. Vickers is perfect as the pathetic and frightening Grimes. Heather Harper is beautiful as the woman who tries to hold it together and fails.

The sets are simple, but effective. Every actor plays his or her part well; there are no weak links. While it is a story about Grimes, each of the minor characters is carefully deliniated and you feel as if you know the narrow and limited world of this small fishing village by the end of the opera. All the voices are perfect for the roles. It is difficult to imagine a finer production."