Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Cilea - Adriana Lecouvreur / Bonynge Sutherland Opera Australia|
Actors: Joan Sutherland, Heather Begg, John Shaw, Anson Austin, John Wegner
Genres: Television, Musicals & Performing Arts
Cilea's romantic opera, based on the story of the renowned French actress Adrienne, is given here in a live recording of a lavish production by John Copley, which features the great Dame Joan Sutherland. Her luminous singi... more »
Sutherland was not made for verismo
Paul A. Dunphy | Bogota, New Jersey USA | 01/28/2000
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Adriana Lecouvreur is usually portrayed by sopranos (many past their prime) who still have some heft to their voices and can produce a dramatic punch. Joan Sutherland unfortunately has neither. Her technique carries her through the music but she barely explores the dramatic possibilities. Her declamation during "Giusto Cielo" and her entrance in Act One is embarassingly bad and her death scene is reminiscent of Lucia di Lammermoor. The production is a head-scratcher. Why set the opera in the late nineteenth century when Adrienne Lecouvreur was a historical figure of pre-Revolutionary French theater. The reference to Moliere being in the audience during the first act thus makes no sense nor does the presence of an Abbe. The supporting cast is more than adequate (except for John Shaws woofy Michonnet) though they seem to have to watch Bonynge continually. The sets and costumes are quite opulent"
Joseph Hart | Visalia, CA United States | 09/13/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I loved it. I had this on LP many years ago, but the very realistic groans of Adriana dying of poison were too much for me, so I chucked the set. However, when I had those LPs, I was familiar with the life of Adriana (I am no longer), and I could not believe the librettist would take a life so complex and interesting and boil it down to a plot like this. It was an adequate plot, but not when drawn from the life of Adriana. (Yes, I know she was French, but I'm saying Adriana anyway.) The sets were rich and colorful. The acting and singing by everyone were wonderful. The first act baffled me with all the passing of letters back and forth, I could make no sense of it and expected to be helplessly lost. Then from act two on the plot became quite simple, no plot at all. This is not my kind of music, it seemed like continuous recitative with no distinct tunes. But it was beautiful. It is not Sutherland's usual fare, though there are plenty of high notes for her to hit, and yes, you keenly perceptive people you, she's too old for the part. So what. I loved and recommend it. It was a pleasure. Also, I identified with the old man who had a secret love for her, and his horrible pain. It was in fact all pain. But it was beautiful nonetheless."