Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Donizetti - Lucia di Lammermoor / Bonfadelli Alvarez Frontali Olivieri Palazzi Fournillier Genoa Opera|
Actors: Donizetti, Marcelo Alvarez, Stefania Bonfadelli, Patrick Fournillier, Roberto Frontali
Genres: Indie & Art House, Music Video & Concerts, Musicals & Performing Arts
In this staging for the opera house in Genoa, Graham Vick concentrated all his attention on the performers and employed the simplest of means to create spaces representing the atmosphere of the scenes rather than concrete ... more »
Vocally Splendid, Questionably Staged
John G. Gleeson Sr. | Frederic, Mi USA | 10/31/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"At the outset, with its many strengths and reltively few, but distracting flaws I liked this version a lot and recommend it to all lovers of good bel canto opera.
WEAKNESSES: There are basically two areas where this version stumbles: sets and staging. The distractions are not constant, but when they occur, they are disruptive. For example, in the Act I duet between Edgardo and Lucia, there is a lot of unnecessary business with the singers' tartan cloaks. There are some really strange staging effects in the opening chorus, and some characters are running around in Prussian Army coats and headgear, which do not come into existance for many years.
1. This is a complete performance with no cuts. Enrico sings both choruses of his Act I cabaletta, and the Act II, Scene i duet between Enrico and edgardo is done here.
2. The performers can sing and act.
I like Stefania Bonfadelli; She is a believeable Lucia. Sure, there have been several sopranos who deliver a better vocal performance (Sutherland, Moffo and Caballe come to mind), but Bonfadelli delivers a solid interpretation of a young, emotionally unstable woman. Her vocal interpretaion is excellent, with excellent production from bottom to top with never a sign of fatigue.
I also liked Alvarez interpretation of Edgardo. He is vocally fantastic, and does an excellent acting job.
Robert Frontali is a solid Enrico and Mirco Palazzi as Raimondo, has a lovely voice, although this padre must be a recent graduate of divinity school, because he is very young for the role.
Because Bonfadelli and Alvarez are also relatively young, they make their performances more believeable than watching performers who are well into middle age try to project qualities that they no longer possess.
3. THE CONDUCTOR:
Patrick Fournillier conducts a performance that is definitive. Tempi, shading, etc., are all near perfect.
4. DISC QUALITY:
In a word, splendid. The picture quality is first rate, and with the DTS option engaged, folks down the block can also enjoy the sound. TDK is continuing to roll out high quality opera for the home viewer.
The best way I can express information to the potential buyer is to state whether a disc gets played every now and then, or gets repeated replays, because of the enjoyable experience of " re-attending" the performance. This Lucia will NOT languish on the shelf. With its shortcomings, it is still first rate opera."
Aggressive Arms | Philadelphia, PA USA | 06/25/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Whether you'll want to own this opera depends I think on how you view opera on DVD. If you're only buying discs you'll want to watch again and again and again, there should be some better, classic recordings for you. But if you are amassing a large collection and think 25 bucks isn't outrageous for an evening's enjoyment (compared to, say, a dinner out that disappoints, money wasted at the bar, or even a bummer of a trip to the opera house at three times the price), getting this makes sense.
The production has drawn some criticism from other reviewers. I generally liked it. It complements the characters' personalities, and, as the product description above states, it was intended not to stand on its own, but rather focus attention on the principals and the drama. I don't think I would agree that it's insufficiently dark. In point of fact, and I may be bordering on heresy here, for an opera whose plot is quite dark, the music isn't always so. In any event, the staging is quite dark throughout, and the near-constant full moon works well. The chorus is nearly a pack of zombies, though when backing the principals, they sound strong enough.
Alvarez is terrific. His voice has a wonderful quality, and his portrayal is suitably dramatic without exaggeration. The latter can work on stage, but in the close-ups integral to DVD, it can seem out of place, as it does to some extent with Bonfadelli's mad scene. I also thought once or twice that she was shrill (though to my mind it's only the superlative soprano that can escape this criticism).
The Raimondo, as another reviewer pointed out, is quite good, especially in the final 40 minutes or so. Orchestra and conductor are faultless."
Not Bad...Just Not Good!
Matthew S. Baggarly | 11/29/2005
(2 out of 5 stars)
"This production of Lucia is not the best there is. The acting is great and the set is very unique; however, the singing is not so good. Bonfadelli's voice is fine, just not suited for this particular role (in my opinion). The dynamic range of Bonfadelli's voice is not that great...there are many chances for beautiful, controlled pianissimo singing and it just doesn't happen. I think that the phrasing and breathing could have been a little more accurate. In the "Mad Scene" the staccato notes are good but the legato phrasing is a bit chopy. As I mentioned earlier, the acting is good, the facial expressions and mannerisms are very good, but the voice does not reflect what we see. I would highly recommend purchasing the French version LUCIE with Patrizia Ciofi...her voice is stunning and the acting is done very tastefully and holds true to the character. The French version is slightly different but still very pleasing to listen to."
Great audio recording, decent video
figaro | Eugene, OR United States | 01/20/2010
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The main singers are all terrific in this video. Bonfadelli as Lucia is a delight, and very pretty. She has a darker voice than you generally hear in this role, but it is not super-dark, and her high notes are rock-solid. Alvarez' voice is gorgeous and he sings with great passion becoming Edgardo. The Enrico has a very strong voice and solid high notes and his facial expressions remind me of Renato Bruson - not as pretty of a voice as Bruson's, but pleasant enough and easy to hear. The Chaplain has a beautiful voice and is a good singer. The Normanno (captain of the guard), isn't as good as the principles; the Arturo, with his handful of lines, is awful; and the Alisa (Lucia's companion), is quite good.
The sets are pretty enough and the costumes generally French-style. It appears that at some point, someone in the costumes department realized this opera is set in Scotland and so they ran out and picked up some plaid horse blankets from the local feed store, and some 'blanket choreography' was thrown in to convince us these are real Scottish tartans - kind of distracting and also humorous.
All the singers look good in the show, except Alvarez, who is over-weight, and made to wear the long, slicked-back mullet-style wig he is often saddled with. Too bad - his hair is probably his greatest natural feature.
I have watched this dvd two or three times and played it as an audio recording countless times and am very glad I purchased it."