Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Donizetti - Lucia di Lammermoor|
Actors: Joan Sutherland, Richard Greagor, Malcolm Donnelly, Richard Bonynge, Clifford Grant
Director: John Copley
Genres: Indie & Art House, Musicals & Performing Arts
Ever since Joan Sutherland?s historic first "Lucia" at Covent Garden in 1959, the critical acclaim for her interpretation of this role has been unending. And the praise for this performance by Dame Joan read as such:"Joan... more »
The Australian Revival for La Stupenda
R OMeara | Los Angeles, CA USA | 03/28/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is an unusually good production for those who have come to notice the generally second-rate nature of the Australian Opera productions on DVD/VHS. This is a 1986 production centered entirely, and rightfully, around Sutherland. The vocal poise and execution are phenomenal and, in some ways, better than the 1982 performance from the Metropolitan. Typically, for AO, the diva is surrounded by very modest singers, so forget any of the rapturous singing one associates with Sutherland and Pavarotti, Kraus, Domingo, Milnes, Horne, Cossotto, etc. Still, the performance is atmospheric and effective. What's most striking, upon reflection, is that at age 60, this soprano could outdo anybody on the planet, then or now. When one considers that a pinched and off-pitch singer such as Anna Netrebko could earn the soubriquette ":The Belle of Bel Canto" for her decidely unlegato and shrill rendering of Bellini's Elvira, then perhaps opera in America is the parakeet in the coal mine: there's little question we are experiencing a precipitous cultural decline."
Joan Sutherland Shines Above a Rather So-so Cast
Paula A. Stockslager | 07/25/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I first got into buying this DVD via Youtube, seeing Miss Sutherland's 1982 MET "Lucia." Her E-flat at the end of the Mad Scene seemed so quiet, that I thought, "Hmm, I wonder if this E-flat is the last one she sang, since it wasn't the most impressive?" I was wrong. She does sing her very last E-flat (that I know of) in this 1986 Sydney Production. It's quite short, but it's still huge, and echoes throughout the auditorium. So, that's the main reason I decided to buy this DVD, but not the only reason, as I soon realized after viewing. High notes aside, Sutherland's singing is fantastic. Yes, her coloratura passages aren't as fast as the 1982 MET version, but they're all still pitch perfect (I don't think she hit a wrong note all night!), and overall, she seems to be better, vocally, than in the other version, which is a feat only Joan could pull of, being four years later than the MET version. Also, her acting, while not fantastic, is still very good. My favourite part of her acting is at the end of the Mad Scene where she runs up to Raimondo for support, and she looks up at him as a child would, nodding her head, as if to ask "Is it going to be o.k?" When he shakes his head, she looks terrrified, and runs off in another direction, frightened at the prospect that once again, she's got no one to catch her when she trips. I LOVE that touch! And now for the supporting cast. To be perfectly honest, after hearing people like Chaliapin and Pavarotti, I wasn't very pleased with the supporting cast. All of the tenors seem to have that annoying terribly nasal timber about them. The baritone and bass were of the kind that when singing high parts, sounded weak, and low parts, sounding like they weren't singing, but talking. It's hard to explain, rather than just listening to it. Acting-wise, though, the supporting cast all did a bang-up job, probably better than Joan. An earlier reviewer said that the lighting was too dark, and while I agree, you can still see all the characters, it sets a good moody atmosphere, and you get used to it after about 10 or so minutes. So, buy this DVD? Yes, for Joan's overall singing, it's a better deal; but buy the MET one too, because of the fantastic scenery and supporting cast (i.e. Alfredo Kraus)."