Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Maria Callas The Eternal Maria Callas|
Actor: Maria Callas
Director: Maria Callas
Genres: Musicals & Performing Arts
The best of Maria Callas on DVD from EMI
Paul A. Tassone | Glenwood, NSW , Australia | 10/07/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"To honour the 30th Anniversary of the death of Maria Callas, EMI Classics has put together a compilation of the best moments from its collection of DVD featuring the diva. Thus,there are moments from the television concerts Callas recorded in Hamburg, London and Paris, the interviews she recorded in her home in 1968, and for Paris TV in 1965 & 1969, plus scenes from the 1987 documentary "Life And Art."
Of primary interest is the 1957 RAI TV performance of "Casta Diva" not released by EMI Classics previously and thought lost for 40 years until it was aired on Italian TV in 1997 as part of the 20th anniversary memorial tribute to Callas.
This is a good compilation of clips from these disparate sources and will serve as a good introduction to the diva for new fans. Long term fans who have all the previous EMI Classics DVD of Callas will only be interested in the 1957 "Casta Diva." However, it is a well presented collection and worth a look."
A Brilliant tribute to a Brilliant Artist.
Lloyd G. Kay | Asheville, NC | 01/15/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"My favorite portion of this DVD, apart from the singing, is the interview with Harcourt. It explains why she was such a wonderful actress as well as a superb singer. She was able to colour her voice to fit each character she created, thereby bringing them to life each in their own way, on the DVD before the interview there is Callas singing Carmen. Her Eyes flash and she brings to life the character in a brief few minutes. After hearing that and what she says to Harcourt about the character of Carmen, she would have been a definitive Carmen on stage or film. If you ever wondered what all the fuss was about. Watch "The Eternal Callas""
Nothing new here
T. Fisher | 08/20/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"When I saw this DVD was over two hours long, I figured it would be a great introduction for me. I am just beginning to explore Maria Callas as an opera performer, and I figured it would have some excellent documentary coverage -- I had visions of the new "Karajan" DVD from Deutsche Gramophone in my head. A nice, definitive kind of documentary. I was very, very mistaken.
The biographic documentary film on the DVD is terribly short at under 15 minutes, and it is up for free on the EMI Classics website anyway. So although I hadn't seen any other Callas documentaries, this is exactly the one I had seen already.
Regarding the performances, I am fortunate enough to get the French cable channel "Mezzo" where I live, and they show most of the performances included on this DVD on a semi-regular basis. So I had seen most of those too. I have also seen a few of these on YouTube. They are from old French TV shows and such -- all concert/recital footage, no actual opera performances. And it looks like they are all from fairly late in Callas' career.
That leaves the interview footage, about an hour's worth, as material that was sort of new. It was very interesting. But even here, quite a bit is already on YouTube and in other places -- more old TV shows. Moreover, I had been considering buying some Callas interview discs anyway. Now I won't, out of fear I'd just be duplicating again. If you want Callas interviews, just go to the dedicated discs for that, don't bother with this selection of previously released materials.
I found this DVD pretty shameless in its warming over of leftover material. I know very little about Callas and basically came out not much wiser even after watching it.
If you don't browse the web for footage of things that interest you, and instead just go straight to DVD purchases, this might be good for you. But if you've even casually surfed around for Callas footage before deciding you want a DVD, there is a very good chance you've got these bases covered already.
UPDATE Aug 2009: I found the definitive documentary I had been looking for. I highly recommend Tony Palmer's Film About Maria Callas - 30th Anniversary Edition.