Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Offenbach - Les Brigands / Gibault Trempont Chevalier Lyon Opera|
Actors: Colette Alliot-Lugaz, Valérie Chevalier, Monique Barscha, Michel Trempont, Jean-Luc Viala
Director: Yves-André Hubert
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Musicals & Performing Arts
This tuneful, frivolous bit of musical candy will probably be unfamiliar but is well worth knowing. Jacques Offenbach wrote dozens of operettas that are seldom seen in France and never performed anywhere else. Les Brig... more »
Although not wellknown, the music is so enchanting
Mrs. Sunar Tjahjono | Jakarta, Indonesia | 08/31/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Although this operetta is not so wellknown as The Merry Widow or the opera by the composer itself, Le Contes D'Hoffmann, it is not less magnificent and enchanting and we are amazed of the lively and sparkling music that is so beautiful and melodious from beginning to the end. It contains the exotic and specific French accent in the music,and give this operetta an extra-ordinary nuance. It is also sung and performed with such care and excellence, although the singers are not so wellknown outside Europe.
The disappointment only lies in the contemporary costumes which leave us no imagination of the crude and rough gang of bandits, as in here they just look like a bunch of office executives and employees on a union strike rather than a gang of robbers. They were dressed in ties and jacket or pullovers,while the daughter Fiorella and the other ladies were dressed in the contemporary Parisienne's way. Furthermore, the background set consisting of a glass building, fails to describe the sinister hills and woods in which robbers usually live in the old days. When the Duke of Mantua was lost and came crashing down the hill into the valley, he actually came crashing down the ceiling like an ordinary workman, while he misplaced Fiorella as a shepherdess dressed in an elegant formal suitdress. It may be the newest trend to modernized the performance this way, however for this kind of story it would be more fascinating if presented in the original form.
Nevertheless, forget inappropriate costumes or background set, the singing and the music is so delightful and excellent that we enjoy it so much."
Crack open the chanpagne
Offenbach Fan | England | 02/06/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Yes, a couple of glasses of champagne make the perfect accompaniment to this 5 star production, but try not to drink the whole bottle like I did (ouch).
Let's get the negatives out of the way first. It has been commented in the previous review that the transposition to 1920s Chicago doesn't work, as the dialogue still refers to mountain passes and dark tunnels etc. This is a spot on observation. However, in it's favour is that all the female characters are dressed in 1920s style, and mighty elegant they look to.
Other than that, not to mention an improbable plot, this production positively sparkles. Michel Trempont is superb as always, not only does he sing well but he also has a very distinctive speaking voice. But the real stars of this production are the two leading female roles, the very beautiful Valerie Chevalier as Fiorella and the warm toned Colette Alliot-Lugaz dressed up throughout as a man. They both have georgeous voices which complement each other perfectly. I have long been an admirer of the latter and am delighted that she is in this production.
Now to the music itself. Well what can I say other than it rips along at a great pace with one memorable tune after another. Whilst this is not one of Offenbachs most well known opera bouffes, it certainly has the greatest concentration of melodious, foot-tapping tunes which will have you humming for days afterwards. I defy anyone not to want to join in.
The cast also look like they were having a great time and putting the orchestra on the stage in the final act worked really well, particularly when the sauve Bernard Pisani took the cellist's chair.
Finally, if anyone watching this DVD wishes that they could have it on CD (believe me, it's fantastic music to cook to) then there is a very similar version directed by John Eliot Gardner available which stars Michel Trempont and Colette Alliot-Lugaz amongst others and is similarly superb.
I really love this production and sincerely hope you do."
drkhimxz | Freehold, NJ, USA | 01/31/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"In the event that this video finds itself re-issued some day or that you can find a library from which to borrow it, I want only to reaffirm the conclusions arrived at by the two reviews which more than adequately describe this musical. It is delightful: music, production, setting and performance combine to provide an evening of pleasure equal to that one would expect of Gilbert and Sullivan or the Marx Brothers.
I differ from the reviewers in only one respect: I find the scenic design perfectly suitable to the comedic intentions of the script. That it transposes the action from mountain passes to luxury hotels only adds to the fun. Non-sense is the order of the day"