Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Puccini - Turandot / Corelli Udovick Mattioli Clabassi Previtali RAI|
Actors: Franco Corelli, RAI Opera
Genres: Indie & Art House, Musicals & Performing Arts
C. Hightower | OH USA | 07/08/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I was disappointed with the darkness of the video. It is very difficult to see what's going on. And the picture on the DVD cover is not the costume, makeup or even age of Franco Corelli shown in this version of Turandot. I did enjoy the music, but a CD would have been just as good."
Franco Corelli is Calaf
Peggy Stone | San Diego, CA USA | 07/27/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I had the privilege of seeing Franco Corelli as Calaf during his last years at the Met, and believe me, he spoils you for all other Calafs. Yes, the cover photo shows him in a different costume than this production, but what of that? This is an old B&W production, made for Italian television, with old technology, so don't expect the expanse and color of the Met or the visual clarity and camerawork of a good modern production. But it is wonderful to hear and interesting to watch (what "Turandot" isn't at least somewhat imaginative?), but above all, it is carried by the magnificent voice and carriage of the tenor that could sell "Nessun Dorma" like no other. He looks the part; he acts the part; and his ringing high notes can make you weak in the knees. I don't mean to give the sopranos short shrift, either - they are both excellent. At any rate, if you love this opera, give it a try."
A Turandot of Masks and Dancing
Monica | Romania | 03/27/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Most people will deplore the fact that this Turandot is black and white, as they are forgetting that many movie masterpieces were made like that at the beginning of cinematography. This is a beautiful production, obviously conceived not only in black and white, but also using the kind of lighting they had in 1958 (evidence that modern technology does not make great art, vision does!).
Most of the stage movement is dancing, which is an innovation, as one cannot really see the chorus singing. The dancing and some stylized movements of the characters are suggestive of an Asian/exotic atmosphere. Here we are not dealing with Chinese authenticity, the story is probably a European vision of "fabulous" China, which has nothing to do with historical reality, anyway.
The dancers and even the singers move with the music, serving the music, emphasizing orchestration and harmony, which is very rare, indeed. Interestingly, one cannot really see the Emperor of China, he is just a white silhouette in the "forbidden city." And the executioner's face is hooded.
Lucille Udovich in the title role sounds more Italianate than other celebrated sopranos, she begins "In questa reggia" very well. By the end of the show, she sings some harsh sounds, sounding a little fatigued.
Franco Corelli as Calaf was young here, but already on the top of the hill. He sings the entire role with a very beautiful, warm voice, which can also be heard in other renditions by him. Aesthetically very fulfilling, such a voice also brings complexity to the character. His acting is very restrained, in tune with the big picture, as all characters move rather like types, like masks, not displaying human passion. It is a theatrical vision made clear from the very beginning when the mask theme is shown. However, he does look intently at Turandot, his black eyes lit by white light -- a powerful effect obtained several times.
One high point is Corelli's rendition of "Non piangere, Liu," sung extremely tenderly, and another one the riddle scene, which is excellently sung and acted, but at the end, when both the soprano and the tenor sing "Gli enigmi sono tre," Udovich sounds a little harsh, perhaps because of the technology.
The "Nessun dorma" in this production is fine, surpassed only by some other Corelli renditions: a perfectionist, he kept working on his roles. But choosing your favorite "Nessum dorma" by Corelli is a matter of individual preference. You may treasure this one above others.
Plinio Clabassi is an excellent Timur, but Renata Mattioli is not a very good Liu, she strains and sounds shrieking, especially in Act 3.
The orchestra, the chorus and the conductor are excellent. There is a cut in the final duet, namely Turandot's lines confessing that she has loved Calaf from second one.
It is worth to watch
Jade Green | Los Angeles, CA, USA | 10/13/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"If you are prepared to watch a 1958's black and white movie, without today's high technology, this DVD is worth to watch. Especially, as a loyal Corelli's fan, after having listened to his CD of Turandot for many times, it was a reward to actually see Corelli in this performance. Corelli's voice was fabulous, overall the sound was great and what a handsome, romantic hero he was!"