Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Rossini - La Cenerentola|
Actors: Sonia Ganassi, Antonino Siragusa, Marco Vinco, Simon Orfila, Carla di Censo
Director: Paul Curran
Genres: Music Video & Concerts, Musicals & Performing Arts
An Admirable Production
Barry J. James | Honolulu, Hawaii United States | 06/02/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Owning the other two modern wide-screen versions of this opera (from Houston Grand Opera and Glyndebourne), I must say at once how much I enjoyed this production. In terms of sets, costumes, singing and general production it is significantly more entertaining and interesting than Sir Peter Hall's interpretation from Glyndebourne though perhaps it does not beat the Houston production with Cecilia Bartoli, Enzo Dara, Raúl Giménez and the irrepressible Alessandro Corbelli which is very slick and professional in all aspects of its production.
So why is this version so entertaining? I believe advancing the setting of the production to 1912 and giving it the style of traditional British pantomime helps no end. I did not like the extreme poverty that was a feature of Glyndebourne. While it may have been more technically accurate, aesthetically it detracted much from what is popularly considered one of the fairy tale operas. Mentioning that Don Magnifico had used the family fortunes to splurge and be extravagant towards his daughters in this version explained why the level of poverty was not as extreme here. I am only an enthusiastic amateur with no musical training but I enjoyed all of the vocal performances and cannot criticize the singers or the orchestra for the way they throw themselves into this production. The stage set and props that are used are quite good, but believe the production could have benefited from one further change of scene and some additional furniture. With the color of the costumes and the exaggerated mannerisms the somewhat stationary, `stand and deliver' type of singing actually seems quite appropriate.
I cannot understand why the stage crew is shown on center stage creating the special audio and visual effects for the thunderstorm or why, at one point only there is a close-up of one of the violinists in the orchestra pit. These add absolutely nothing to the production and actually take ones attention away from the rest of what is happening on stage. However, these are minor points for what, in all other respects, is quite admirable.