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Strauss: Elektra
Strauss Elektra
Actors: Brigitte Fassbaender, Franz Grundheber, Eva Marton, Cheryl Studer
Director: Claudio Abbado;Harry Kupfer
Genres: Musicals & Performing Arts
NR     2009     1hr 49min

There is a special category of German opera--we might call it the repellent masterpiece--in which some works of Richard Strauss are prominent, and Elektra is perhaps the pinnacle, certainly a unique experience. This produc...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Brigitte Fassbaender, Franz Grundheber, Eva Marton, Cheryl Studer
Director: Claudio Abbado;Harry Kupfer
Genres: Musicals & Performing Arts
Sub-Genres: Classical
Studio: Arthaus Musik
Format: DVD - Color - Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 05/26/2009
Original Release Date: 01/01/1989
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/1989
Release Year: 2009
Run Time: 1hr 49min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 1
Edition: Classical
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: German, French, English, Spanish
Subtitles: German, English, Italian, Spanish, French
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Movie Reviews

Daddy's little girl
Alejandra Vernon | Long Beach, California | 04/24/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This is a particularly dark production in every sense of the word...with the exception of Chrysothemis' red undershirt, the sets and costumes are predominately navy blue and black, with spots of light for illumination, and it works well for this murder and revenge story.Richard Strauss certainly composed some powerhouse parts for women, and this one could be compared to Salome in the sense that the title role is on stage throughout the entire opera, though the score is not as "accessible" and of course, Electra doesn't get to do that dance with the veils...My favorite scene is when Orestes shows up...the duet is extraordinary, and the music for Klytemnestra's murder never fails to give me chills.Eva Marton is brilliant as Electra. She puts her heart and soul into it, at one point singing with tears streaming down her face. Claudio Abbado does a fabulous job with this difficult score, Brigitte Fassbänder is stupendous as Klytemnestra, and Cheryl Studer excellent as Chrysothemis. Other good performances come from Franz Grundheber as Orestes, and James King as Aegisthus. The subtitles make the plot understandable, and it comes with a little insert that tells the story. Total running time (with the curtain calls) is 1:48.If you're a die-hard German opera fan, you're going to love this...otherwise, you might last about 15 minutes...and miss all the good parts ! To be honest, this one isn't easy, but rewarding if you stick with's great Greek drama, and Strauss at his best."
GEORGE RANNIE | DENVER, COLORADO United States | 05/10/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"For a truly riveting operatic experience, you must see/hear this DVD! Eva Marton is at the very height of her operatic career giving vocally and dramatically everything she had (and that was a lot in the 1980's when this performance was taped). I don't feel that any other singer could give more than she does in this role. Cheryl Studer is awesome and also at the height of her powers. This performance proves that Cheryl should have stuck with the Germans and avoided, like the plague, Lucia and Violetta. What a career she could have had!! Fassbaender is down right scary playing a truly demented and crazed mother. All of the aforesaid singers are really into their roles giving performances of a lifetime.The production, at the time, was controversial and was booed at this performance. Now it is simply exciting providing a memorable Elektra. After all, this ain't no fairy tale and this production does NOT treat it as one.With Abbado directing the hell out of this score, this operatic performance will stick with you for the rest of your life. So if you want to see opera at its most exciting and at its very darkest buy this DVD."
Marton a little wobbley but who cares, she is Elektra
James Walters | Seattle, WA USA | 10/12/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I admit that Marton is past her prime in this recording, and that a wobble does enter her voice, but who cares! What a dynamic performance. She acts it without holding back AT ALL. And her singing is all out emotion. I am usually a proponent of "beautiful singing" even in German music, but Marton is so seductively Elektra I could care less that her voice is less than perfect, it is a pleasing sound, once call tell that it was at one time exquisitely beautiful, but that it has been marred by time, and circumstance....hmmm kind of like Elektra. If you want the best production/performance of Elektra this is it. period."
ekluwer | Holland | 05/18/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"One of the most intense performances ever. In (any!!) music category!!! look at Marton and Abbado at the end! Totally out of this world. The sets are nightmare stuff. No wonder there is some booing at the end. Those old folks at the audience probably couldn't watch it for it's a life shortening performance for people with weak hearts. Buy it!!"