Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Verdi - Luisa Miller / Jacques Lassalle Maurizio Arena June Anderson Opra de Lyon|
Actors: June Anderson, Susanna Anselmi, Brigitte Desnoues, Taro Ichihara, Paul Plishka
Director: François Postaire
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Musicals & Performing Arts
In this intense, beautifully sung but minimally staged melodrama, Verdi ventures into the theme of parent-child relations, a motif that runs through his subsequent work and provides much of its emotional depth. He still ... more »
A Flawed But Very Good Performance
John G. Gleeson Sr. | Frederic, Mi USA | 01/04/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Luisa Miller is a transition work. The first 2 acts are"early Verdi", but the third act is musically and dramatically more intense, previewing the maturity expressed in Rigoletto and subsequent works. It is an opera that is not frequently performed, so for those of you who do not live near a performing opera center, this may be the only chance to experience a very good performance of a really lovely opera. The performances of June Anderson (Luisa), Paul Plishka (Count Walter) and Romuald Tesarowicz (Wurm) are all first rate. Anderson portrays the emotional impact of the villanous Walter's and Wurm's machinations extremely well, and Tesarowicz is really effective both vocally and dramatically in his role. Plishka's resonant bass, with its ringing top notes make up for some lagging acting. Susanna Anselmi as Frederica makes you wish that her part was greater than it is. She is vocally talented and an extremely lovely woman to boot! Less exciting are Taro Ichihara as Rodolfo. His tenor voice is not warmed up at the beginning, and is tired at the end. Admittedly, the third act makes enormous demands on the tenor, but others (Bergonzi on RCA)sing it without showing fatigue. Even when not tired, his voice is OK, but not great. Baritone, Edouard Tumagian (Miller)also has vocal problems at the top, but is very believable in the role of Luisa's father. Maestro Arena conducts well, but his hair stylist should have been fired, because he is frequently seen with his too long hair plastered accross his face. The tape to disc transfer is good, and so is the recorded sound. Another DVD of this fine work is unlikely, so if you are, like me, a devotee of Verdi, it's a must have. If you haven't yet tried opera on DVD,you should buy this disc, because opera on DVD really is the next best thing to a live performance. The producer, Kultur, has a nice lineup of opera on tape, waiting to be released on DVD. I think that you will find Luisa Miller to be a satisfying operatic experience, as long as you recognize that the plot, with great emphasis on paternal authority, is dated. But the music! Ah! An entirely different matter, with the wealth of melody that one expects from Verdi."
Superb 'Luisa' from Lyon
Gerard Fagan | Dublin Ireland | 06/29/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Kultur's DVD of the Opera de Lyon production of Verdi's 'Luisa Miller' confirms the high opinion I have long held of the work. The locale of Schiller's drama 'Kabale und Liebe' as adapted into Verdi's opera was changed by the censors from a German princely court to a Tyrolean village and the result is an intimate drama in the 'Traviata' mode. An interesting aspect of the opera lies in the comparison of the retired army sergeant Miller and the aristocratic Count Walter. Both love their respective children and want their happiness but Walter equates happiness with wealth and power even though these things have brought him anything but happiness and both end up equally bereft of children at the tragedy's conclusion. interesting too is the contrasat between Walter and his accomplice Wurm. Walter is capablre of honourable behaviour as where in the second Act duet he assures Wurm they will stand oir fall together. Wurm is presented as a base (as well as bass) villain with no redeeeming traits whatsoever. Musically the performance is all that could be desired. June Anderson presents a sweet Luisa who rises to the dramatic demands of the third act as well asd providing perfect coloratura in 'Lo vidi e'l primo palpito' and 'La tomba e un letto'. Taro Ichihara is a melliflous sounding Rodolfo who delivers the goods in 'Quando le sere al placido and meets the dramatic demands ofhis role. Eduard Tumagian is aq solid Miller. Paul Plishka as Walter shows the more positive side of his character while Romuald Tesarowicz portrays a sardonic villainous Wurm. Susanna Anselmi makes much of little as the near non-entity Federica.Full marks to the Opera de Lyon!"
Rare Verdi rarely done
Richard | Minneapolis, Mongolia | 07/30/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a fairly minimalist production, but it serves the drama decently. Luisa has a lot of scenic changes and it could hold up the drama. I am not too familiar with Luisa. I've only heard it as I made traversals of the entire Verdi canon. And it did not stand out - until now. Maybe its because I haven't heard any Verdi in a while, but I was really struck by the music this time. It is a wonderful piece and I do not entirely agree with some who claim the first two acts are throwbacks and the third forward looking. It does not fall apart but is a united work of art. The singers are dependable. Of course Anderson is outstanding. And Ichihara the tenor is more than adequate. He's no Pavarotti or Domingo but it is also nice to hear someone else in the tenor role. We are not likely to get another Luisa and its good to have such a good one here."
Sparse production, but beautiful singing - Recommended!
Spontini | 01/04/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Yes, the stage settings, chorus blocking and costuming are rather lackluster, but as a vocal performance this is a very fine rendition of Luisa Miller. June Anderson executes the title role with characterstic precision and beauty. As a singing actress, she is sufficiently compelling as Luisa that one wishes she had performed it more frequently (and in the U.S)."