Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Wagner - Gotterdammerung / Bonnema DeVol Iturralde Kapellmann Bracht Westbroek Zagrosek Stuttgart Opera|
Actors: Wagner, Albert Bonnema, Hernan Iturralde, Roland Bracht, Lothar Zagrosek
Genres: Indie & Art House, Music Video & Concerts, Musicals & Performing Arts
A bleak wind chord of E flat minor opens Götterdämmerung and establishes the dominant atmosphere of the piece from its first bar: twilight, a deceptive half-light, prevails. Shadowy figures stumble towards the abyss. The l... more »
F. FUNES | WHITE PLAINS,NEW YORK | 06/26/2004
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Meine Damen und Herren/Ladies and Gentlemen here it is:THE GUTTER-DÄMMERUNG.Folks,please brace yourselves for quite a ride!
After all the series of childish shananegans and the codswallop we witnessed in the previous three installments here comes the apocalyptic conclusion which crowns Richard Wagner's 25-years most monumental composition,whose production,I must confess is definitely the best of this whole bleak Stuttgart cycle.
In spite of the chichat and the fighting of the three Norns over the brown purse before the music of the prologue starts,the current time suit and tie attires of the characters,including Siegfried's sort of Fred Flintstone-like fur garment worn in the prologue and first act and the natural landscapes'projections shown in act III scene I,Konwitschny's conception of the piece,I must appallingly confess is the only one that makes a tiny tad of sense compared to the previous three of this anti-Ring,bearing in mind the old adagio that:"The one-eyed reigns in the land of the blind"...
We also have much better singing,particularly from the three principals:Bass Roland Bracht is a convincing Hagen(special fun
when he kills Gunther with a vicious karate chop!),dutch tenor Albert Bonnema,whom we've already heard as Giovanni De'Salviati and the Lay Brother in Schilling's MONA LISA navigates through the harsh work of his role with much more easiness than
Jon Frederick West in SIEGFRIED,not forgetting that lyrical Siegfrieds are the only ones available nowadays and finally soprano Luana De Vol,far away from being an ideal Brünnhilde does a satisfactory job,her voice of course much more suited
to the roles she performed in Franz Schreker's operas,like Eva in IRRELOHE and Lisa in the Vienna 1991 performances of his superb CHRISTOPHORUS ODER DIE VISION EINER OPER.
But in a world where Flagstads and Nilssons are icons from the past she's quite bearable,much deeper than for instance,Kupfer-Barenboim's lyrical soprano Anne Evans.Another brushstroke of nonsense is the conception of Alberich,the agent of evil and selfishness dying is Hagen's arms at the end of scene I,act II,if we compare with Kupfer's much more logical rendition of making the character the
only survivor at the end of the cycle.Pure reality:EVIL NEVER DIES.
Now we cut down to dessert topped with confetti,and this is Konwitschny's major gaffe:a brechtian address by Brünnhilde in her final immolation,while the curtain descends and Wagner's scenic indications are projected verbatim on a screen...
Now if the director wanted us to "just listen to the score"(quote)why not stay home and listen to any of the immortal classic versions?
Overall we will witness a much more interesting production,but always bear in mind that this is just experimental,far from the composer's will,perhaps more suited for an opera house like Bayreuth's,with a narrow repertoire of 10 works alone,rather than to establishments who have millions of other possibilities.
Like its predecessors,although to a lesser degree,it falls extremely short from being likable.
I think we've reached a point where lunacy equals common sense.
Sorry fellows...Only two stars and I think I'm being quite kind and magnanimous!!!"
FANTASTIC! A BREATH OF FRESH AIR.....
Brian Noble | Boulder, Colorado USA | 06/28/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Having seen this production in Stuttgart, I have been waiting for this DVD for years! Not only was this "Production of the Year" for 2000 (Operwelt Magazine), it also features Opernwelt's "Singer of the Year", Luana DeVol, who nails the role of Brunhilde vocally and with her grand stage presence (can you say Immolation Scene!!!). I am generally not a fan of modern productions and I understand those who are shocked by something "different", but somehow Konwitschny takes a lot of interesting ideas and blends them into an extremely entertaining interpretation that moves along quite well. Bits of humour are refreshing but absolutely never take away from the seriousness of the great work and, in fact, make for a very refreshing appreciation of Wagner. I have seen a few of Konwitschny's productions through the years and this is his best work yet.As mentioned, I have been waiting a long time to see this production again and I am happy to say it made me smile as I did a few years ago in Stuttgart when I was blown away by it's freshness and and strong performances by all."