Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Wagner Lohengrin |
Actors: Wagner, Vogt, Kringelborn, Meier, Nagano
Genres: Indie & Art House, Musicals & Performing Arts
Steven Monroe | Wyoming | 07/12/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I rarely review items for Amazon, prefering to leave that to others. This production is, however, of such high quality I feel it deserves all the recognition it can get.
Staging is sparse, but appropriate and meaningful to the flow of the story line. Costumes are not necessarily modern, but certainly not 'period correct'. They are very striking though, and lend brilliance to the effect.
The singing is spectacular from all the characters.
Musical direction is first rate. Most of all, the sound and picture quality in Bluray is magnificent.
This is , for my money, the best available version of 'Lohingrin" available. Wagner's work is allowed to speak for itself, without imposition of any outside agendas. Highly recommended."
Something Different but not Better than Usual
Ben Franklin | USA | 11/06/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Three stars for the excellent singing, good acting, effective use of blu-ray visuals. I haven't seen the regular DVD version but I doubt that in it, Elsa's floral bouquet and dazzling white wedding dress in Act II would have the same impact.
I am afraid that my prejudices and preconceived notions prevent me from accepting anything but a fairy tale version of Lohengrin. Anything else is just plain silly. In the accompanying 68 minute documentary, we learn that the aim here was for a "psychological" version. So in the bridal chamber, Lohengrin composes music on a mirror imaged piano, with treble and bass reversed, meaning he is an artist from another universe and the forbidden question is about the true meaning of art. O brother! There were plenty of other inanities. Gottfried is restored to human form as a 9 year old, wearing long undies and just stands there. Wagner's directions have Elsa dying in his arms, but oh well. Vogt's Lohengrin seems somewhere between helden-tenor and counter-tenor which indeed does give the title character an other worldly nature. In the documentary his speaking voice suggests he is a natural baritone or bass. Maybe the singing voice is supposed to suggest the real reason that Lohengrin doesn't perform on the wedding night (HeHe).
Another star gets docked for the sound balance between soloists, chorus and orchestra. I chose the lossless 5.1 PCM track. This is the first time I have had to continually fiddle with the volume and bass controls in a BD. I rarely do it even with an ordinary DVD opera. A real effort was made not to cover the singers with the orchestra. But they over did it. Now as Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau has pointed out, in Wagner, the orchestra carries the melody and the singers ornament it. In contrast to Italian opera where I concentrate on the singing, I mostly listen to the orchestra in Wagner and in this BD, they sounded like they were behind the stage instead of in front. It also was a strange effect to hear the chorus making about the same volume of sound as the soloists.
To sum up, I am not sorry about my two day rental of this item but would not buy it and will turn to other versions for my next Lohengrin."
The first Wagner opera I watched straight through twice!
John Chandler | Melbourne, Australia | 02/16/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Wagner operas are never easy to cast and produce. The length and technical demands place huge restrictions on all areas and compromises are almost inevitable. Not in this case however. I thought this production was just magnificent. Updated somewhat but without the dreaded DJs and discount store rejects so many producers seem to favour these days. The picture and sound quality are demonstration and the casting is superb. Not a weak link anywhere. For the first time I felt Lohengrin flowed with life and logic and I enjoyed it so much I immediately sat through it a second time. For anyone wanting to try out a Wagner opera this is the perfect choice. For Wagner fans and Lohengrin addicts in particular do not hesitate. If only we could get a Ring done to the same standard."
C. Clarke | usa | 12/30/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Never before have I looked forward more to a blu-ray disc- Since my musical interests center around Opera and since having gone to alot of live performances , I was totally excited about this one..
The performance was a marvel.. Strong performances by all major participants... and the clarity and brilliance of sound made me feel that I was right there at a live performance'''- Better than being there , actually-
The order took a while to get to me but it was well worth it"