GREAT VOICES AND COSTUMES REGIETHEATER PRODUCTION
Jesse Knight | woburn ma usa | 12/15/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"There are four DVD of Entfuhrung with Malin Hartelius. In two she is Blonde, recorded in 1991 and 1997. She is Constanza here, recorded in 2004. In addition there is a Region 2 DVD from Zurich recorded in 2003 which I have not heard, other than a clip on line. This latest 2004 DVD is probably the best one as the Zurich one was conducted by an assistant conductor.
In my opinion, Hartelius is the best Constanza yet, although some might find her high notes too piano. Whatever is lost dramatically, because of this, is more than made up for by her artistry. There are lots of vocal colors and dynamics in her very intimate portrayal. As always her acting is superb. Magali Leger is a superb Blonde, on the same level as Hartelius in her two earlier DVD. Klink as Belmonte is also excellent, as he is in the M22 La Finta Semplice, also with Hartelius. The remaining cast is almost as good. Minkowski conducts well.
Sound is excellent, although there is no venue acoustic being an outdoor performance. Some might object to the sound of tree frogs that comes and goes. This is a part of some outdoor recordings. In compensation I have never heard the ensembles sound so beautiful before.
Staging concept is somewhat similar to the 1997 Salzburg production in that it brings in some music and chanting from Turkey, that is not Mozart's. These interuptions are brief and less intrusive in my opinion than the Salzburg 1997 version. Costumes however are not modernized and are quite elegant. All in all this is a far better modern version than the M22 2006 Salzburg production.
This might not be the best choice if you are not familiar with this opera. In that case I recommend the 1991 DVD conducted by Gelmetti, with Ruth Ann Swenson as Constanza and Hartelius as Blonde."