How about Those Costumes
mackiemesser | Morehead, KY United States | 08/20/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"First, the music was written by the 14 year old Mozart and it is pretty good with some neat twists but nothing like what you expect in the more mature works. Vocally, particularly, the arias are very like instrumental concertos with space for a short unaccompanied cadenza. This means they are very difficult. This cast, particularly Aspasia(Organasova), Ismene (Lillian Watson), and Farnace (Jochen Kowalski) execute these with a lot of finesse. Sifare (Anne Murray) and Mitridate (Bruce Ford) are not so agile and tend to become very strident and wobbly in places, especially in loud or high passages. Still, the music is there and well performed. The worst feature of the staging is the costumes which I don't normally notice. All characters have huge wide skirts and the principles usually have wide (2-3') ledges out from their hips. This means the acting is stiff or non-existent and characters essentially must keep separate to prevent collisions. The colors are garish, Glaring reflections are common and Ismene's print is truly hideous. I'm normally tolerant of this sort of thing but even I thought this a serious defect in this production."
S. J McKenna | San Francisco, CA USA | 10/24/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have a version of this opera on VHS with Gosta Winbergh that blew me away when I saw it. I have been waiting hopefully for its appearance on DVD...but, I gave in and bought this one while I'm waiting. Absolutely excellent. Young Mozart was a soulful 14-year old to be sure. Much of his early-mid music strikes me as a mathematical exercise, with just about that much resonance...but this music is full of honest emotion without excess. Shades of the mature Mozart with no need to give ground for his extreme youth.
A WORK BY A YOUNG GENIUS
R. Olsavicky | Butler, Pa. USA | 05/18/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Amadeus means "loved by God." Only a genius loved by God could write and orchestrate like this and only be 14 years old. Sure it's the old opera seria style yet Mozart even at 14 expands the boundaries of this convention. I love this opera with this cast. Ford, Murray, Orgonasova and all sing wonderfully. The sets are fair the costumes are ridiculous but, who cares with singing and conducting like this. I'd rather have this then some recent euro trash I've just seen live! Don't miss any of a favorite soprano's (Orgonasova) other recordings. She's GREAT! What a joy it is to have a DVD of one of her performances. The singers and conductor make this work in spite of a weak plot and hysterical costumes.
Don't be afraid to give this a viewing. The performers are great."